[Also see the EFF's page about this if you're having a hard time coming up with a letter.]
This is my comment about the '2010 Special 301 Review' for the United States Trade Representatives. I would like to complain about the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, also known as ACTA. As a firm believer in transparency of government and democracy, I would like to strongly object to the outright secrecy displayed around these negotiations. In a modern age, this simply isn't an appropriate forum for creation of new law.
Furthermore, what I have seen in leaked versions of the ACTA is deeply upsetting, on many levels:
- The "Border Measures" provisions are unconstitutional, as well as extremely alarming -- search and seizure without probable cause, on no grounds more severe than suspicion.
- The ISP regulation is also extremely alarming, unduly allowing enforcement agents to remove the privacy and anonymity of citizens without a warrant.
- "Graduated response" programs, such as those required by the ACTA, threaten to deprive citizens of Internet access without probable cause. As Internet access becomes more and more central to civic and daily life, this becomes increasingly threatening.
- In general, the criminalization of copyright infringement, which has always been a civil crime, is a huge provision for what is presumably a "trade agreement" and is frankly arbitrary and despotic.
The creation of ACTA is wholly inappropriate given the existence of another intellectual property organization, WIPO. As a citizen of the United States, I demand that my government cease participation in this mockery of democracy at once.
Thank you for your time.