The controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement (TPP) has once again leaked. The freshly leaked details re-confirms some of human rights and activists worst fears about the Intellectual Property chapter. We go in-depth into this secretive agreement to show what (if any) has changed and what remains on this secret agreement between countries around the world.
There may be many news stories that surface on broadcast media in your area. However, what is not likely to appear in local newspapers or mainstream news broadcast is the latest revelations coming from the secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement (or, as it is commonly referred to, the TPP in short). Major multinational corporations have direct access to it along with top negotiators who represent each individual country involved, but common citizens and even elected members of government are shut out of the process. How do we have access to some details of this agreement? It’s all thanks to Wikileaks which released a leaked copy of the updated draft agreement. We present to you full coverage of what is in this agreement as we read the details ourselves. For better referencing, we shall refer to the PDF version of this leaked copy.
The three strikes law concept has been falling on hard times in these last few months. The only country we haven’t heard about much that has implemented a three strikes law is South Korea. Now we have. Apparently, the laws have resulted in numerous takedown requests, multiple suspensions and little in the way of results when it comes to stopping piracy. Human rights organizations are calling on the government to re-examine the laws due to, in part, possible violations of human rights.
Hailed as the be-all, end-all solution to stopping Internet piracy, rightsholders from major multinational corporations have been trying to push the three strikes law in multiple countries over the last few years. A few countries caved from the the lobbying pressure and implemented such laws to keep the foreign corporations happy. It seemed that implementation meant that the laws were successful for these rightsholders as they pressured other countries to follow suit because of this new “international standard” for stopping piracy. Yet, what were the results of these laws? Did it slow down piracy in the end? Are music sales exploding on the charts? Unfortunately, it seems that everywhere such a law or policy was implemented, failure ensued.
Another person in New Zealand was fined under the New Zealand Three Strikes Law (or Skynet). This time, it was a member of the armed forces accused of downloading unauthorized works. He was fined $255.97 after receiving his third strike notice. The problem? He was serving his country in Afghanistan when the alleged infringement took place.
One of the many general criticisms of the three strikes law anywhere is that it would snag innocent people. In New Zealand, the Three Strikes law is guilt upon accusation, so it could even fine innocent people. That’s what happened to a soldier who was serving a tour in Afghanistan. He returned to New Zealand only to find that he received his third strike for copyright infringement. He was subsequently fined $255.97 because his guilt was simply presumed.
Some media outlets are picking a fight with the Australian government thanks to proposed laws that would increase oversight in the media. The government’s move was triggered by the phone hacking scandal in Britain. While a lot of attention was focused on regulations, the debate has taken a bizarre twist in which media executives are calling for a three strikes law “similar” to France, New Zealand, and the US.
Could Australia be the next targeted country to face intense lobbying to implement a three strikes law? That appears to be a real possibility if the latest reports are any indication. The Financial Review is reporting that Foztel CEO Richard Freudenstein is demanding that the Australian government put in place a three strikes law that is “similar” to France, the US and New Zealand. From the report:
We’ve been covering the various countries that the IIPA (International Intellectual Property Association) wants to see on the Special 301 report. A surprising request is that Mexico be included on that list. It’s not what was included in the submission that is the most surprising, but what isn’t.
Last year, to the surprise of many, Mexico signed the controversial Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). Some suggest that this was to get into the controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement (TPP) which is an agreement for even further tightening of copyright laws around the world. In addition to that surprise move, Mexico is famous for having the longest copyright term in the world (100 years after the creators death). You’d think that these moves would put Mexico in the good books for foreign copyright holders. You’d think wrong. The IIPA, in spite of all of these moves to please such entities, it once again, demanding that Mexico be placed on the Special 301 report (PDF) anyway.
One of the main theories behind the three strikes law is that it would reduce piracy and stop the decline of music sales in the marketplace. France is one of the countries that first put a three strikes law in place for copyright infringement though HADOPI back in 2009. Fast forward to 2013, music sales continued to slide even after the laws were put in place.
HADOPI is one of the laws we’ve been tracking. Last month, procedural error sunk a would-be HADOPI conviction. For those that have followed HADOPI since 2009, that’s just one event in a long list of problems that faced both the law and the enforcement body. Still, that didn’t stop major record labels and movie studies from demanding similar laws be brought in to other countries. New Zealand followed suit with their own version of the three strikes law which was dubbed the “Skynet” law. While there conviction, the major record labels had to spend $250,000 to get a $616.57 fine. While large sums of money may be spent to achieve little results, the three strikes law concept has been dealt with a fresh blow – music sales are slumping even with a three strikes law in place.
The Recording Industry Association of New Zealand (RIANZ) finally convicted its first file-sharer under the now tested New Zealand three strikes law. While RIANZ may be feeling satisfied it got a result, the money spent may raise some questions over the effectiveness of such a law.
We’ve been covering the developments of the New Zealand three strikes law for close to a month now. When we reported on the first conviction, one of the things we discussed is the possible similarities between the Skynet law and HADOPI – particularly how the balance sheet didn’t look pretty for HADOPI. Now, today, New Zealand media is reporting on exactly this topic. Apparently, in order to get to this point in time, RIANZ spent a quarter of a million dollars to send out copyright violation notices. Since RIANZ has only gotten one conviction, the rewards for spending that money came to a grand total of $616.57 in fines.
The day after New Zealand saw its first conviction under the so-called “three strikes law”, the Recording Industry Association of New Zealand (RIANZ) went on the airwaves to discuss the development. Managing director Chris Caddick said in a radio interview that the very act of downloading a file-sharing program in an and of itself is proof of wrongdoing.
We’ve been closely monitoring the situation in New Zealand where the three strikes law, sometimes referred to as the Skynet law, is making headlines. Earlier this month, Freezenet was one of the first this year to report on the developments that the first file-sharer would be convicted under the law that was financed and lobbied for by the United States.
New Zealand is the latest in a growing list of countries convicting alleged copyright infringers over so-called three strikes laws. The accused denies involvement in every single accusation, but received a fine under the now tested law.
The HADOPI law (Haute Autorité pour la diffusion des œuvres et la protection des droits sur internet) and its government agency under the same name, has had its share of controversy over the years in France. Now, another incident has occurred that just adds to the list of reasons why some might question the anti-piracy effort in the first place.
The law made its appearance in 2008 – particularly when it was introduced in the French senate. At the time the French UMP party headed by Nicolas Sarkozy pushed the bill through government as a matter of urgency in spite of a number of objections both within government and outside of government. It would also be a staple for anti-piracy efforts around the world as they finally have one of the first countries in the world to try implementing a so-called “three strikes law” where three accusations of online copyright infringement can mean your Internet access is cut off as well as you being issued fines.