ACTA is a Bad Way to Develop Internet Policy

Editor’s note: Today, Mitchell Baker posted her thoughts on the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement proposal. Below is an excerpt from her blog:

ACTA (“Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement”) is a proposed new international law establishing international enforcement standards against counterfeit goods and pirated intellectual property items. ACTA was negotiated as a “trade agreement” which means that it was negotiated in private without open involvement of all the stakeholders. There has been no formal opportunity for input from people other than those who were lucky enough to be invited into the private discussions.

This is a bad way to build Internet policy. The Internet is a fundamental platform for communication and interaction. There are many stakeholders. The voices of human empowerment, human rights, and competing economic interests must be heard. These voices must have a place at the table when policy is debated. ACTA was not created through such a process.

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