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Secret Copyright Treaty Timeline Shows Global DMCA 184

An anonymous reader writes "Michael Geist, a leading critic of the ACTA secret copyright treaty, has produced a new interactive timeline that traces its development. The timeline includes links to leaked documents, videos, and public interest group letters that should generate increasing concern with a deal that could lead to a global three-strikes and you're out policy."
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Secret Copyright Treaty Timeline Shows Global DMCA

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  • Emailgate (Score:5, Insightful)

    by plopez ( 54068 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @12:06PM (#30431938) Journal

    If any organization needed an emailgate, this is one of them. We need to see who is manipulating and bribing who. Just like the open docs. fiasco.

  • Doubleplusnotgood! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by filesiteguy ( 695431 ) <> on Monday December 14, 2009 @12:15PM (#30432032) Homepage
    I get a very bad feeling about international DCMA. It is bad enough the US citizens bent over and allowed the DCMA to be delivered, but now?

    Next thing, I'll be sitting in jail for trying to solve a Rubik's Cube by taking it apart.
  • Bring it on (Score:5, Insightful)

    by frenchbedroom ( 936100 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @12:24PM (#30432130)

    The harder they push in this direction, the more people will realize there is another way []

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 14, 2009 @12:28PM (#30432194)

    Human beings are very good at making positive short term actions that lead to long term detriments.

  • by girlintraining ( 1395911 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @12:31PM (#30432226)

    Intellectual property is an invention of the rich countries to force the poor countries into an economic model that benefits them. Knowledge has always been power, and the developed countries of the world realize that by locking up their books and restricting the free trade of information and knowledge, they can effectively keep those countries enslaved -- producing real, material goods, in exchange for imaginary ones.

    That, people, is the true objective of intellectual property. You people think they care about you making pirate copies of CDs and DVDs? How pathetically self-centered! The truth is much bigger than your hard drive contents.

  • technology tames the law

    the law never tames technology

    not for want of trying of course

  • sneaky... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by gedw99 ( 1597337 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @12:36PM (#30432264)
    Lets face it. The "authorities" have now realised that the internet allows people to collaborate and learn openly whats really going on in the world, and how the puzzle fits togther. this to them is danderous. the cat is out of the bag, and now they are trying to gain control over it so they can manage the leaks as it were. Its crucial that the internet remain fully open !!!! Its thats simple. More groups that support open information should be targettting these groups hard. This is the type of thing that the authorities will try to slide in to legislation as part of trade agreements like they do with all the other things. Dont support treaty x, y and z - Sorry you cant trade with us. Its really insidious and smart tactic they use.
  • by Penguinisto ( 415985 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @12:39PM (#30432292) Journal

    Well, any other route to global domination would be a bit too obvious, dontcha think? I mean, why make blatantly obvious laws that everyone notices immediately? Instead, you can make opaque, confusing, and outright obscure laws to sneak in and swipe individual liberty, one piece at a time, just like seawater eroding a sand castle on the beach. After all, it's far easier to point at a pile of obfuscation and say "don't worry - only those nasty artist-raping copyright pirates will have to worry about it - you're fine". Next, you can impose laws in the name of, oh, "the environment", then "safety", then "health", of course "the children", and then... well, you get the idea. Give it a pretty name, gloss over the ugly parts, and market it, one small piece at a time. As long as the proletariat is comfortable, they won't mind the ride until it's too late to actually do anything about it.

    Besides, fascism-by-bureaucracy is far less messy to accomplish than staging an armed coup. Certainly a bit slower to do, but far more certain (as a bonus, you can condition the masses to actually be comfortable in the new environment. All you have to do is keep them distracted with neat little toys, lots of sexual entertainment, and the occasional celebrity gossip, just like they did it in the old days of Rome...)

  • Re:Wow. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by StreetStealth ( 980200 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @12:42PM (#30432332) Journal

    Normally I'm against captain-obvious troll-feeding, but this is one case where I think a response is merited.

    ACTA awareness needs to reach as far as it possibly can. We are, quite literally, talking about the future of the world here: A global treaty that promises to have a profound effect upon the freedom of all of us is being negotiated in secret.

    The maximum must be brought to light before the widest audience. If that means dupe stories, then I'm all for dupes.

  • Re:Emailgate (Score:2, Insightful)

    by angelwolf71885 ( 1181671 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @12:49PM (#30432438)
    12 trillion on red it gets tucked into the climate bill that will pass in the US very shortly after Copenhagen is over
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 14, 2009 @12:52PM (#30432494)

    Unfortunately they can kick you off the internet for a period of time by allegation alone. You know, that little novelty some of us run hobbies off of, or maybe send the occasional "electronic" letter to our hip friends in other cities through Prodigy.

    That also means anyone could remove any other IP address simply by accusing them of copyright infringement.

    By simply sending 3 letters I could remove the computer running RIAA.COM or WHITEHOUSE.GOV
    Sure they can move it to another IP address but the time and effort to do so makes printing a few cut & pasted letters seem
    worth it. What would happen if a group of individuals got together and started a letter writing campaign claiming copyright
    infringement by a whole block of addresses. I cant wait to see how these laws will be abused.

    If they add something allowing the person disconnected to sue the accuser (effectively requiring you to pay to prove your innocence)
    then set up a limited company and fold it right before any lawsuits start.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 14, 2009 @12:55PM (#30432528)

    >Intellectual property is an invention of the rich countries

    Or, you know, people just wanted to make money off their creations.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 14, 2009 @12:58PM (#30432586)

    And you'd have a hell of a time finding employment if you want to do more than local burger flipping and dish washing.

  • by girlintraining ( 1395911 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @01:09PM (#30432748)

    digital sharecropping. nuff sed.

    How interesting that you mention farming. The way copyright and patent law works now, it would be illegal for me to use irrigation and farming techniques any more modern than at least 1880 (150 years plus the life of the author). Think about that when people talk about the war on "piracy". It's not -- we're on the right side (by distributing this stuff for free and attacking their business model) but we're here for all the wrong reasons.

    Hackers need to return to their roots: Deep down inside, we know that free access to technology is a liberating and empowering experience. We've become complacent -- certain that we'll crack whatever protection scheme they invent, and comfortable with the labeling of criminal and pirate. We think we're too hard to find, too decentralized, and it would be too expensive to take us out. That arrogance will kill this community and everything it stands for.

    We need to give the disadvantaged access to the collective's knowledge. That's always been our purpose. It's the guiding principle behind open source -- and piracy and breaking copy protection is just the cheap way to avoid having to reinvent the wheel. But we have to... Because otherwise we'll have to wait through three generations of humanity growing up to have access to what we do today. We need the old school hacker mindset more now than ever before -- and we need to understand the golden age is at its end. We're about to go toe to toe with Goliath -- a worldwide cooperative of corporations, governments, and private interests with trillions of dollars at their disposal, secret treaties, courts, and increasing levels of control over the media.

    This is not a conspiracy theory. This is not someone crying wolf. This is out there, it's real, and it's happening now -- and we are acting like The Pirate Bay and torrents are a blow against these faceless powers. We still have people like Richard Stallman and his precious GPL, and we argue over and over again about the merits of a change in language. Typical geeks -- we focus on the details and fail to see the big picture. There are over five billion people living in complete poverty, and intellectual property is one of the barriers keeping them there.

  • Re:Wow. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Lumpy ( 12016 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @01:12PM (#30432780) Homepage

    I agree, problem is most of us here in the USA are already used to the oppressive laws against consumers so we already do our DMCA violations in secret.

    I have to live as if the SS will come smashing down my door in search of contraband. All because I'm a wierdo that wants to have his own Video on demand system with a server full of my DVD's, HDDVD's and Blu Rays, ready to play in any room.

    I'm evil, destroying all that is American by not being patriotic and switching discs and cluttering up my living room with cabinets full of discs (Destroying the economy by not buying furniture to hold them! OMG!)

    Honestly I took the stand that I don't give a rats-ass what laws are passed and what they say. The laws are un-just so I not only ignore them, I am in contempt of them. I'll do what I want, if I have to design in a system to automatically destroy "evidence" when they storm the house, then so be it. It's the price I pay for living in a country where we gave up being by the people and for the people.

    The USA is for the Corporations and by the Corporations....Anyone saying otherwise is either blind or watches Fox News too much.

  • Re:Wow. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Hurricane78 ( 562437 ) <deleted@slashdoA ... inus threevowels> on Monday December 14, 2009 @01:17PM (#30432864)

    My view is, that the Internet by its very definition does not make it possible for such a treaty to be any more that a pipe dream.

    We already have darknets, wich are way beyond the grasp of any legislation. They would have to literally shut down the internet, to even stop it for more than a month. After that everyone would just have a personal net with all the wlan nodes around, completely and literally routing around the net. Everyone who knows how to do it, will do it. And everybody else will ask those, to do it for them. Even if that becomes illegal, it will become like selling weed. (A war long lost.) But it won’t ever stop.
    Because inside, everybody knows what is right and wrong. And that ACTA is not right. Even the hypocrites who say the opposite, secretly use Bittorrent.

    Until there is nothing else left for them, than to give up.

    First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win.

  • Re:Bring it on (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Hurricane78 ( 562437 ) <deleted@slashdoA ... inus threevowels> on Monday December 14, 2009 @01:23PM (#30432932)

    Of course they will care. Because what is the point of ACTA? More money.
    From people who do not have more money.

    So it creates financial pressure. And as humans always seek the easiest (most efficient!) way, they will naturally be pressed towards CC and more secretive file sharing (which will become way easier to set up).

    ACTA is the classic “tighten your grip, until you are left with nothing”.

    There is no way to win this, for the content industry. They can only lose.
    They get to choose the way it ends. Nothing more.
    If they want to choose the faster dead (ACTA), let them. :)

  • Democracy no? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by patrickthbold ( 1351131 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @01:28PM (#30432990)
    A lot of us live in "Democracies." Maybe some of us who don't suck should run for office. And maybe some others could help them out. I don't thing voting for change is enough in this day of age. We need people who are different that we can vote for first. Any takers?
  • Re:sneaky... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Hurricane78 ( 562437 ) <deleted@slashdoA ... inus threevowels> on Monday December 14, 2009 @01:29PM (#30433012)

    Its crucial that the internet remain fully open !!!! Its thats simple.

    Nah. Not even. If only one single stream of communication remains open, that’s enough to pipe the whole internet trough. If we have, we pipe every tcp/ip packet trough twitter. If we have, we form direct wlan-to-wlan nets. We do not even need providers in any city of reasonable size. Soon with mobile phones, this will even become bigger. In theory, you can use any mobile phone as a gateway.

    The can/box, and it won’t ever close again. It’s that simple.

  • by HungryHobo ( 1314109 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @02:01PM (#30433378)

    Simply put

    1: Your letters will be ignored if they're accusing someone important.
    If you accuse a senator there's no way in hell they're getting disconnected.

    2: If the RIAA accuse everyone in a network block of copyright infringement with no proof then so what?
    In theory there are penalties for sending fraudulent DMCA notices but you have to have deep pockets to make it stick and there's probably some crap whereby they only have to prove that they *believed* you were violating copyright because the magic 8 ball said so and hence were acting in good faith.

    3: the penalties if you do make it stick are probably a drop in the bucket for the RIAA/MPAA etc

    4: If you try to turn it against them and serve notices to them then they will have deep pockets to make it stick to you and will make an example out of you.

    5: the penalties which would be a drop in the bucket for the RIAA/MPAA etc will make you bleed out your ears.

  • Re:Bring it on (Score:4, Insightful)

    by aynoknman ( 1071612 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @02:08PM (#30433448)

    There is no way to win this, for the content industry. They can only lose. They get to choose the way it ends. Nothing more. If they want to choose the faster dead (ACTA), let them. :)

    The problem with letting them is the collateral damage. I'm reminded of the cartoon of the criminal holding a child's head next to his with a huge pistol pointing at the two of them. "Stand back or the kid gets it!"

  • Brilliant. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Dirtside ( 91468 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @02:33PM (#30433774) Journal

    Yeah, because perpetual copyright wasn't enough for these greedy fucktards.

  • by girlintraining ( 1395911 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @02:38PM (#30433838)

    The truth is that the developing world would benefit from greater IP protection, as IP currently has functionally **no** protection in most of it.

    The developing world would benefit more from spending all of their money developing infrastructure instead of licensing and importing it in exchange for their natural and human resources. Their economy is not like ours: The multiplication effect is such that for every dollar they invest in infrastructure, the return on investment would be three, even as much as five times. The multiplication effect is lower in developed countries because we are operating close to or at the production possibilities curve. Although it seems like only pennies on the dollar to license these technologies, for them it represents a major investment rather than part of the aggregate cost.

  • Re:Emailgate (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Sylver Dragon ( 445237 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @02:40PM (#30433872) Journal
    I'd take that bet, I'm figuring that it'll get attached to the defense spending bill which is still waiting to be passed for this year (or next year's, if it takes that long). The Republicans are going to fight anything which comes out of Copenhagen which isn't an obvious hand-out to the oil companies. On the other hand, they won't fight a defense spending bill even if it had a "we're going to kill babies and stick them on spikes" rider in it.
  • by microbox ( 704317 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @02:46PM (#30433914)
    Our economic system is predicated on perpetual growth -- and business interests have talked about IP as the new "gold" for decades. It is not an evil conspiracy, but rather, politicians and business leaders believe that they need to enact these laws for our system to continue to grow. It's not just the RIAA and MPAA, it's also the big phama and agricultural firms.

    Personally, I think it is bullocks dreamed up by people who never created art in their entire lives. Nobody is going to pay for "IP" when they need food on the table. Furthermore, these laws will be used to silence the critics of political interests.

    It is precisely the free exchange of ideas that creates intellectual wealth, which is why these laws are fundamentally counter-productive in their goals.
  • Re:Emailgate (Score:2, Insightful)

    by lgw ( 121541 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @03:07PM (#30434138) Journal

    The health care fiasco is in a defense appropriations bill. The "we're going to kill babies and stick them on spikes" rider (aka, federal abortion funding) was a subject of some debate among Dems, although I honestly can't follow the health care proposal at the rate it is changing (wait, it's "Medicare at 50" now?), so I don't know where the whole spiked baby thing ended up. At any rate, the Republicans will fight, at least against things being added to the bill.

    As more and more "adjusted, homogenized" climate data turns out to be fraudulent, it seems a bit premature to destroy our economy to prevent something possibly fictional. Even with the falsified data, it's unclear that the economic impact of coping with climate change exceeds the economic impact of preventing it. But then, if your goal is to seize any opportunity to take control over how other people live their lives, and force them to live the way you think is best, then better hurry with that Copenhagen thing before the excuse finishes unraveling.

    Have you seen the latest on the Antarctic data adjustments? The data from 63 temp sensors was "homoginized" by simply discarding the data from 62 of them and replacing those 62 with the data from the sensor with the fastest warming, producing a rate of change 8 times what might be reasonable. Persumably the hot sensor is near Mt Erebus (Antarctica's active volcano). You can "prove" anything you want if you lie about the data.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 14, 2009 @03:27PM (#30434382)

    That hasn't stopped RIAA member attorneys or RIAA themselves from making false statements in DMCA takedown notices all this time...

    But, since you're not one of them, they're very likely to enforce the rules ON YOUR make an example of they can send a message to others that standing up for your rights by doing the same thing they let the corporations get away with will not be tolerated.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 14, 2009 @03:43PM (#30434538)

    You weren't expexted to email your CV then. Mostly because many people didn't have internet (and only businesses had broadband).

    Rather like "My grandad didn't need a car to live" well now "everyone" has a car, you can do fuck all if you haven't got one...

  • by babblefrog ( 1013127 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @03:59PM (#30434728)
    What? An idea is yours so long as you keep it to yourself. Once you tell me your idea, you want to be able to control what I can do with it? By force, of course. How can you own something which is now in my mind? This is one of the most perverted discussions of "the rights that men were born with" that I have ever read.
  • by Omestes ( 471991 ) <> on Monday December 14, 2009 @04:16PM (#30434932) Homepage Journal

    Government is created to try and preserve the rights men were born with.

    We're born with rights? I wasn't aware of any viable a priori or empirical proofs towards that conclusion. What the hell is a right, where the hell do they come from? Neither of these questions have been answered to any degree of certainty. Generally all they are is convenient slogans used to make an emotive argument towards their own agenda. Functionally they are nothing more than a social construct. All persuasive descriptions of rights are merely normative proscriptions (Kant's Categorical Imperative, the various social contracts, etc...), and not descriptive systems of actual innate rights.

    Also who is to say who owns what? Do you own your land, the land that someone stole from the Native Americans?

    s the idea of ownership is the most fundamental concept of a free man [certainly, a man must be allowed to own himself! another idea that is unique amongst world governments to the US constitution...]

    Personally ownership/property would be secondary to the basics of survival, since the latter necessarily precludes the former. Looking at the history of society, the so-called "innate right" to personal property is a relative newcomer, with early communities being rather communistic (i.e. community property), and much of the time after the widespread advent of "private property" much of the population didn't actually have this right, being that all land/property was the Crowns. For an innate right, it springs up REALLY late in the game.

    Also, how can we say that the US Constitution "allowed a man to own himself", and was "unique" in this? We were one of the last countries to realize that a large segment of the population WASN'T property. In half of our history I could claim ownership over you, based solely on your level of melanin. Hell, we didn't even realize that women had rights until rather late in the game, and they were over half the population.

    The US was a backwards country based off of economic exploitation and not any conception of "rights". In some regards we still fall into this mold.

    Intellectual Property is the basic realization that ideas are the most valuable things in human history, and that a man ought to be free to own his ideas -- just like he is when he's alone on an island.

    And your own holy Constitution craps on that idea. Governments exist for the good of society (a collective entity of individuals), and not for YOU, or any other person. Copyright, and IP in general, exists for the benefit of all members of society, and not just you. Thus the idea of a limited monopoly on your intellectual creation. The only reason you get this small monopoly is to sucker you into creating more stuff (using your greed for the benefit of the society as a whole), there is no high-falutin' "the effluvia that flows from your brain is sacrosanct" clause in the constitution. There is two reasons for this; the first being that there is no proof that the founding fathers were rugged individualists (in the sense we mean today, they probably would have giggled madly at Ayn Rand, and the modern libertarian party), and that it is incredibly naive to think that any individuals ideas came from a vacuum, you owe your great idea to great ideas before that. If all individual ideas were walled off, there would be no progress since without the old ideas, there are no new ideas.

    Not "humanity, the pool of humans", but "humanity -- the essence of what a man is".

    Featherless bipeds? There is no "essence", people are free to create their own essence. My idea of what I would probably piss you off, and visa versa. Human nature, is by nature, almost infinitely malleable. Personally I do think that IP is largely meaningless, outside of a way to blackmail creators into creating more. I can't smell, see, or measure IP, therefore it is no more real than any other mere idea. Ideas should always be subjugated by that which exists

  • by schon ( 31600 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @04:29PM (#30435094)

    I happen to think that I own the toil of my hands and the ingenuity of my mind.

    You can think whatever you like, it doesn't make it correct.

    Say you walk by a construction site after everyone's gone home, and decide you're gonna use the materials there to build a house. Do you own the house? After all, it was done with "the toil of your hands and the ingenuity of your mind".

    But no - you will find that the owners of the materials and the land own the house, not you. And *they* will be the ones that have "exclusive control" over it.

    Creativity does not occur in a vacuum. Writing music, drawing, sculpting, story writing - these are *all* built upon the work of others. When you go to school and study how to become a painter, you start by examining the works of other artists. We learn how to be great artists by studying the works of others, and incorporating their methods into our own. If you disagree, I challenge you to create something that does not incorporate any prior work or idea from anyone else - if you are delusional, you might even think you will succeed.. but it wouldn't take anyone familiar with the medium to find similar elements "stolen" from others.

    Since these works have no tangible goods they do not belong to anyone, but in order to encourage creation the government has graciously granted the authors the right to exclude others from copying them for a period of time. Make no mistake - you cannot own culture or ideas. You can be granted the exclusive right to profit from it, but you cannot own it.

  • by Shagg ( 99693 ) on Monday December 14, 2009 @05:14PM (#30435542)

    This isn't a jail policy, they can't imprison you on allegations yet.

    Not yet... give them time.

    What they can do today though is essentially financially ruin you for life based off of a civil suit.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 14, 2009 @05:45PM (#30435932)

    No, 14 years was set way back when the speed of technological and cultural progress was 10% of what it is now. 5 years is more reasonable.

I've noticed several design suggestions in your code.