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French Government Wants to Sacrifice Net Neutrality

Paris, 8 February 2011 – French Minister for Digital Economy, Éric Besson, has called for an end to Net Neutrality, a principle on which there seemed to be consensus among French and European decision-makers1. By giving telecom operators the possibility to sell prioritized access to the network, the government would put an end to equality among Internet users. Time after time, Nicolas Sarkozy's vision of the “Civilized Internet” that he is promoting at the G8/G20 level is coming to light: an Internet controlled by the State and by telecommunications and entertainment industries, while fundamental liberties are shunted to the side.

French LOPPSI Bill Adopted: The Internet under Control?

Paris, February 8th 2011 – Yesterday afternoon, the French Parliament voted the LOPPSI bill whose 4th article1 enables administrative censorship of the Internet, using child protection as a Trojan horse. Over time, such an extra-judiciary set-up will enable a generalized censorship of all Internet content. Consistent with Nicolas Sarkozy projects for a “Civilized Internet”, administrative censorship of the Internet opens the door to dangerous abuse while leaving pedophiles and pedo-pornography to prosper.

  • 1. “When the necessities of the fight against the distribution of images or representations of minors relative to the dispositions of article 227-23 of the Penal Code justify it, the administrative authority notifies the persons mentioned at 1[online access providers] of the Internet addresses to which these persons must at once block access to.”
    “A decree specifies the terms of application of the above paragraph, including those according to which online access providers are compensated, if necessary, for the additional costs resulting from the obligation made to said online access providers.”; Translated from the official text.

EU Commission Pushes For Private "Cooperation" Against Our Freedoms

On January 26th, two members of the European Parliament1 wrote to the Commission to ask about the ongoing “Stakeholder's Dialogue on Online Copyright Infringements” organized by the EU Commission (DG Internal Market2). For more than a year, the Commission has been convening regular meetings with the copyright lobbies and Internet Service Providers (telecoms operators, hosting platforms and search engines) in order to foster “cooperation” between them. But under the guise of “cooperation”, and under the threat of legislation, the Commission and rights-holders are pressuring ISPs to become the private copyright police of the Internet.

LQDN at the EU Commission's Ad Hoc Meeting on ACTA

Today, La Quadrature du Net is attending the European Commission's meeting on the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA).

In Defense of Free Culture in Brazil

La Quadrature reproduces an open letter by the Brazilian civil society (dates December 28th, 2010). Many Brazilians worry that the ongoing changes at the Ministry of Culture will jeopardize the progressive policies put in place by Gilberto Gil, when he was head of the Ministry (2003-2008) and its successor Juca Ferreira (2008-2011).

European Commission Plans for All-Out War Against Sharing

The European Commission just launched a new consultation on its disastrously dogmatic report on IPRED, a directive on the enforcement of intellectual property rights, adopted by the EU in 2004. The report -- whose logic is similar to ACTA -- is based on an analysis of the application of IPRED. It calls for the massive filtering of the Internet to tackle file-sharing: according to the Commission, Internet Service Providers (ISPs) should "cooperate" in the war against sharing to avoid the threat of litigation.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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