ACTA

Rejected in July 2013, ACTA was one more offensive against the sharing of culture on the Internet. ACTA (Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement) was an agreement secretly negotiated by a small "club" of like-minded countries (39 countries, including the 27 of the European Union, the United States, Japan, etc). Negotiated instead of being democratically debated, ACTA bypassed parliaments and international organizations to dictate a repressive logic dictated by the entertainment industries.

ACTA, a blueprint for laws such as SOPA, would have imposed new criminal sanctions and measures pushing Internet actors to "cooperate" with the entertainment industries to monitor and censor online communications, bypassing the judicial authority. It would have been thus a major threat to freedom of expression online and creates legal uncertainty for Internet actors.

Now that the European Parliament had rejected ACTA, it's time to shape the debate on an urgent adaptation of copyright law to new cultural practices.

ACTA Procedure in the EU Parliament

  • The International Trade (INTA) Committee of the European Parliament was the main committee working on ACTA.
  • The Legal Affairs (JURI), Development (DEVE), Civil Liberties (LIBE) and the Industry (ITRE) committees first voted on their opinions after holding “exchange of views” on draft reports.
  • Opinions were then sent to INTA to influence its final report, which recommended the EU Parliament as a whole to reject ACTA.
  • The final plenary vote by the EU Parliament on ACTA took place in July 2012.
  • See the infographics illustrating the ACTA procedure in the EP.

Timeline

Past

  • July 4th, 2013 - The European Parliament rejects ACTA by a huge majority.
  • March 19th, 2013 - Judgment of the General Court in the case opposing Sophie in ’t Veld (NL/ALDE) at the European Commission concerning the access to documents relating to ACTA
  • December 19th, 2012 - The EU Commission has withdrawn its referral of ACTA to the European
    Court of Justice
  • July 9th, 2012 - Michel Geist, a Canadian law professor, shows on his weblog that a leaks of CETA dated february 2012 reproduces the worst chapters of ACTA.
  • July 4th, 2012 – Final vote in the European Parliament: rejection by 478 to 039
  • June 21st, 2012 - The INTA committee votes on the final report
  • June 4th, 2012 - The DEVE committee votes on its report
  • May 31st, 2012 - The ITRE committee votes on its report
  • May 31st, 2012 - The JURI committee votes on its report
  • May 31st, 2012 - The LIBE committee votes on its report
  • May 30th, 2012 - Exchange of views in the JURI committee
  • May 8th, 2012 - The LIBE committee presents its report
  • April 26th, 2012 - Presentation of the second opinion of the EDPS on ACTA, in the “Civil Liberties” (LIBE) committee
  • April 25th, 2012 - Rapporteur David Martin presents its report to the “International trade” (INTA) committee
  • April 24th, 2012 - Rapporteur Amelia Andersdotter presents its report to the “Industry” (ITRE) committee
  • March 26th, 2012 – The European Parliament's “civil liberties” (LIBE) committee holds its first exchange of views on ACTA
  • March 27th, 2012 – The European Parliament's “international trade” (INTA) committee holds a meeting on ACTA
  • March 1st, 2012Workshop of the European Parliament's “international trade” (INTA) committee on ACTA
  • February 29, 2012 – The European Parliament's “international trade” (INTA) committee holds a meeting on ACTA
  • February 28, 2012 – The European Parliament's “industry” (ITRE) committee holds its first exchange of views on ACTA
  • December 16th, 2011 – The Council of the European Union adopts legal instrument for ACTA ratification
  • October 1st, 2011 – Canada, Australia, Japan, Morocco, New Zealand, South Korea, Singapore & the United States sign ACTA
  • May 27th, 2011 – EU Commission releases the final version of ACTA, which is now open to signature
  • November 24th, 2010 – Adoption of the resolution on the ACTA in the European Parliament
  • November 17th, 2010 – Motion for a resolution to wind up the debate on the statement by the Commission
  • September 23rd – October 1st 2010Eleventh and last round of negotiations held in Tokyo, Japan
  • September 9th, 2010Adoption of the written declaration 12/2010 in the European Parliament
  • August 16th-20th, 2010 – Tenth round of negotiations held in Washington, USA
  • July 13th, 2010Consolidated version of the ACTA text dated July 1st, 2010
  • June 28th – July 1st 2010Ninth round of negotiations held in Luzern, Switzerland
  • April 21st, 2010 – The negotiating parties published the documents of the eighth round of negotiations held in Wellington
  • April 12th-16th, 2010Eighth round of negotiations held in Wellington, New Zealand
  • January 26th-29th, 2010Seventh round of negotiations held in Mexico
  • November 3rd-6th, 2009Sixth round of negotiations held in Seoul, South Korea
  • July 16th-17th, 2009 – Fifth round of negotiations held in Rabat, Morocco
  • March 2009 – The European Parliament passes a resolution calling for the public availability of all ACTA materials. The U.S. government denies requests for access to ACTA documents on national security grounds but promises to review its approach
  • December 15th-18th, 2008 – Fourth round of negotiations held in Paris, France
  • October 8th-9th, 2008 – Third round of negotiations held in Tokyo, Japan
  • July 29th-31st, 2008 – Second round of negotiations held in Washington, DC
  • June 3rd-4th, 2008 – First round of negotiations held in Geneva
  • November 2007 – April 2008 – Governments conduct initial consultations on ACTA
  • October 2007 – The United States, European Union, Japan, South Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Switzerland, and Canada announce plans to negotiate ACTA

Thank You!

The European Parliament rejected ACTA by a huge majority on Wednesday 4th of July 2013. Now, it is time to start a positive reform of copyright to adapt it to the digital era.

In this regard, La Quadrature du Net's platform of proposals provides a thorough analysis of the key stakes and a consistent set of proposals, for the copyright reform as well as related culture and media policy issues.

To ensure further victories and continued action, please support La Quadrature, by making a donation or by helping out.

Video: NO to ACTA

Analysis

Access to generic medicines

  • Médecins sans frontières' analysis of Acta's consequences on access to medicines
  • Health Action International's analysis

Reference documents

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