Wednesday, November 04, 2009

I can see Obama not wanting word on this to get out,

but to claim keeping it quiet was for 'national security' reasons?
The internet chapter of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, a secret copyright treaty whose text Obama's administration refused to disclose due to "national security" concerns, has leaked. It's bad. It says:

* * That ISPs have to proactively police copyright on user-contributed material. This means that it will be impossible to run a service like Flickr or YouTube or Blogger, since hiring enough lawyers to ensure that the mountain of material uploaded every second isn't infringing will exceed any hope of profitability.

* * That ISPs have to cut off the Internet access of accused copyright infringers or face liability. This means that your entire family could be denied to the internet -- and hence to civic participation, health information, education, communications, and their means of earning a living -- if one member is accused of copyright infringement, without access to a trial or counsel
And it goes on from there.

Pointed to by Insty


Haji said...

In a normal world, it would be far easier to police the posters rather than the hosters. Since the only way its done these days is to shut down the channel rather than those using it, I can see how the Thought Police would go about doing it. Yup, hope for the change of the hope of the change.

Sigivald said...

The previous President did the same thing, so let's not try and blame Obama alone, or pretend this is an indictment (if true and accurately reported) of him, rather than of the State.

On the other hand, this is an alleged "leak", not confirmed text. And of a "treaty" that isn't finished, and would still need to be voted on to take effect.

I wouldn't trust Cory Doctorow's reading of anything more complicated than a menu - he seems to have made a hash of Geist's post, which is much less inflammatory than Doctorow's "ISPs gonna have to police you!"; in fact if he's correct about his "sources" saying that the enforcement is modeled after the US-Korea FTA, then Doctorow's claims are basically... lies.

(Geist says "sources" have confirmed five basic issues, most of which just duplicate existing free trade treaties, which patently exclude common carriers.

Doctorow somehow turns that into "treaty definitely destroying freedom on the internet!" - where he got that idea is unclear, since it doesn't seem to be in Geist's post.)

Nor would it kill YouTube, or blogs, or anything else - at least if Geist's sources are correct... which, if they're not, there's no story at all, is there?

The worst part about this is that Reynolds just uncritically reported Doctorow's hysteria - I don't expect better from Doctorow; I do expect better from Reynolds; he's a god-damn Law Professor.