[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.