ACTA Treaty ‘Anti-Consumer and Anti-Innovation’ Groups Tell Congress
ACTA Treaty ‘Anti-Consumer and Anti-Innovation’ Groups Tell Congress
ACTA Treaty ‘Anti-Consumer and Anti-Innovation’ Groups Tell Congress

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    A treaty being negotiated by the U.S. government dealing with
    intellectual property issues appears to have included parts of prior
    agreements “most favorable to groups of intellectual property
    holders” while leaving out those elements “most favorable to
    consumers,” Knowledge Ecology International (KEI) and Public
    Knowledge told Congressional leaders.

    In a letter sent to Congress earlier today the two organizations, among
    the most active in the debate over the proposed Anti-Counterfeiting Trade
    Agreement (ACTA), said that while they have in the past expressed
    concerns about the lack of transparency in the negotiations, this letter
    deals with the substance of the agreement as gleaned from press reports
    and “credible leaked documents.” A copy of the letter is

    The groups said that it appears that the proposed agreement
    “implicates changes to international intellectual property norms
    far broader than its name suggests,” incorporating elements of the
    World Trade Organization’s Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual
    Property (TRIPS) agreements.

    According to the letter: “Rather than taking as their starting
    point the entire TRIPS agreement, it would seem that the ACTA negotiators
    have identified certain parts of the TRIPS agreement most favorable to
    particular groups of intellectual property holders, including certain
    publishers, media conglomerates, and pharmaceutical companies. Left out
    of the ACTA text are the elements most favorable to consumers, including
    those intended to curb anticompetitive practices, and to protect
    innovation. The result is an agreement that is therefore unbalanced. ACTA
    would appear to be an expanded version of the TRIPS enforcement sections,
    but without the balance and safeguards that have given TRIPS such

    Members of the media may contact Communications Director Shiva Stella with inquiries, interview requests, or to join the Public Knowledge press list at or 405-249-9435.