Summary: Karel de Gucht (shown above) and the USPTO carry on with their race for ACTA, which is an enemy of software freedom as well as many other freedoms
LAST WEEK we mentioned Karel de Gucht, the European Commissioner for Trade, who argues falsely that ACTA won’t harm free software. This man turned into another foe of Europe’s interests by choosing to push the US initiative known as ACTA (which is unconstitutional). Its purpose is to help mega-corporations gain even more power over society all across the world. Karel’s slip of the tongue has just caused TechDirt to state that:
As US Insists ACTA Is Not A Treaty, EU Trade Commissioner Admits It’s A Treaty
We’ve already posted about David Kappos’ non-response to legality questions about ACTA, but at the bottom of KEI’s coverage of this story there’s another interesting point. ACTA supporters in the US have been bending over backwards to insist that ACTA is not a treaty. Any time anyone mentions it as a treaty in the comments here, one of the ACTA supporters among our readership will quickly admonish them for being clueless about the law and will insist that this is nothing more than an “executive agreement,” which does not need Senate approval. It’s one of ACTA supporters’ favorite talking points. Of course, there are some serious constitutional questions about that.
However, much more telling is that many ACTA supporters will outright admit it’s a treaty. We already noted that the Business Software Alliance (BSA) did just that a few weeks ago (and also falsely claimed it had already been signed by 37 countries).
Hello, Kappos? Et tu, BSA?
Non-responsive letter from David Kappos of USPTO to Senators Sanders and Brown regarding ACTA consistency with US law
In a October 19, 2010, Senators Bernard Sanders (I-VT) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH) wrote to David Kappos, the Director of the USPTO, asking for an assessment of conflicts between the October 2010 ACTA text, and U.S. law. (attached here).
KEI also has this new paper
[PDF] titled “Innovation Inducement Prizes to Reduce Costs, Enhance Productivity, and Expand Access”. It’s from two days ago and the target is Europe. KEI — like us — wishes to help Americans. But what’s good for American conglomerates, for example, is not necessarily good for citizens of the United States. Let’s expose the hawks (not eagles) of society and expose their malicious, self-serving agenda which USPTO helps perpetuate. The USPTO — like lobbyists — is there to serve counterproductive lawyers and massive corporations, so the “US” in “USPTO” can be as deceiving as the “NZ” in “NZICT” (it lobbies for the interests which are opposite to New Zealand's). █