I found a mark-up copy of ACTA here
(assuming anyone wants to actually read the thing
instead of speculating wildly). It is a bit difficult to follow, primarily because there are variations between the agreeing nations on the wording,
but so far all I see is an International agreement to enforce intellectual property right claims across national boundaries.
I am vehemently opposed to SOPA/PIPA because both of these bills seek to proactively punish websites without due process (as in based on accusation
rather than conviction) and based solely on content that may be added without the knowledge or consent of the owners. In simpler terms, it tries to
enforce piracy laws onto those who did not promote piracy, but allowed for free speech of others, and does so without anyone being convicted.
That is wrong. It is also a danger to the Internet.
ACTA, on the other hand (at least what I have read so far) is nothing like that. All it does is to agree that intellectual property rights holders in
one nation can bring charges against accused pirates in other nations. If you own the rights to a song or video in the United States, for instance,
and someone in England is selling it without your consent, you can still sue them.
What's wrong with that?
Singers, songwriters, programmers, producers, and writers all have the right to their property just as much as you or I have the right to our
property. The difference is that these people own something that they created rather than something they bought. In my opinion, that makes it more
theirs than buying something. It is their creation. That means they get to say how or if it is distributed and how much they want for it.
This is nothing new; people have owned their own creations since the earliest times in history. They have to in order for people to want to create.
No one is going to spend untold hours of their time and use their talents to create something if there is no benefit to them. To make piracy legal is
to stop all progress.
The problem today is that someone can write a program in the US, expecting to sell it and make a few bucks for all their hard work, and someone in
Japan can get a copy and start selling it for less... or even giving it away just to get traffic to their website and make money from the advertising.
The creator in the US can't do much about it, because they aren't in Japan. So the person who made the program, the person who owns the program,
gets a little income, but someone who simply copied it gets a lot of income.
Someone want to tell me how that is fair?
Under ACTA, the creator can file suit against the pirate in Japan, and Japan will pursue the charge. That's all.
Now, if I have missed something in ACTA that goes too far, please let me know; that could change my mind completely. But please save your keyboard if
all you have is what someone said the treaty says or wild unfounded accusations. Show me in print, in the treaty or in legislation, actual
Or be prepared to show yourself as uninformed.