Anti-Circumvention Laws Struck Down in Columbia

By Drew Wilson

On the back of the news we broke earlier about a study on anti-circumvention laws, news has arrived that those kinds of anti-circumvention laws have been struck down in the constitutional court of Columbia.

It’s part of many trade agreements including the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), but those same kinds of laws have been struck down.

The report comes from El Pais (Spanish) which says that the constitutional court found that Articles 13 and 14 of Law 1520 of 2012 are unenforceable.

One of those deals with anti-circumvention laws which prohibits the breaking of a digital lock even though its end use may have been legal under Columbian law. The language appears to bear striking resemblance to that found in the TPP where it even bans the importation and distribution of circumvention technology. (Hat tip: Michael Geist)

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) hailed this latest development as a victory for the country, saying that the law was hastily put together and poorly crafted.

While such decisions do not really set any kind of precedent outside of the country, court decisions and laws are sometimes cited in other countries as a guidepost for lawmaking in similar areas. It’s difficult to say whether or not this will be able to have an impact in lawmaking in other countries, but it is certainly another sign that such laws really go too far.

Drew Wilson on Twitter: @icecube85

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