News

Net Censorship Comes Before the EU Parliament

Last Spring, the European Commissioner for Home Affairs, Cecilia Malmström, presented a proposal for a directive to combat child exploitation. Unfortunately, this very important and sensitive matter is used to introduce dangerous provisions regarding Internet blocking, which could pave the way for a wider censorship of the Internet in Europe. The EU Parliament must absolutely reject this Trojan horse and uphold the fundamental rights of EU citizens.

The EU Must Stop Hungarian Net Censorship

La Quadrature du Net joins the blackout operation launched by Hungarian civil rights activists who oppose the newly enacted media law. Everybody is invited to join the blackout and contact their representatives to oppose any kind of censorship in the European Union.

U.S. Fails to Offer Convincing Net Neutrality Policy

On December 21st, the U.S Federal Communications Commission (FCC) adopted a new order aimed at protecting Net neutrality. This is a first step. Unfortunately, the rules passed by the FCC suffer from serious flaws which make them ill-suited to protect the neutral and open nature of the Internet. As the European Commission continues to work on its report regarding Net neutrality, the U.S example shows the importance of adopting strong protections to prevent network operators from destroying an Internet ecosystem based on free speech and open innovation.

Administrative Net Censorship adopted in France; Pedophiles unworried

Paris, December 15th 2010 - The French Parliament adopted article 4 of the LOPPSI law, which establishes the administrative filtering of the Net through the Trojan horse of "child protection". Such a scheme will allow for the generalised censorship of Internet content while doing nothing to stop pedophiles and child pornography. The rejection of judiciary supervision clearly illustrates the will of the executive branch to control the Internet.

ACTA: Updated Analysis of the Final Version

Following the release of the final, legally-verified version of ACTA (dated December 3rd), we have updated our analysis of the most worrying provisions of this dangerous anti-counterfeiting agreement.

ACTA AS A BULLYING WEAPON FOR THE ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRIES

Wikileaks and the Control of the Internet

Op'Ed by Jérémie Zimmermann initially published in French in Mediapart

WikiLeaks has become the symbol of disturbing information that can't be stopped. Recent declarations and actions against the organization clearly expose the will of governments to control the Internet. From now on, it seems that both sides are fighting a battle that could be one of the most important that we must wage for the future of our democracies. On one side, those who would like to put the Internet under control, through administrative or privatized censorship, in order to remain in power. On the other, citizens of the word at large ready build networked societies in which the sharing of knowledge, freedom of expression and the increased transparency allowed for by the Internet must be protected and strengthened at all costs.

European Parliament: Who is For and Who is Against ACTA?

After last week's rejection of the joint resolution on the anti-Counterfeiting Tade Agreement (ACTA) by the European Parliament, and the adoption of a bad, pro-ACTA resolution tabled by the conservative EPP group, La Quadrature has analyzed the results of the vote. The final result of the vote was 306 for, and 322 against (with 26 abstentions). The results show an overall polarized poll, with the bulk of the political groups who tabled the resolution voting in favor (S&D, ALDE, Greens/EFA, EUL/NGL), while the Conservatives rejected it (EPP and ECR). But details show that some MEPs did not follow their group's position. The overall picture gives a clear view of who to convince in order to obtain a full rejection of ACTA during the upcoming consent vote.

The Pirate Bay Decision, or the Political Persecution of Sharing

The Internet, November 27th 2010 - The decision to sentence the co-founders of The Pirate Bay to jail is both absurd and unfair. It illustrates how an obsolete copyright law and its indiscrimate application are harmful to society as a whole. Such an incomprehension of technological, economic and social realities should not mask the fact that this decision is above all political.

European Parliament on its Way to Accept ACTA?

Paris, November 24th 2010 - The European Parliament has just adopted a resolution approving the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). The adopted text fails to criticize the elaboration process of ACTA and its potential impact on the online environment (including freedom of speech, privacy, innovation) and access to medicines. This vote is an invitation for citizens and civil society organizations to expose the illegitimacy and dangers of ACTA in order to convince a few additional MEPs to refuse to give their final consent to this agreement.

ACTA: Will The EU Parliament Give Up its Power?

Paris, November 23rd, 2010 -- After last week's release of the final version of the ACTA text, the European Parliament is about to adopt a resolution preparing the upcoming ratification process, during a plenary session scheduled tomorrow. This vote must be an opportunity for European lawmakers to restate their opposition to this agreement, which is bound to spread internationally some of the most extremist provisions regarding the civil and criminal enforcement of copyright, trademarks and patents.

The European Commission Must Act To Protect Net Neutrality

Paris, November 19th, 2010 – In a letter sent today to Commissioner Neelie Kroes, in charge of the Digital Agenda, La Quadrature du Net calls on the European Commission to take concrete steps to protect Net neutrality in the European Union. Following Mrs. Kroes' speech last week during the EU Net neutrality summit, the citizen advocacy group urges the Commission to engage with national regulatory authorities to ensure that the socio-economic benefits brought about by the Internet will be preserved. A long-awaited debate on which traffic management practices are acceptable and which are not, along with firm guidelines and enforcement, are urgently needed if our societies are to protect Net neutrality.

La Quadrature at the EU Net Neutrality Summit

Today, Jérémie Zimmermann, spokesperson of La Quadrature du Net, participates in the Net neutrality summit co-organized by the European Commission and the European Parliament in Brussels.

ACTA: An Outdated Agreement That Must Be Rejected

As the negotiations on ACTA come to a close, it is important to stress one more time the basic flaws of this dangerous anti-counterfeiting agreement, which compiles outdated and very controversial provisions from the United Stated and the European Union in the field of "intellectual property rights" (IPR). ACTA's bias and lack of legitimacy should compel the legislative bodies of the negotiating countries to strongly oppose its ratification and acknowledge the necessity to reform patent and copyright law.

La Quadrature Answers EU consultation on "Online Services Directive"

La Quadrature du Net just sent its response to the EU Commission's consultation on the online services directive, also called the e-Commerce directive.

Download the document in PDF.

Comment La Quadrature's Draft Response to the Internet Directive Consultation

Just one day before the final deadline of the e-Commerce (or Internet directive) consultation, La Quadrature du Net publishes the draft of its response.

Sarkozy Exports Repressive Internet


UPDATE (October 30th): Following the announcement by the Dutch Minister of Culture that he would not attend the conference, and would instead send an Ambassador to voice the opposition of the Dutch government to three-strikes schemes, the conference has been postponed to an undetermined date.

Why You Should Respond to the e-Commerce Consultation


There are only a few days left to answer the consultation. If you don't have enough time to answer the whole document, please consider responding at least to questions 56, 59, 60, 67, 69.
You can send your submission to markt-e-commerce@ec.europa.eu

The European Commission has launched a new public consultation on the future of the 2000 e-Commerce directive, which forms the basis of the Internet regulatory framework across the European Union. The reform of the e-Commerce directive is very important for rights and freedoms on the Internet, and all interested citizens and organizations should take the time to submit a response to the consultation by November 5th. By doing so, they can make sure that the democratizing potential of the Internet as well as the rule of law will be preserved.

Council of Europe Agrees That Net neutrality is Key to Freedom of Expression

On September 29th, 2010, the Committee of Ministers at the Council of Europe (CoE) adopted a declaration on network neutrality1. The declaration is overall a very good news for the protection of freedom of expression and communication in Europe. It is one more indication that governments are finally realizing the importance of the Internet's core architectural principles for the future of rights and freedoms in our democracies.

"Final" Version of ACTA Must be Rejected as a Whole

ACTA AS A BULLYING WEAPON FOR THE ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRIES

By putting legal and monetary pressure on Internet service providers (in a most subtler way than in previous versions of the text), ACTA will give the music and movie industries a weapon to force them to police their networks and users themselves. Such a private police and justice of the Net is incompatible with democratic imperatives and represent a real threat for fundamental freedoms.

Near-Final ACTA Text is a Counterfeit of Democracy

Paris, October 6th, 2010 - The ACTA negotiators have just released a near-final version of this anti-counterfeiting agreement. It is still very dangerous. The release of this text should not give the illusion of transparency by hiding the fact that the whole negotiation process was carried on out of public scrutiny. Moreover, ACTA could profoundly alter the Internet ecosystem by turning technical intermediaries into a copyright police of the Net.