Press review selection

[] Policing the Internet?

Policymakers worldwide are at loggerheads over how to crack down on cyber-criminals, unlawful content and illegal downloading. But laws have been slow to arrive as legislators try to reconcile fundamental rights and Internet security.

Internet security has become a priority as by 2020, Brussels wants all Europeans to have high-speed broadband.

"By creating legal uncertainty for the Internet operators, ACTA will force them to bend under the pressure of entertainment industries. ACTA will compel Internet service providers to filter and remove content and services, turning them into private police and justice auxiliaries," according to Jérémie Zimmermann , spokesperson for citizens' advocacy group La Quadrature du Net .

[NYTimes] Disagreements on Transparency Fail to Stop ACTA Treaty Leak

Disagreements between the European Union and the U.S. over whether to release the current negotiating text of a secretive international copyright treaty became moot this week, with the publication on a French website of a leaked version of the latest draft of the treaty.

The leaked document, dated July 1, is labeled as an "informal predecisional deliberative draft" of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) reflecting changes made during negotiations held in Lucerne, Switzerland, late last month, according to its title page.

French advocacy group La Quadrature du Net posted the document, a collection of scanned images in PDF format, to its website on Wednesday, and immediately began transcribing it into a searchable text format in a Wiki.

[Slashdot] Latest Version of ACTA Leaks

"Drew Wilson of ZeroPaid points to a freshly leaked version of ACTA available on La Quadrature Du Net. While the text will need further analysis, the most recent look at the text suggests that there is no Three Strikes law, but anti-circumvention laws have a new twist to them with regard to exceptions in that 'they do not significantly impair the adequacy of legal protection [...] or the effectiveness of legal remedies for violations of those measures.' Overall, the text still hints at a global DMCA with notice-and-takedown."

[FutureZone] ACTA-Vertragstext erneut durchgesickert

Die französische Bürgerrechtsorganisation La Quadrature du Net hat den konsolidierten Text des umstrittenen Anti-Piraterie-Abkommens Anti Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) auf seiner Website veröffentlicht. Die Unterhändler hatten sich geweigert, den Text öffentlich zu machen.

Auf dem als "EU Restricted" gekennzeichneten Dokument sind auch die Positionen der Verhandlungsparteien verzeichnet. Das Dokument spiegelt den Stand der Verhandlungen nach der jüngsten Runde in Luzern wider. Es ist mit hoher Wahrscheinlichkeit authentisch, denn seit dieser Woche können EU-Parlamentarier in einem gesicherten Leseraum das Dokument einsehen, womit es den exklusiven Kreis der Unterhändler verlassen hat. Die französischen Bürgerrechtler hatten bereits den ersten durchgesickerten ACTA-Text der Öffentlichkeit zugänglich gemacht.

[LeMondeDiplomatique] What’s ours will stay that way

Secret talks between rich countries created the new Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, sidetracking legitimate international forums to establish a new world order in intellectual property

The internet, which for ACTA supporters is a place of “piracy”, is particularly targeted. For the Motion Picture Association of America, ACTA “represents… an important step forward in the work of like-minded governments to strengthen protection against internet piracy, the fastest-growing threat to filmed entertainment and other segments of the copyright industries”.

[DailyTech] EU's Secret Plan to Imprison Filesharers, Ban Free Speech About Piracy Leaks

A UK Intellectual Property Office representative made an important revelation to online publication ComputerActive, commenting, "ACTA should not introduce new intellectual property laws or offences. Instead, it should provide a framework to better enforce existing law."

The new proposal would criminalize "infringements that have no direct or indirect motivation of financial gain" -- which currently would be considered a petty civil offense in most countries. [...]

Jérémie Zimmermann, spokesperson for La Quadrature du Net comments , "The ACTA agreement, by its opacity and undemocratic nature, allows criminal sanctions to be simply negotiated. The leaked document shows that the EU Member States are willing to impose prison sanctions for non-commercial usages of copyrighted works on the Internet as well as for 'inciting and aiding', a notion so broad that it could cover any Internet service or speech questioning copyright policies."

[TorrentFreak] UK Rejects ACTA Calls To Criminalize Illicit File-Sharing

A leaked ACTA document published by citizen advocacy group La Quadrature du Net revealed the intention to introduce criminal sanctions into the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) for file-sharing offenses.

“The ACTA agreement, by its opacity and undemocratic nature, allows criminal sanctions to be simply negotiated,” commented Jérémie Zimmermann, spokesperson for La Quadrature du Net. “The leaked document shows that the EU Member States are willing to impose prison sanctions for non-commercial usages of copyrighted works on the Internet as well as for ‘inciting and aiding’, a notion so broad that it could cover any Internet service or speech questioning copyright policies.”

As noted by Zimmermann, the ACTA text includes proposals to apply criminal sanctions to “infringements that have no direct or indirect motivation of financial gain”. There are suggestions that “financial gain” could simply be obtaining anything without paying.

[eWeekEurope] Rights Group Opposes ACTA Proceedings

French advocacy group La Quadrature du Net is asking people to sign an open letter, opposing the proposed terms of the ACTA treaty

La Quadrature calls on decision-makers to rethink copyright from scratch to allow democratic participation and sharing of information, while guaranteeing fundamental freedoms. It also demands a rethink of the patent system.

Whatever the final text will be after the next negotiation rounds, the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) will remain an illegitimate agreement, by its elaboration process (beyond any democratic control) as well as its content,” the group states.

[ComputerActive] UK opposes criminal sanctions for copyright infringement

The UK Government said it will oppose international moves to criminalise illegal file sharing, Computeractive has learned.

A document leaked by French advocacy group La Quadrature du Net shows that EU negotiators want criminal sanctions introduced into the international Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (Acta).

"The UK is opposed to the creation of new criminal offences at UK or EU level through Acta,” a representative for the UK’s Intellectual Property Office (IPO) told Computeractive.

[ReportersWithoutBorders] As ACTA talks resume, new leak confirms fears about threat to online free expression

As 40 or so countries begin a new round of talks about the proposed Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) in the Swiss city of Lucerne today, Reporters Without Borders urges the negotiators not to sacrifice Internet free speech and access to online information to the desire to combat piracy and the counterfeiting of copyrighted works.

[...] fears have been reinforced by the leak of a document from the office of the president of the European Council dated 7 April that has been posted on the website of La Quadrature du Net, a citizen’s collective [...]

La Quadrature du Net spokesman Jérémie Zimmermann said these were such broad concepts that they could cover almost any Internet services or comments that call copyright policies into question.,37824.html

[IP-Watch] Scope Of Anti-Counterfeiting Agreement Again A Big Issue In Round Nine

The staid little Swiss town of Lucerne this week sees round number nine of the negotiations for an Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). [...]

Besides the Berne Declaration, Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors without Borders), ACT UP Paris,[...] La Quadrature du Net [...] and also representatives of the Washington College of Law who recently published an Urgent ACTA Communique, will participate in the 1.5 hour exchange with some of the ACTA delegations on Monday.[...]

[...] In a joint statement of the European associations of fixed and mobile telecoms operators, European internet service providers, cable companies and digital media organisations two weeks ago they warned that ACTA was in conflict with the mere-conduit principle of the EU E-Commerce directive “by subordinating the safe-harbour exception to other policy goals.” [...]

[] Leaked ACTA document reveals push for criminal sanctions

A leaked document published by French advocacy group La Quadrature du Net shows that European Union member states are pushing for criminal sanctions to be added to the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) on copyright infringement.

"The leaked document shows that EU member states are willing to impose prison sanctions for non-commercial uses of copyrighted works on the internet as well as for 'inciting and aiding', a notion so broad it could cover any internet service or speech questioning copyright policies," said Jérémie Zimmermann, co-founder of La Quadrature du Net.

[] ACTA leak shows the evil within

A document leaked from the Presidency of the EU reveals moves to push criminal sanctions into the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), just days ahead of the next round of negotiations.

The document published online here, by citizen advocacy group la Quadrature du Net shows how unelected lofficials are attempting to criminalise some copyright infringement activities, even where no financial motivation is demonstrable.

Jérémie Zimmermann, spokesperson for La Quadrature du Net adds his voice to the chorus of disapproval, stating: "[...] The leaked document shows that the EU Member States are willing to impose prison sanctions for non-commercial usages of copyrighted works on the Internet as well as for 'inciting and aiding', [...]

[Publico.Es] EEUU y la UE quieren que las operadoras vigilen Internet

El acuerdo internacional contra la piratería, cuyas negociaciones eran hasta ayer secretas, pretende convertir a las compañías que ofrecen conexión a Internet en el brazo ejecutor de las sociedades de derechos de autor. El acuerdo, conocido por las siglas ACTA, será suscrito "antes de final de este año", según fuentes de la negociación, en la que, además de la Unión Europea, participan once países, incluyendo a Estados Unidos, Japón y Corea del Sur.

Libertad de expresión

Además de la creciente responsabilidad de los operadores, ACTA prevé la persecución de los "intermediarios cuyos servicios estén siendo usados para violar la propiedad intelectual" como medida preventiva. Este aspecto "pone en el punto de mira la libertad de expresión y la innovación", opina Jérémie Zimmermann, cofundador de la asociación La Quadrature du Net. Según él, "la redacción es tan vaga que se me puede aplicar si dejo un comentario en un blog, al creador de un programa P2P como BitTorrent o al fundador de una red social, que tendría que rastrear el contenido generado por los usuarios".

[ZDNet] Acta copyright treaty draft gets first public airing

A draft copy of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement has been officially released for the first time, confirming leaks that outlined the treaty's provisions to counter file-sharing and circumvention of digital rights management.

La Quadrature du Net, the French group that published the leaked version of the pre-Wellington draft, said in a statement that the release "does not legitimise the content of Acta, as transparency is no excuse for political laundering and the circumvention of democratic processes".
"This release of the text shows how effective the massive mobilisation of citizens around the world can be," La Quad chief Jérémie Zimmermann said. "All the leaks have shown that Acta could dangerously hinder freedom of expression, access to medicines and innovation in the global knowledge society. This official release suggests that it is still the case."

The bodies in negotation over Acta have said they intend to reach a final version by the end of this year.

[ComputerWeekly] EU draft anti-counterfeiting deal threatens free speech, health and safety, say critics

The European Parliament has published the draft text of the controversial anti-counterfeiting trade agreement (Acta) which promises new sanctions against people who download copyright material.

The text aims to get principles of the US Digital Millennium Copyright Act written into international law. It includes "special measures related to technological enforcement of intellectual property in the digital environment". These include "technical measures" such as bandwidth reduction, blocking and account termination of alleged infringing internet users.

Digital lobby group La Quadrature du Net said publication of the text did not legitimise it. "Transparency is no excuse for political laundering and the circumvention of democratic processes," it said in a statement.

La Quadrature co-founder Jérémie Zimmermann said leaks (first published on whistleblower website Wikileaks) had shown that Acta could "dangerously hinder" freedom of expression, access to medicines and innovation throughout the world.

[BoingBoing] ACTA arrives (still bad, but a tiny bit better)

We've been covering the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) for two years now, and in that entire 24 month period no official text of the agreement has been released. Remarkable, really, given the intense scrutiny, but there you have it. [...]

(ndlqdn: on page 3) I contacted Jérémie Zimmermann, who heads French advocacy group La Quadrature du Net, to get his perspective. [...]
While admitting that transparency is "an important step," Zimmermann says that "all previous leaks showed provisions incredibly dangerous for our fundamental rights, the rule of law, the internet, access to medication, and innovation." And he loathes the fact that such changes are being pushed through a trade agreement, not the Parliament.

[] EEUU y la UE ultiman el acuerdo antipiratería

El grupo de países ACTA publica su primer borrador tras tres años negociando [...]

"así será posible dejar de discutir filtraciones e ir al fondo", asegura Jérémie Zimmermann, co-fundador de La Quadrature du Net, una de las asociaciones europeas más movilizadas. "La presión comienza a ser muy fuerte, pero no nos fiamos"

[DCTP-tv] Interview of Jérémie Zimmermann about ACTA

Interview of Jérémie Zimmermann about ACTA on DCTP-tv the 15th april 2010 in Berlin, during re:publica 2010 :

[theinquirer] Stop the anti-counterfeiting trade agreement

THIS WEEK a round of talks will take place in Wellington, New Zealand that could see Internet service providers turn into web police, charged with fighting copyright infringement.

In the light of this La Quadrature du Net, the French web liberty group, has issued a call to arms to netizens, asking them to put the "Stop ACTA!" alert graphic on their websites and sign the anti-ACTA Wellington declaration. [...]

"There is no way of influencing or checking the work of the ACTA negotiators," said Jérémie Zimmermann, spokesperson for La Quadrature du Net. "All the leaks show that their intent is to push for tougher sanctions on citizens and more legal insecurity over Internet actors."

[DziennikInternautów] ACTA: antypirackie porozumienie ujawnione!

Wielu Czytelnikom Dziennika Internautów nie trzeba przedstawiać ACTA. O porozumieniu tym pisaliśmy od roku 2008. ACTA, czyli Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, ma być międzynarodowym porozumieniem dotyczącym szeroko rozumianej własności intelektualnej. Obejmuje takie zagadnienia, jak podrabianie towarów, patenty, piractwo w internecie. 

Grupa La Quadrature du Net zwróciła uwagę na to, że ujawnienie szkicu dokumentu to ważne wydarzenie, ale nie usprawiedliwia ono prób obejścia procesu demokratycznego.

- To wydanie pokazuje, jak efektywna może być masowa mobilizacja obywateli na całym globie. Wszystkie wycieki pokazały, że ACTA może niebezpiecznie utrudniać wolność wypowiedzi, dostęp do leków i innowacje w globalnym społeczeństwie wiedzy. To oficjalne wydanie sugeruje, że to nadal jest problemem. Musimy mocno sprzeciwić się niewybieranym oficjelom w opracowywaniu ich własnej polityki, która ma wpływ na ważne kwestie społeczne - mówi Jérémie Zimmermann, rzecznik grupy La Quadrature du Net.,0,ACTA_antypirackie_porozumienie_ujawnione.html

[FutureZone] ACTA: Vor dem Ende des Geheimniskrams

Die Vertreter der EU-Kommission wollen bei der nächsten geheimen Verhandlungsrunde zum "Anti-Piraterie"-Abkommen ACTA die Offenlegung der Verhandlungen fordern.

"Der Vertreter des Generaldirektorats Handel und Chefunterhändler der EU für das ACTA-Abkommen, Luc Devigne, bemühte sich nach Kräften, die gestellten Fragen nicht zu beantworten. Was Herr Devigne nicht sagte, war aussagekräftiger, als was er sagte", schrieb Jeremie Zimmermann von der französischen Bürgerrechtsorganisation La Quadrature du Net.

Auch bei diesem von der Kommission einberufenen Interessenträgertreffen zum umstrittenen "Anti-Piraterie"-Abkommen waren inhaltliche Auskünfte Mangelware. Das ist nichts Neues, sondern die von Beginn der Verhandlungen an praktizierte Geheimhaltungspolitik.

[Heise] EU-Kommission: Keine Three-Strikes-Regelung in ACTA

Wie steht es nun um das Handelsabkommen ACTA? Um Gerüchten zu begegnen und zumindest einen Schritt zu mehr Transparenz zu machen, hat die EU-Kommission am Montag zu einer Konsultation nach Brüssel eingeladen. Viel erfuhren die etwa 150 angereisten Interessenvertreter nicht. Gerüchte wollte Kommissionsvertreter Luc Devigne ausdrücklich nicht besprechen, er versicherte aber, dass das umstrittene Abkommen keine Änderung substantiellen Rechts in der EU vorsehe.

Die in Brüssel anwesenden Bürgerrechtsorganisationen gingen mit Devigne hart ins Gericht. Jérémie Zimmermann von der französischen Organisation La Quadrature du Net kritisierte, dass Devigne in seiner Präsentation eine von der Industrie finanzierte Studie zitierte, wonach durch Diebstahl geistigen Eigentums bis 2015 in Europa 1,2 Millionen Arbeitsplätze verloren gehen könnten. Diese Studie basiere auf der Legende, dass für jede unbezahlte Kopie ein Original weniger verkauft werde, argumentierte Zimmermann.

Gegenüber heise online erklärte Zimmermann: "Heute haben wir nichts Neues erfahren" – die Kommission verstecke sich hinter dem "acquis communautaire", der freilich stark interpretierbar sei. So sieht Zimmermann die Gefahr, dass die Three-Strikes-Regel zwar nicht explizit im ACTA-Abkommen festgelegt werde, die Provider könnten aber durch erweiterte gesetzliche Haftungsregeln im Zuge der freiwilligen Selbstkontrolle zu einer eigenständigen Einführung des Modells gezwungen werden. [...]

[] EU defends itself from attack on ACTA

The European Commission attempted to dispel rumours today (22 March) regarding draconian new anti-counterfeiting laws being negotiated under the global Anti-Counterfeiting and Trade Agreement (ACTA) talks.

The head of intellectual property and public procurement at the European Commission's trade unit, Luc Devigne, said the executive would try to convince its negotiating partners (see 'Background') to release the draft text being written at the ACTA talks.

"We have nothing to hide," Devigne insisted.[...]

"There will be no three strikes, there will be no change to the liability of Internet service providers, there will be full respect of data privacy and no provisions on customs searches," Devigne said, addressing what he termed as "rumours" of the kind of laws ACTA is writing.

[EurActiv] Parliament threatens court action on anti-piracy treaty

The European Parliament defied the EU executive today (10 March), casting a vote against an agreement between the EU, the US and other major powers on combating online piracy and threatening to take legal action at the European Court of Justice. [...]

Leaked ACTA drafts have shown that the agreement would allow Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to introduce sanctions against Internet users, provided the consumer is informed of the penalties in the contract, argues La Quadrature du Net, an NGO campaigning for the rights and freedoms of citizens on the Internet [...]

"Building on this milestone towards democratic transparency, citizens must urge MEPs to sign the written declaration in order to oppose measures in ACTA that endanger the open nature of the Internet," said Jérémie Zimmermann, spokesperson for citizens' advocacy group La Quadrature du Net.

[BoingBoing] Ask your MEPs to support anti-ACTA motion

Jeremie writes,

"The written declaration 12/2010 regarding the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) is now open for signatures. [...]

A dedicated campaign page has been set up to allow EU citizens to participate in collecting the signatures of the majority of the Members of the European Parliament. [...]

[] European Parliament joins ACTA protests

Officials call for more MEPs to sign declaration against ACTA secrecy

Four members of the European Parliament have launched a public protest against the Anti Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), registering their discontent with secret negotiations undertaken by the European Union, the US and other leading countries since 2007. [...]

"The adoption of the written declaration will send a strong message to the Commission and Member States that the European Parliament will not let EU citizens' freedoms be undermined by opaque diplomatic negotiations," said Jérémie Zimmermann, co-founder of French digital rights group La Quadrature du Net.

"Every citizen and non-governmental organisation concerned about ACTA can participate by calling MEPs and urging them to sign the declaration." (ndlqdn: '12/2010') [...]

[ElMundo.Es] España lleva a la UE un documento que mezcla propiedad intelectual con pornografía infantil y xenofobia

"¿Cómo combatir las violaciones de la propiedad intelectual y los contenidos xenófobos y racistas y de pornografía infantil en Internet?" Esta es la pregunta que la Presidencia española de la UE hace a sus socios comunitarios en un documento (PDF) que los ministros de Justicia de la UE van a discutir de manera informal hoy.

Las asociaciones de activistas de Internet Red SOStenible y La Quadrature du Net denunciaron ayer en un comunicado que España ha enviado al consejo de la Unión Europea un documento en el que "se equiparan a la brocha gorda la pedofilía, la propaganda fundamentalista y xenófoba y la vulneración de la propiedad intelectual".

[TheInquirer] World going barmy over copyright enforcement

IT IS NOT CLEAR how accurate it is yet but someone has posted a copy of what appears to be the crucial enforcement section of the secret copyright treaty that the publishing cartels want the world to accept. [...]

According to citizen advocacy group La Quadrature du Net the draft would constitute caving in to the entertainment corporations' demands and profoundly alter the structure of the Internet.
"This document shows that ACTA would impose regulations tailored by US entertainment industries to the Internet," said Jérémie Zimmermann, spokesperson of La Quadrature du Net. [...]

[CNet] Skype in a struggle to be heard on mobile phones

BARCELONA, Spain--Josh Silverman, the chief executive of Skype, the voice over Internet phone service, could tick off the names of mobile phone operators that block his company's service.
But for Silverman, a 41-year-old Michigan native, it is quicker to name those that allow it, no strings attached.
"The two operators that have really embraced us are 3 in Europe and Verizon Wireless in the United States," Silverman said Wednesday at the Mobile World Congress, the industry's annual convention, in Barcelona. "But we are making progress, and operators are beginning to change their attitudes." [...]

"Such practices illustrate how operators' business models based on control and discrimination of data flows really harm competition as well as the fundamental freedom of communication allowed by Internet," said Jérémie Zimmermann, the director of La Quadrature du Net, a group in Paris that opposes efforts to control public access to the Internet. [...]

[NYTimes] Skype in a Struggle to Be Heard on Mobile Phones

BARCELONA, Spain — Josh Silverman, the chief executive of Skype, the voice-over-Internet phone service, could tick off the names of mobile phone operators that block his company’s service. [...]

However, the barriers to Skype and similar Internet calling services, like Google Voice, are coming under increasing scrutiny as the Internet goes mobile. By 2013, the number of Internet-ready mobile phones will surpass the number of computers in the world for the first time, according to Gartner, a research firm.

“Such practices illustrate how operators’ business models based on control and discrimination of data flows really harm competition as well as the fundamental freedom of communication allowed by Internet,” said Jérémie Zimmermann, the director of La Quadrature du Net, a group in Paris that opposes efforts to control public access to the Internet.

[ArsTechnica] Move over, Australia: France taking 'Net censorship lead

Critics of government-mandated filtering schemes contend that such programs first focus on "child pornography" because it's such an unobjectionable target for censorship—but once the program is in place, it's much easier to extend it to more controversial areas, such as copyright protection. At least the French have the decency to admit that this is what's happening.

The French lower house, the National Assembly, has just passed a security bill known as LOPPSI2, [...]

As for France, plenty of heated opposition can be found there as well. Jérémie Zimmermann of Internet rights group La Quadrature du Net said last week, "Protection of childhood is shamelessly exploited by Nicolas Sarkozy to implement a measure that will lead to collateral censorship and very dangerous drifts. After the HADOPI comes the LOPPSI: the securitarian machinery of the government is being deployed in an attempt to control the Internet at the expense of freedoms."

Censorship... it's not just for authoritarian states anymore. Such issues are increasingly part of the discourse in democracies, including Indonesia, the most populous Muslim-majority democracy. [...]

[V3.Co.Uk] Iceland set for boost to online freedoms

A document will be submitted to the Icelandic parliament tomorrow that has the potential to bring the country's inhabitants stronger online freedoms than anywhere else in Europe.

"In the UK a letter from a lawyer can cause any content to be removed from a web site, but if this initiative is adopted in Iceland a legal letter would have to be sent to a judge before any web site content is taken down," said Jérémie Zimmermann, co-founder of citizens' rights group La Quadrature du Net.

Zimmermann pointed to the contrast between Iceland's move to online transparency and the UK's attempt to ban illegal downloaders from the internet.

[TheInquirer] France falls under Internet censorship

THE FRENCH PARLIAMENT has buckled under pressure and approved the Sarkozy government's authoritarian plans to censor the Internet.

The government opposed all objections to its plans to filter Internet sites, which have been controversial throughout French society. Today La Quadrature du Net, a French openness group, said that the action would give the government total control over its citizens' access to the Internet. It added that Nicholas Sarkozy was using excuses to clear a path for his rules, which ultimately would come at the expense of liberty.

Jérémie Zimmermann, a spokesperson for La Quadrature du Net, said that any censorship should have been trialled before being approved, explaining, "The refusal to enact Net filtering as an experimental measure is a proof of the ill-intended objective of the government. Making Net filtering a temporary measure would have shown that it is uneffective to fight child pornography."

[ComputerWeekly] Google slams French plans to tax online news aggregators

A French proposal to tax online advertising revenues to subsidise struggling newspapers and music companies has drawn fire from the internet community.

The proposal was contained in a government-sponsored research paper following claims that news aggregators such as Google, Microsoft, AOL, Yahoo and Facebook are profiting from their work without paying for it.

Internet activist Quadrature du Net said the tax would make all taxpayers pay for "out of date businesses".

In a separate response to a European Commission consultation on creative content in the digital age, it said the authorities should seek to "reorganise the internet-based creative economy around the emancipatory practices enabled by new technologies, such as the sharing and re-use of creative works."

[EurActiv] Brussels denies rumours of secret anti-piracy treaty

An upcoming global trade agreement on copyright and counterfeiting, known as ACTA, will not rewrite EU rules on the liability of internet service providers, a leading European Commission official told EurActiv, denying media reports that suggest otherwise. [...]

La Quadrature du Net, a web pressure group, maintains that ACTA will create legal uncertainty for ISPs, which will start to self-censor what happens on their networks and "bend under the pressure of the entertainment industries". [...]

"By creating legal uncertainty for the internet operators, ACTA will force them to bend under the pressure of entertainment industries. ACTA will compel internet service providers to filter and remove content and services, turning them into private police and justice auxiliaries. We cannot tolerate that restrictions to fundamental rights and freedoms be imposed by private actors. Such a modification of criminal law by governments themselves, in total opacity, shows how much the people behind ACTA hate democracy," according to Jérémie Zimmermann, spokesperson for citizens' advocacy group La Quadrature du Net.

[EFF] Blogging ACTA Across The Globe: The View from France

La Quadrature Du Net is a French advocacy group formed to promote digital rights and online freedom. Its name comes by analogy between the unsolvable mathematical problem of "squaring the circle", and similarly impossible attempts to "effectively control the flow of information in the digital age by the law and the technology without harming public freedoms, and damaging economic and social development". In our ongoing series of perspectives on ACTA from around the globe, today Jérémie Zimmermann and Félix Tréguer of La Quadrature du Net describe how the trade agreement undermines democratic challenges to IP policies in France and beyond. [...]

[Computeractive.Co.Uk] Liberal Democrats lambast secrecy of anti-counterfeit deal.

The Liberal Democrats have demanded that Lord Mandelson let MPs know what is being decided under the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (Acta).

[...] Mr Zimmermann said: "Unelected negotiators - carrying out the orders of the entertainment industries - are attacking the very essence of the internet."

[HoyTecnologia] Denuncian la "opacidad" del encuentro internacional contra piratería en México

La Asociación de Internautas (AI) ha denunciado hoy la "opacidad" con la que un grupo de países --EEUU, la Unión Europea y Japón, entre otros-- reunidos en México desde hoy y hasta el 29 de enero están llevando las negociaciones sobre un futuro Tratado Comercial Anti-Falsificación (ACTA, por sus siglas en inglés), que, a su juicio, "está dirigido a controlar Internet".

Asimismo, AI denuncia que el ACTA obliga a los operadores a aceptar las restricciones de acceso a Internet al hacerlos responsables de las violaciones del 'copyright' de sus usuarios. "ACTA obligará a los proveedores de servicio de Internet a filtrar y eliminar contenidos y servicios, convirtiéndolos en una policía privada y en auxiliares de justicia", señala el portavoz del grupo La Quadrature du Net Jérémie Zimmermann.

[Rsf.Org] Threat to online free expression from imminent international accord.

Reporters Without Borders is very concerned about the threat to online free expression from measures to combat digital piracy and copyright violations in an Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) that is currently being negotiated. [...]

The European Parliament has not even had access to the negotiating documents. [...]

Read and sign the open letter to the European Parliament that has been signed by Quadrature du Net, Reporters Without Borders, Electronic Frontier Foundation, Consumers International, ASIC and some 30 other NGOs.

[Futurezone] France: Medienindustrie will massive Subventionen

Das am 1. Jänner 2010 in Kraft getretene Internet-Sperrgesetz "Loi HADOPI" ist Frankreichs Medienindustrie nicht genug. Sie will, dass die Regierung Google und andere Suchmaschinenanbieter sowie die Internet-Provider mit Sondersteuern belegt, die vor allem an die Musikindustrie fließen sollen. Bürgerrechtler sprechen von einem "Krieg gegen die User".


Ganz anders sieht das die französische Netzbürgerrechtsorganisation La Quadrature du Net. In einer Mitteilung vom Donnerstag schrieb sie, es sei "nahezu obszön", der Medienindustrie in großem Umfang Subventionen zukommen zu lassen, damit diese ihre überalterten und kaputten Geschäftsmodelle weiter aufrechterhalten könne.


[FayerWayer] México: Secretaría de Economía convoca a una consulta pública sobre ACTA

El Acuerdo Comercial Anti-Falsificación (ACTA por sus siglas en inglés) es la propuesta de un acuerdo comercial multilateral para el establecimiento de normas internacionales sobre la aplicación de los derechos de propiedad intelectual, especialmente en las economías emergentes.

Una filtración de los documentos de ACTA demuestran que uno de los principales objetivos del tratado entre los países signatarios, es la lucha bajo la forma de los “tres strikes” (conocida en Francia como HADOPI) contra el intercambio de archivos y una disposición donde los proveedores de servicios Internet (ISP) proporcionarían información (sin orden judicial) sobre presuntos infractores de derechos de autor.

“En un momento en donde los debates importantes se están produciendo sobre la necesidad de adaptar los derechos de autor a la era digital, este tratado estaría eludiendo los procesos democráticos para hacer cumplir un régimen de regulación fundamentalmente irrelevante. Se alteraría profundamente la propia naturaleza de Internet como la conocemos, poniendo fin a la neutralidad de la red – La Quadrature du Net

[Publico.Es] Francia lanza un aparato de propaganda contra las descargas

El Ministerio de Cultura francés ha lanzado un concurso público para encontrar la agencia publicitaria capaz de cumplir una misión que se plantea complicada: que los usuarios acepten la tarea de la futura autoridad antidescargas, que consiste en delatar a los que obtienen y comparten en la Red archivos sujetos a derechos de autor. La noticia, publicada por, ha caído como una bomba entre los internautas, que han combatido contra la ley Creación e Internet que instaura la Hadopi.

Los sondeos realizados durante la tramitación de la Hadopi demostraron que parte de la opinión pública era hostil a su implantación. Asociaciones como La Quadrature du Net y la Ligue Odebit realizaron informes en los que apuntaban a que la legislación represiva con los internautas protegía, sobre todo, los intereses de las grandes multinacionales. La formulación escogida por el Ministerio parece destinada a zanjar el debate, produciéndose en un momento en el que un número creciente de artistas franceses empiezan a posicionarse contra la Hadopi y a favor del libre intercambio.

La Comisión Nacional de Informática y Libertades (CNIL), autoridad de protección de datos, está negándose a proporcionar al Gobierno francés su dictamen sobre un decreto relativo a la ley Hadopi. Sin él, el Ejecutivo no puede comenzar a actuar contra los que descargan. | The global threat of Internet freedom

Internetna svoboda je bila leta 2009 na hudi preizkušnji. Francija je po dolgotrajnih zapletih vendarle potrdila svoj »protipiratski« zakon HADOPI, ki uvaja možnost odklapljanja priključkov uporabnikom spleta, ki jih trikrat zalotijo pri prenašanju zakonsko zavarovanih avtorskih del. Podobne zakone so napovedali v še nekaj državah članicah Evropske unije.

»Zdaj še lahko trdijo, da so proti odklapljanju,« pravi Jeremie Zimmermann, predstavnik francoske nevladne organizacije za obrambo spletne svobode La Quadrature du Net. Kaj bo po podpisu sporazuma, pa je druga stvar. Ob tem dodaja, da bi utegnil sporazum ACTA vsebovati blažja določila glede omejevanja dostopa do spleta, na primer kazensko zmanjšanje hitrosti prenosa, preprečitev uporabljanja nekaterih spletnih protokolov (npr. P2P) ali dostopa do nekaterih strani. Težko namreč verjame, da si bo po nočni mori, ki so jo francoski politiki doživljali zaradi zakona HADOPI, še katera izmed držav drznila uzakonjati možnost popolnega odklopa.

[ComputerAct!ve] Copyright infringement plans anger civil rights groups

Opposition is growing to proposals on tackling counterfeit goods and copyright infringement. Consumer and civil liberties groups, as well as trade organisations, say measures proposed during secret trade talks threaten to undermine people's rights.

US government documents have been leaked from talks about the Anti-Counterfeit Trade Agreement (ACTA). This agreement is meant to be “about tackling activities pursued by criminal organisations”, but the documents show that proposals could go much further.

Civil rights group La Quadrature du Net warned that the proposals also include criminal sanctions.

Jérémie Zimmermann of the organisation warned: “It is all being done in secret with no democratic oversight at all.”

Consumer and civil rights organisations around the world have written to the European Parliament to protest the clauses clauses in ACTA.

[] Bürgerrechtler: Offener Brief gegen ACTA

Ein internationaler Verbund von Bürgerrechtlern hat sich mit einem offenen Brief zum Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) an die EU-Kommission und das Europaparlament gewandt. Ihre Forderung: Die geheimen Verhandlungen mit den USA seien sofort zu öffnen. [...]

Die Unterzeichnerorganisationen, zu denen auch die Bürgerrechtsgruppen La Quadrature du Net, und EDRi sowie der Konsumentenschützer-Dachverband Consumers International (mit Mitgliedern in 115 Staaten) gehören, bezeichnen ACTA als "weltweite Bedrohung für die Freiheit". [...]

La Quadrature du Net wies am Mittwoch darauf hin, dass das EU-Parlament derzeit auch an einem Bericht zu einer Mitteilung der EU-Kommission zum Thema "Durchsetzung geistiger Eigentumsrechte" arbeite.[...]

[Boingboing] Organizations: sign onto letter opposing secret copyright treaty!

French activist Jérémie Zimmerman sez,

A worldwide coalition of Non-Governmental Organizations, consumers unions and online service providers associations publish an open letter to the European institutions regarding the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) currently under negotiation. They call on the European Parliament and the EU negotiators to oppose any provision into the multilateral agreement that would undermine the fundamental rights and freedoms of citizens in Europe and across the world.

By December 17th, 2009, European negotiators will submit their position regarding the proposal put forward by the U.S Trade Representative for the Internet chapter of the ACTA. [...]

The first signatories of the open letter include: Consumers International (world federation of 220 consumer groups in 115 countries), EDRi (27 European civil rights and privacy NGOs), the Free Software Foundation v(FSF), [...] The letter is open for signature by other organizations.

[ComputerWeekly] Anti-counterfeit deal breaks EU privacy, free speech laws, MEPs told

Consumer and civil rights organisations around the world have asked the European Parliament to oppose clauses in the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (Acta) that permit authorities to bar internet users from sharing files.

European negotiators are due to present their response to a US proposal on policing the internet for illegal file-sharing on 17 December.

"It is now time for the European Union to firmly oppose the dangerous measures secretly being negotiated, such as 'three strikes' schemes and content filtering on the internet," said La Quadrature du Net, one of the signatories to an open letter sent to the European Parliament.

The letter said it appeared that Acta went far beyond current EU law. It said a recent analysis by the European Commission of the Acta chapter on the internet confirmed that the current proposals "would profoundly restrict the fundamental rights and freedoms of European citizens, most notably the freedom of expression and communication privacy".

The signatories also objected to the fact that European Parliamentarians had been denied access to the negotiating documents, but commercial US firms had had access to them under non-disclosure rules.

[EUobserver] EU's secretive anti-piracy talks cause concern

"The US wants Acta to force ISPs [Internet Service Providers] to put in place policies to deter unauthorized storage and transmission of IP [Intellectual Property] infringing content (for example clauses in customers' contracts allowing a graduated response)" [...]

The Acta talks are taking place outside all existing multilateral treaty-making bodies such as the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), the UN or the WTO. They are also taking place in extreme secrecy, making it impossible for elected politicians, media or the public to get access to official documents. [...]

"Acta continues its career as the most shocking circumvention of democratic governance in the already long history of copyright and patent regulation," Jeremie Zimmerman from the France-based internet freedom pressure group, La Quadrature du Net, has said.

"The interest groups and fundamentalists of property on information, culture and knowledge are trying to find hidden paths, such as multilateral agreements, for co-operating governments to push forward their agendas in complete secrecy."

[EUObserver] Europe winning the battle against online piracy?

EUOBSERVER / CONFERENCE REPORT - The war against online piracy has been a ferocious but as yet almost entirely unsuccessful struggle. It has left both the entertainment industry and the governments that have tried to buttress them bloodied and until recently at a loss as to what to do. [...]

La Quadrature du Net, a France-based group fighting for digital civil liberties, has very much been leading the charge against internet cut-off and other restrictions on online rights. Co-founder Jeremie Zimmerman believes these attempts have got it all wrong.

"This all sounds like trying to empty the sea with a spoon," he said.

"Everyone accuses me of wanting everything for free - free as free beer. But this doesn't exist," he continued, himself the author of a book. "It is just that I don't believe that the only model should be paying for copies. Copying one line one million times is not like stealing copies from shops."

But he does have a solution. He argues for a "creative contribution"

[eWeekEurope] EU Telecoms Package Finally Approved

The EU telecoms package has finally been approved, following repeated delays due to the net cut-off row. Now governments need to focus on setting up a Europe-wide telecoms regulator in 2010. [...]

However the rules do not go as far as some consumer rights proponents would have liked. "The agreed text does not meet the challenge of clearly preserving a fundamental right of access to the net. Threats to internet freedom still loom, with the intense lobbying of the entertainment industries to push the ACTA treaty, which endangers net neutrality and seeks to impose the liability of the technical intermediaries," said Jérémie Zimmemrmann, co-founder of the citizen advocacy group La Quadrature du Net earlier this month. [...]

[] EU Telecom Package To Enter Into Force In December

The European Parliament today formally approved an update to European telecommunications rules aimed at enforcing consumer rights and supporting a single European market. But the change might also leave the door open for legislation restricting the internet in member countries and potentially questionable traffic management practice by internet service providers, according to a consumer group. [...]

According to La Quadrature du Net, the approved final text “could represent a step backwards in many member states with regards to the defence of the fundamental right of access to internet.” The advocacy group said the internet freedom provision included in the text “leaves the door open for restrictions of internet connections without a prior judicial decision.” [...]

According to the EU, the next steps are the entry into force of the whole telecoms reform package in December 2009, the establishment of the BEREC in the spring of 2010, and the transposition of the package into national legislation in the 27 EU member states by June 2011.

[heise online] USA machen Dampf bei Anti-Piraterie-Abkommen

Die Verhandlungsführer des geplanten Anti Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) sind sich laut einer Mitteilung aus dem Büro des US-Handelsbeauftragten einig, das umkämpfte Anti-Piraterie-Abkommen"2010 so früh wie möglich" zu verabschieden. Ihr nächstes Treffen haben die Delegierten für Januar 2010 in Mexiko angesetzt. In Folge sollen die Arbeiten an der Vereinbarung zügig abgeschlossen werden. [...]

Auch die europäischen Bürgerrechtler von La Quadrature du Net beäugen die Entwicklungen rund um ACTA weiterhin skeptisch. Sie verwiesen darauf, dass der voraussichtlich zumindest in dem Abkommen enthaltene Ruf nach "freiwilligen Kooperationsvereinbarungen" zwischen Internetprovidern und Rechteinhabern zur Bekämpfung von Copyright-Verletzungen bereits Eingang gefunden habe in die jüngste Mitteilung (PDF-Datei) der EU-Kommission zur "verbesserten Durchsetzung geistiger Eigentumsrechte im Binnenmarkt" vom September. [...] Die in Betracht gezogenen Abhilfen können so die Grundrechte der EU-Bürger unterlaufen und die ökonomische Entwicklung des Internet hemmen.

[] Jövőre már hatályba léphet az ACTA-egyezmény

Civil szervezetek szerint akár hónapokon belül elfogadhatják a sokat támadott Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) megállapodást.

Mind az amerikai Electronic Frotnier Foundation (EFF), mind pedig a francia La Quadrature du Net külön közleményben igyekezett felhívni az emberek figyelmét arra, hogy az ACTA nem valami utópisztikus rossz álom, hanem nagyon rövid időn belül valósággá válhat. [...]

Emellett gyakorlatilag biztosra vehető, hogy az internetszolgáltatókat együttműködésre és a teljes online adatforgalom megfigyelésére, illetve ellenőrzésére köteleznék A La Quadrature du Net szintén közleményt jelentetett meg, amelyben azt írta, hogy nagyon könnyen elképzelhető, hogy az Európai Bizottság megreformálja a kontinensen érvényes szerzői jogi szabályokat és azokat az amerikai fél kedve szerint változtatja majd meg. [...]

[Stuttgarter Zeitung] Durch die Hintertür

Berlin/Brüssel - Während in Deutschland das Gesetz für Internetsperren gegen kinderpornografische Inhalte erst von der neuen Regierung für ein Jahr auf Eis gelegt wurde, verhandeln die USA, die EU und viele andere Industriestaaten ein multinationales Abkommen, das Urheberrechtsverletzungen mit Internetsperren und Gefängnisstrafen ahnden will.

Kritiker halten ACTA für ein "Schutzabkommen für die US-Entertainmentbranche". Jérémie Zimmermann, Mitgründer der europäischen Bürgerrechtsorganisation "La Quadrature du Net" glaubt, dass der europäische Kompromiss "rechtliche Munition" gegen weitere Einschränkungen biete, doch verhindern wird er die Umsetzung des Abkommens nicht. ACTA würde damit die internationalen Vereinbarungen der World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) mit einem multilateralen Abkommen ergänzen. Seit zwei Jahren wird dieses Abkommen im Geheimen verhandelt. Am Mittwoch trafen sich die Unterhändler erneut im südkoreanischen Seoul, um über den Entwurf zu beraten. Die Angelegenheit ist geheim - sie unterliegt der "nationalen Sicherheit".

[Isdi] La Neutralità della Rete sempre più a rischio

Trattative semisegrete in corso in Corea avrebbero delineato un Accordo contro la contraffazione che, di fatto, sanzionerebbero massicciamente il download di materiali coperti da copyright – Ma i venti della censura soffiano forti in Europa dove va avanti la marcia di Consiglio e Parlamento europeo contro il p2p – Verrebbe escluso l’ intervento dell’autorità giudiziaria a favore di competenze delle autorità amministrative, privando così il cittadino della possibilità di “difendersi nel quadro di un ordinario processo, di fronte ad un magistrato imparziale e non ad un’autorità che potrebbe essere portatrice di interessi di parte”, come sottolinea PuntoInformatico. [...]

Eppure inizialmente l’Europa sembrava convinta del fatto che l’accesso ad Internet fosse un diritto fondamentale e, in quanto tale, andasse difeso senza restrizioni a diritti e libertà fondamentali, applicabili solo “in circostanze eccezionali”. Eppure il vento è cambiato, le posizioni si sono fatte meno nette e l’idea di un’Unione Europea garante delle libertà fondamentali è andata sfocandosi gradualmente. Lo confermano anche da La Quadrature du Net, tra i primi siti a difendere l’emendamento 138, secondo cui “con tale ripiego, il Parlamento europeo si è fatto carico dell’idea erronea che, in virtù dei trattati, non detiene alcun diritto a proteggere i diritti dei cittadini”. [...]

[ComputerWeekly] EU weakens net neutrality to pass telecoms reform package

A net neutrality revision has allowed European legislators to implement long-awaited reforms that will introduce a single competitive market in telecoms throughout the continent.

New, watered-down text adopted in a conciliation process speaks of the right to a "prior fair and impartial procedure" rather than a court action, as well as the presumption of innocence in cases of alleged illegal file-sharing.

Sources close to the law-making process say the new text appears to allow the UK and French governments to persist with their "three strikes and you are out" policies to go after illegal file-sharers.

La Quadrature du Net, a net neutrality lobby organisation, said the new text aimed at protecting internet access includes positive elements. "It also contains ambiguous language and potential loopholes. This rather unambitious provision will now be up for interpretation," it said in a statement.

[PuntoInformatico] Emendamento 138, reimpacchettato

Roma - Rispetto dei diritti fondamentali della persona, tutela della privacy, garanzia ad essere giudicati in maniera ponderata e imparziale, sanzioni proporzionate per punire coloro che vengano colti a violare il diritto d'autore con la mediazione della Rete. Consiglio e Parlamento Europeo sembrano aver trovato un accordo: il frammento del Pacchetto Telecom su cui si è arenata la procedura di negoziazione negli scorsi mesi parrebbe aver assunto ora una forma definitiva. [...]

I consumatori di BEUC ritengono che, nonostante la formulazione poco incisiva del testo, "tutte le parti abbiano riconosciuto che sia necessario garantire i diritti fondamentali degli utenti nel mondo digitale". Concordano da La Quadrature du Net, che da tempo si adopera a favore dei diritti nella società civile connessa: "questo testo - ha chiosato il cofondatore del gruppo Jérémie Zimmermann - fornisce le armi legali per continuare a combattere le restrizioni dell'accesso a Internet". [...]

[heise online] Halbgarer Kompromiss zu Internetsperren auf EU-Ebene

Vertreter des EU-Rates und des EU-Parlaments haben sich in ihrem mehrmonatigen Streit über eine Regelung zur "abgestuften Erwiderung" auf Copyright-Verletzungen im Internet beim ersten offiziellen Treffen des gemeinsamen Vermittlungsausschusses am gestrigen Mittwochabend in Brüssel auf einen gemeinsamen Ansatz geeinigt. Der Kompromiss im Rahmen der Novellierung des Telecom-Pakets sieht vor, dass Maßnahmen der Mitgliedsstaaten rund um den Zugang zu oder die Nutzung von Diensten und Applikationen in elektronischen Netzwerken die in der Europäischen Menschenrechtskonvention und im Gemeinschaftsrecht dargelegten Grundrechte beachten sollen. [...]

Jérémie Zimmemrmann, Mitgründer der Bürgerrechtsorganisation La Quadrature du Net, sieht ebenfalls vor allem aus dieser Richtung weitere Gefahren für die Internetfreiheit und die Netzneutralität kommen. Der ausgehandelte Text zum Telecom-Paket enthalte kein eindeutiges Grundrecht auf Zugang zum Netz. Zumindest könne er aber andererseits doch als "rechtliche Munition" für den weiteren Kampf gegen Einschränkungen der Internetnutzung verwendet werden.

[EuroActiv] Telecoms package to end uncontested

The EU is reportedly on the cusp of undermining Internet users' fundamental freedoms for good as the European Council is putting pressure on MEPs to agree to a watered-down version of the telecoms package tomorrow (4 November), making it possible to cut off the Web connections of suspected illegal downloaders without a fair trial.

According to sources, a conciliation committee, the third and final phase of EU law-making, will run late into tomorrow night (4 November), sparking fears among MEPs that they will be forced to agree to the Council's version of the package, eliminating Internet users' right to a fair trial. [...]

The new wording shows that the Parliament is now willing to agree with the Council, argues Jérémie Zimmermann, from La Quadrature du Net, an Internet advocacy NGO.

The new text, which reads "any measures may only be adopted as a result of a prior, fair and impartial procedure," was tabled by re-elected S&D MEP Catherine Trautmann, who before the June elections had fought hard to keep references to a judicial authority.

'New text not Hadopi-proof' [...]

[euobserver] European parliament abandons internet cut-off struggle

On 6 October, telecoms ministers formally rejected the parliament's key amendment - the now infamous Amendment 138.

France-France-based internet freedom pressure group La Quadrature du Net calls the compromise text "useless legalese" that essentially only restates existing rights protections and does nothing to explicitly rule out internet blocking.

"Amendment 138 will instead be replaced by a weak provision that does not carry any new important safeguard for citizen's freedoms," said spokesman for the group, Jeremie Zimmerman.

"This decision was taken consciously by rapporteur Catherine Trautmann, in order not to risk a confrontation with the Council [representing the member states] and to quickly finish with the telecoms package."

Mr Zimmerman said pressure from France and other member states has been fierce.

"Ministers of member states, who want to be able to regulate the net without interference from the judiciary, were rushing to kill amendment 138 and put an end to the negotiations."

[IHT] France Approves Wide Crackdown on Net Piracy

France thrust itself into the vanguard of the global battle against digital piracy on Thursday, approving a plan to deny Internet access to people who illegally copy music and movies. [...]

“It is a very sad day for Internet freedom in France,” said Jérémie Zimmermann, spokesman for La Quadrature du Net, a group that had campaigned against the law. He said opponents of the law would seek new ways to subvert it.

[] European Parliament censors Amendment 138 verdict

The European Parliament is censoring a document that citizens need to see because it represents the crushing of their rights to access Internet services and applications. Most importantly, the text, from the European Parliament's legal services, does NOT answer the policy question about copyright enforcement and Hadopi-style administrative justice.

The rapporteur, Catherine Trautmann, is called into question. Is she doing the Council's bidding? Is she deliberately ignoring requests from colleagues on the Conciliation committee?

The text the European Parliament does not want you to see is a document containing the European Parliament's legal opinion on Amendment 138. It is now being circulated in the European Parliament, marked 'confidential'. However, the key parts of the document have appeared on the La Quadrature du Net website (see link below). What it actually says is that technically, Amendment 138 goes beyond the EU's competence to legislate, but the alternative text proposed by the European Commission, stays within the EU competence.

[] Planet Blog: Legislating the web

Activists are hard at work, campaigning to amend some bills defining the telecommunications industry in the European Union.

My guest this week, spokesman for La Quadrature du Net, Jeremie Zimmermann, said the Telecoms Package, a series of bills before the EU parliament, could result in the infringement of personal liberties. We discussed the legislation and its impact on net neutrality for the EU.

Listen to the Interview with Jeremie Zimmerman :,,4785103_type_a...,,4785048,00.html

[Boingboing] Europeans! Call your MEP today to block net surveillance proposal!

Jérémie Zimmermann sez, "The Conciliation committee delegation of the European Parliament on the 'Telecoms Package' will meet on October 13th, 11AM. In this informal meeting, they will be presented an outrageous analysis by the legal team of the Parliament aimed at making them accept an extremely dangerous 'compromise' text replacing amendment 138, essential safeguard for citizen's freedoms adopted twice by 88% of the votes. EU citizens must help to convince members of the delegation to start the negotiations with the original amendment 138, adapt its wording if necessary, but reject this 'compromise'. We must refuse an Orwellian vision for freedoms in EU, where the right to a due process could be restricted for 'prevention or detection of criminal offenses'!"

La Quadrature du Net has instructions for contacting your MEP by phone and a sample script to follow with her or him.

Call your MEP.

URGENT action save am138 against horrible compromise

[] Will EU lawyers white-out Amendment 138?

EU lawyers say that Amendment 138 has to go because of a legal technical problem. And they insist on a poor replacement that will do nothing to stop the imposition of copyright enforcement measures. Given that we know the political agenda for both copyright and Internet restrictions, shouldn't they do better?

The European Parliament's legal services will deliver their opinion on Monday in respect of Amendment 138, the Telecoms Package amendment that seeks to protect Internet users rights in respect of copyright enforcement and Internet restrictions.

The Parliament's lawyers are expected to say that Amendment 138 does not comply with the legal basis for telecoms legislation, which falls under Article 95 of the EU Treaty.

[] EU to decide extent of internet freedom Tuesday

The European Union (EU) is set to decide tomorrow whether it will consider protecting net neutrality.

The debate revolves around whether telecoms firms should be allowed intentionally to speed up or slow down traffic based on the service or application being used. [...]

LQDN has urged Europeans to call on their MEPs to preserve net neutrality. So far more than 70 non-governmental organisations from 15 member states have signed up to the agenda.

"Citizens from all member states have a few hours left to call all the members of the European Parliament delegation in the conciliation committee," said LQDN this morning.

[] EU:s telekompaket: Dags för sista akten i dramat

Ikväll går ridån upp för sista akten i dramat kring EU:s telekompaket. Då får vi veta om någon svensk får sitta med i de direkta förhandlingarna med ministerrådet. Frågan är också vad de ska förhandla om. Internetaktivister runtom i unionen försöker in i det sista påverka agendan.

Nu görs ett tredje och sista försök, en så kallad förlikning, för att få igenom de lagförslag som sammanfattningsvis kallas telekompaketet. Parlamentet och ministerrådet kom i våras överens om allt utom en paragraf, kallad ändringsförslag 138. [...]

Olika aktivistgrupper, med franska La Quadrature du Net i täten, agiterar intensivt för att få upp nätneutraliteten på bordet igen.

[] Should MEPs open up the Package?

Without Amendment 138, the Telecoms Package permits restrictions on Internet access and it allows graduated response/3-strikes measures. How should the European Parliament handle its negotiations with the Council?

The European Parliament meets tomorrow to vote for the team who will negotiate with the Council, and give it a mandate. A key question is what should be the scope of the discussions. Should they open it up beyond Amendment 138? [...]

[derFreitag] Die EU soll sich mehr für Netzneutralität einsetzen

In einem Brief hat die französische Bürgerrechtsorganisation "La Quadrature du Net" gefordert, die Netzneutralität in der Europäischen Union zu schützen. Es stehen die abschließenden Verhandlungen über diese wichtige Reform im Rahmen des Telcoms Package an.

[...] La Quadrature veröffentlicht den aktuellen Verhandlungsstand und bittet alle europäischen Bürger ihre Vertreter im entsprechenden Ausschuss, sowie die 27 Abgeordneten, die im Rahmen des Vermittlungsverfahrens arbeiten, aufzufordern, sich für die Netzneutralität einzusetzen.

[] Net Neutrality letter to the ministers in charge

La Quadrature du Net sent a letter to the French ministers in charge of the Telecoms Package to ask them to protect Net neutrality in the European Union, as they enter into final negotiations regarding this major reform. Here is an english translation you can adapt to the context of your Member State

[Intellectual Property Watch] US Acts To Preserve Internet Neutrality; European Debate Heats Up

As the United States is moving to ensure that internet (net) neutrality is preserved in that country, some are hoping other regions of the world will take notice, particularly the European Union. [...]

La Quadrature du Net, which is advocating for net neutrality to be protected, will insist on a public debate and push European lawmakers to revise any anti-neutrality provisions and “guarantee that this principle will be respected in the EU,” said spokesman Jérémie Zimmerman. LQDN is encouraging EU citizens and groups to sign an open letter to EU officials encouraging a free and open internet.

[Computeract!ve] French to criminalise illegal file sharing

The French National Assembly has voted to adopt a so-called 'three strikes' law that will effectively criminalise illegal file sharing. [...]

Jérémie Zimmermann, co-founder of civil liberties group, La Quadrature du Net said: "Hadopi 2 is still as dangerous as the first one, infringing on freedom of expression and communication.” [...]

Mr Zimmermann said: “Let's hope that the Constitutional Council will once again protect French citizens' fundamental rights."

[The Inquirer] Net Neutrality to be curbed in the EU

AS US REGULATORS consider new legislation to protect net neutrality, European citizens are set to have their internet freedoms significantly curbed.

The debate on net neutrality revolves around whether telcoms firms should be allowed to intentionally speed up or slow down traffic based on which service or application is being used. [...]

The conciliation procedure will begin on 29 September and the committee from the European Parliament that will debate the issue has been picked, said the source.

This means that pretty much the only remaining option for citizens concerned about restrictions on their internet freedoms is to join in a campaign spearheaded by a French citizen rights group, La Quadrature du Net (LQDN), which calls for net neutrality to be protected. So far more than 50 NGOs from 12 member states have signed up to the agenda. [...]

[heise online] Frankreich: Harte Strafen für Urheberrechtsverletzung per Filesharing

Die französische Nationalversammlung hat die lange umkämpften Strafvorschriften des "Gesetzes zur Verbreitung und zum Schutz kreativer Inhalte im Internet" am gestrigen Dienstag endgültig abgesegnet. Das Gesamtvorhaben will in Frankreich das auch hierzulande viel diskutierte Verfahren zur "abgestuften Erwiderung" auf Urheberrechtsverstöße im Netz aufsetzen. [...]

Die Opposition und Bürgerrechtsorganisationen wie La Quadrature du Net monieren daher, dass den Betroffenen ein anständiges Verfahren verweigert werden solle. Zudem würden als Basis für die Verurteilung illegaler Filesharing-Aktivitäten allein IP-Adressen der Nutzer herangezogen, die nicht als gültige Beweismittel zu werten seien. "Hadopi 2 ist genauso gefährlich wie der erste Streich", betont ein Sprecher von La Quadrature du Net. [...]

[internetdagarna] Många börjar förstå att det är något fel på Hadopi-lagen

Jag skämtade för ett tag sedan med några av medlemmarna i den franska medborgarrättsrörelsen La Quadrature du Net. Jag sade att vi borde ta med oss en filmkamera och gå till myndigheterna för att be om en skiva med det statliga spionprogram som man säkerligen kommer att behöva installera i sin dator så att de styrande skall kunna hålla koll på en när Hadopi-lagen träder i kraft. [...]

”Från början förstod de flesta inte alls vad lagförslaget handlade om”, säger Julien Rabier till mig i irc-kanalen #telekompaketet på chattservern ”Men efter de senaste veckornas information, och efter att lagen avkrypterats och förklarats närmare, har medvetenheten ökat om att det handlar om ett felaktigt svar på ett falskt problem.” [...]

[] European net neutrality set to be restricted

As US regulators consider new legislation to protect net neutrality, European citizens are set to have their internet freedoms significantly curbed. [...]

[...] the Swedish Presidency does not want to waste time debating the issue again.

This means that pretty much the only remaining option for citizens concerned about restrictions on their internet freedoms is to join in a campaign spearheaded by a French citizen rights group, La Quadrature du Net (LQDN), which calls for net neutrality to be protected. So far more than 50 NGOs from 12 member states have signed up to the agenda. [...]

“It is very important for the democratic process to shine light on this disturbingly opaque conciliation negotiation,” said LQDN spokesman Jérémie Zimmermann. [...]

[The Faster Times] Illegal Downloading Just Got Illegal-er

It already failed to pass once. Then, it was then struck down by the French Constitutional Council. The final vote fell along strictly partisan lines, and even so, 40 or so of his own deputies voted against it. Yet in spite of it all, last week, French President Nicolas Sarkozy finally succeeded in passing an amended version of the much maligned and, many say, fundamentally flawed anti-illegal downloading bill, known as the loi Hadopi. Whether this is a tribute to the tenacity or to the obstinacy of the French leadership is unclear. [...]

“There must be ten different ways of explaining how obsolete, inefficient and dangerous it will be,” Jeremie Zimmermann, co-founder of the internet advocacy group La Quadrature du Net, told The Faster Times. “The most disturbing part is that there is a good chance people punished by this law will be innocent.” Indeed, listening to Mr. Zimmermann, you start to wonder if the drafters of the law even understand how the Internet actually works. [...]

[BoingBoing] Europeans! Call your MEP to protect Net Neutrality

Jeremie Zimmermann sez, "Organizations from all around Europe share their concern of seeing Net Neutrality being sacrificed during the conciliation procedure of the directives of the EU Telecoms Package. They sent this letter to the Members of the European Parliament, urging them to take decisive action in order to guarantee a free, open and innovative Internet, and to safeguard the fundamental freedoms of European citizens."

"Everyone can take action by calling the Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) who were supportive of citizens' fundamental rights and freedoms in the past and ask them to do all they can to participate in the conciliation committee of the Telecoms Package."

[] Parts of telecoms package innovation-hostile, says activist

The EU's telecoms package is set to relinquish control of the Internet to network operators, say Web activists, who are busy lobbying ministers and MEPs ahead of an imminent third reading of the legislation.

There are several elements in the package which are hostile to innovation and will turn the Internet into a kind of global cable television controlled by network operators, Jeremie Zimmerman, co-founder of civil liberties group La Quadrature du Net told EurActiv in an interview.