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The U.S.'s secret ACTA pact would allow border patrol agents in the EU and North America to arrest and fine citizens suspected of copyright infringement. It would also give them means to annul constitutional protections against search and siezure, allowing them to destroy citzens' personal property suspected to contain infringed works. It also would seek to implement proactive monitoring of citizens online.  (Source: Digital Journal)

An EU privacy officials argues that it's illegal for ACTA to toss out legal protections and allow the warrantless destruction of citizens' property.  (Source: iPod Overhaul)
ACTA is no friend of the public -- or the law -- according to a prominent EU official

Details of the secret Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) leaked in 2008.  The multi-national agreement brokered by the U.S. government at the behest of the music and film industries looks to adopt sweeping new anti-piracy measures that include warrantless searches of citizens and destruction of devices containing potentially pirated works.

Even as groups like the ACLU, WikiLeaks, and the Electronic Frontier Foundation have fought the pact, the government has moved ahead to implement it.  However, the agreement has gained perhaps its most prominent critic yet, Peter Hustinx, the European Data Protection Supervisor.

Mr. Hustinx serves as a privacy chief for the EU and he found the provisions of ACTA alarming.  He authored an opinion paper [PDF] on several topics, including ACTA.  In the piece he writes that there's concern that ACTA may be violating the legal rights of citizens in multiple nations.  

He argues, "The EDPS strongly encourages the European Commission to establish a public and transparent dialogue on ACTA, possibly by means of a public consultation, which would also help ensuring that the measures to be adopted are compliant with EU privacy and data protection law requirements."

He also questions the pact's plans to share data about citizens between nations.  He writes:

It can be questioned first whether data transfers to third countries in the context of ACTA are legitimate. The relevance of adopting measures at international level in that field can be questioned as long as there is no agreement within the EU member states over the harmonisation of enforcement measures in the digital environment and the types of criminal sanctions to be applied. In view of the above, it appears that the principles of necessity and proportionality of the data transfers under ACTA would be more easily met if the agreement was expressly limited to fighting the most serious IPR infringement offences, instead of allowing for bulk data transfers relating to any suspicions of IPR infringements. This will require defining precisely the scope of what constitutes the 'most serious IPR infringement offences' for which data transfers may occur.

ACTA would allow the U.S. and other nations to search citizens at border crossings for suspected infringed materials.  Border agents would have authorization to destroy citizens' personal property, such as iPods, if they suspect it to contain infringed works.  The agreement also calls for the proactive monitoring of citizens online by law enforcement.

He also takes issue with "three strikes" proposals, such as the pending legislation in EU member nations Britain and France, which could sever the internet connections of filesharers.

He comments, "Such practices are highly invasive in the individuals' private sphere. They entail the generalized monitoring of Internet users’ activities, including perfectly lawful ones. They affect millions of law-abiding Internet users, including many children and adolescents. They are carried out by private parties, not by law enforcement authorities. Moreover, nowadays, Internet plays a central role in almost all aspects of modern life, thus, the effects of disconnecting Internet access may be enormous, cutting individuals off from work, culture, eGoverment applications, etc."

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Just bring your recipts
By Nutzo on 2/23/2010 11:06:51 AM , Rating: 5
If I rip a couple DVDs I bought to my laptop (technically a copyright violation), so that I can watch them on the plane, they can take away my laptop and destroy it?

Looks like it's time to start encrypting the drive, or at least rename the files to something like "Family Vacation 2003"

Guess we will also have to start carry recipts when we travel to prove we bought all the music on our ipods.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By jimbojimbo on 2/23/2010 11:17:47 AM , Rating: 5
They'll suspect your receipts are counterfeited and then destroy those. Then they'll see you have no proof of purchase of your songs so they'll destroy those.

In other new, all border guards will have neodynium magnets installed into the palms of all their gloves and just wipe every magnetic device.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By Motoman on 2/23/2010 11:41:12 AM , Rating: 5
...and if you brought along the actual retail disks in their original cases, they could just declare that they're counterfeit and destroy them too.

Rise up or roll over. Your choice.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By headbox on 2/23/2010 3:36:31 PM , Rating: 5
The American people have already rolled over, and will take it again and again.

Recent CNN poll states 86% of people think government is broken. There's a 100% chance the next election will put a democrat or republican in office. That's the definition of stupidity.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By itzmec on 2/23/2010 3:43:56 PM , Rating: 2
100 percent takes the chance out of it

RE: Just bring your recipts
By Motoman on 2/23/2010 4:13:31 PM , Rating: 5 does the 2 party system.

Political parties should be outlawed. Make everyone stand on their own merits, and toss all of this majority/minority crap in the house and senate.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By JediJeb on 2/23/2010 5:32:26 PM , Rating: 4
That's what George Washington believed, and just as soon as he was out of office, political parties began to form.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By rcc on 2/23/2010 7:07:19 PM , Rating: 2
Your political history is lacking. There were already political parties in Washington's time. Depending on where you look, he was listed as either being a member, or just supporting, the Federalist party.

Perhaps some more recent students can add to the list. I recall Whigs and Torries as well.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By foolsgambit11 on 2/23/2010 9:20:51 PM , Rating: 3
First off, how would you go about banning political parties? Stopping people from banding together to support a candidate of their choosing would be a clear infringement of government power - the right to peaceably assemble is enshrined in the American Constitution, for example. You could stop marking party affiliations on ballots, I suppose, but that doesn't really ban parties, it just removes governmental recognition of them, and would be a pretty meaningless gesture. I'd love to see an end to the primary system. Why should we as taxpayers pay to help the political parties decide who to put on the ballot? That could be an achievable goal towards reducing the power of the American party system.

The outcry against political parties in the early days of America was a result of the anachronisms of the British party system of the 18th Century. Even so, it was by no means a universal sentiment - if it were, it probably would have made it into the Constitution. Instead, the framers just omitted any mention one way or the other. That suggests to me a compromise made among the framers, though I don't really know whether that's what really happened.

Some claim that our two-party system is a result of the construction of our national government. I don't know if that's true, but either way, these days the two national parties are really just umbrella groups for several 'virtual parties', anyway. In that sense, it's not too much different from a multi-party parliamentary system where parties join together coalition governments - frequently with the same closely-aligned parties election after election. Except they form the coalition officially after the election.

Finally, in my wall of text, I'll just throw out that even though the labels are the same, the parties are constantly changing, and the President represents different 'virtual parties'. I doubt anyone would argue that, for instance, George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush represented the same wings of the Republican party (though there is an overarching 'conservative' theme). Bush 41's base was not the conservative Christian virtual party. He was more of a William F. Buckley conservative.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By mcnabney on 2/24/2010 1:35:10 AM , Rating: 2
Your well thought out wall of text has no business hear. Next time try to condense all of your ideas to two or three sentences of wharrgarbl to better fit into these political discussions.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By fcx56 on 3/1/2010 5:32:14 PM , Rating: 2
You can only hear it if you read it aloud

RE: Just bring your recipts
By Motoman on 2/23/2010 4:14:46 PM , Rating: 5
I love saying this, because it's true...

"Democracy is a mechanism by which the people are guaranteed a government no better than they deserve."

...and we is some dumb people. Hyuk.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By Samus on 2/23/2010 9:54:06 PM , Rating: 2
We need a God damn war already. One with purpose. Who knows, maybe the government will collapse and we'll have a dictatorship. Couldn't be worse than the last two decades of power.

Sometimes I wonder if a Skynet-scenerio would actually benifit humanity. Sure there would be a catastrophic initial fallout, but wouldn't this result in people respecting life and in turn increase the quality of life.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By MrPoletski on 2/24/2010 6:14:59 AM , Rating: 2
You wonder if a determined and largly successful attempt at the extermination of all humanity would be good for humanity?

Yeah, I sometimes wonder that too.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By Omega215D on 2/23/2010 11:55:21 PM , Rating: 5
That's why our education system is broken. The biggest threat to the government is an educated populous.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By Motoman on 2/24/2010 1:20:02 AM , Rating: 3
Yes, but our population is stupid and credulous.

...a government should always be afraid of the people. Not the other way around.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By FITCamaro on 2/24/2010 7:15:08 AM , Rating: 3
That was his point. Democrats don't want to make the schools better. A population educated in history and economics doesn't believe the claims they make. So they keep fighting to dumb down the schools using "fairness" as their motto.

I saw an article recently where it talked about how in Berkeley county schools in commifornia they going to remove science lab courses. Why? Apparently science is racist because white students do far better than black or Hispanic students. So out goes the science labs and in their place goes more liberal bullsh*t courses. Its disgusting.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By Motoman on 2/24/2010 9:29:43 AM , Rating: 3
...last I checked it wasn't democrats trying to ban science from our schools and teach religion instead.

Both parties are fundamentally corrupt, and the weakness in our education system has bubbled up to the top where we now have essentially uneducated people who can't tell the difference between science and non-science trying to dictate what should be in school curricula.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By oxymojoe on 2/26/2010 9:29:02 PM , Rating: 2
Your particular line of thought sounds as if it were ancient Egypt and its illegal to read or write. Its no ones fault if you're just are.

The cream rises to the top. If you want it, are capable, and have a modicum of discipline, you will achieve most of your endeavors.

If the education system was broken, poor minorities and immigrants who speak other languages would not become tremendously successful, which plenty have done here.

It's the entitlement attitude of lazy Americans that's broken. Look at how far down we have gone compared to pre 1960's. All this LBJ great society type liberal BS is what's happened.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By Omega215D on 2/23/2010 11:54:13 PM , Rating: 5
You're right! We must stand up to the government.. Oh American Idol/ TMZ/ Jersey Shore is on!

RE: Just bring your recipts
By Ammohunt on 2/23/2010 2:01:50 PM , Rating: 2
And if you connected your device to your car stereo they will destroy it as well. DOGS LIVING WITH CATS! IT WILL BE ANARCHY!

RE: Just bring your recipts
By zxern on 2/23/2010 7:30:41 PM , Rating: 5
You really think they'll get destroyed? More than likely they'll be tossed into a box and later sold on ebay.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By Modeverything on 2/23/2010 11:37:02 AM , Rating: 2
One problem is you may not be fined for piracy if they don't find anything, but your property may still get destroyed. I don't expect they are going to reimburse you for damaged equipment either, even if they don't find anything.

This is a no win situation for civilians.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By cfaalm on 2/23/2010 2:31:18 PM , Rating: 2
So it is illegal.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By JediJeb on 2/23/2010 5:35:01 PM , Rating: 2
I guess that will depend on how the Supreme Court sides on the first case brought to them over it.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By chagrinnin on 2/23/2010 7:02:20 PM , Rating: 3
I guess that will depend on how the Supreme Court sides on the first case bought to them over it.

The grammar's worse but it's closer to the truth.

*Alito: Not true!
**Joe Wilson: You lie!
***Kyle: They killed Kenny's iPod!
****Stan: You bastards!

RE: Just bring your recipts
By Lerianis on 2/23/2010 3:52:39 PM , Rating: 4
No, it isn't.... they try to destroy MY property, they are going to get a lawsuit against them, and AFTER I get this blatantly illegal law thrown out, I am going to go after the people who took my property PERSONALLY and RUIN them.
We will see how many 100K or more verdicts against customs officials it takes before the customs officials say "HELL NO! I ain't going to try to enforce a law like this or any other law even REMOTELY like it!"

RE: Just bring your recipts
By Nutzo on 2/23/2010 5:20:40 PM , Rating: 2
I'm sure the law disallows any lawsuits against the boarder patol agents.

I think I might have to start looking for a new job as a boarder patol agent. With the bonus ebay sales, I'm sure I could make a pretty good living :)

RE: Just bring your recipts
By rcc on 2/23/2010 7:09:52 PM , Rating: 2
Last time I checked Border Patrol agents were in the $60-70k range, with a $10k pay raise coming up.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By chagrinnin on 2/23/2010 7:53:03 PM , Rating: 2
lol,..yeah, but he was talking about boarder patol. He said it twice. Reading compensation dude,...look it up. :P

RE: Just bring your recipts
By rcc on 3/8/2010 4:18:21 PM , Rating: 2
seeeeeee. I said in another post that we don't generally complain about spelling unless it changes the meaning. So, while I could have corrected that, someone would have bi.... er, complained about that too.

ie. Boarder Patrol, sanctioned by bed and breakfasts world wide to remove guests that use too much shampoo.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By albundy2 on 2/24/2010 6:09:46 AM , Rating: 3
they're not scared of a lawsuit... seriously this is part of the problem.. some will say my solution is no better if not worse... you really want to get somewhere with all this bs... replace "lawsuit" with "bust a cap in his punk ass".. instead of "I'm going to slap you with a lawsuit!" shorten it to " I'm going to slap you!".

It's like a parent that yells and screams, then wonders why the kid ignores them. the kid knows eventually you'll shut up. My dad would yell once, i would answer or he would slap the shit out of me when he came to find out why i didn't answer. unless i had a good reason.

wake up boy's and girl's... your the lazy parent and the government is the kid that is ignoring you... become the step dad that woops that boy's ass and gets him back in line or spend eternity on montel williams show whining to the world how outta controll your kid is.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By Uncle on 2/23/2010 1:00:32 PM , Rating: 3
Wake up and smell the coffee. Your going to lose all your rights if your attitude doesn't change. It looks like "I'll have to encrypt", ooohh such an intelligent answer is that the best you can come up with. The Non elected agencys are taking your rights away, smack yourself, wakeup, get off the crack pipe. Your not going to have any rights left before you know it, Is it any wonder America is going down the tubes if your what is coming out of the education system.

RE: Just bring your recipts
By aharris on 2/23/2010 1:58:04 PM , Rating: 5
*Ahem* Speaking of the education system: You + Are = You're. You had at least 2/5 right!

RE: Just bring your recipts
By Pjotr on 2/23/2010 7:08:10 PM , Rating: 2
Using what encryption? The one delivered with your Windows version? Don't you think those have "super keys" that they can use?

RE: Just bring your recipts
By kjkrum on 2/24/2010 8:08:23 AM , Rating: 3
Making copies for your own personal use is NOT a copyright violation! At least, that's how the courts have traditionally viewed it. That may change if **AA lobbyists have their way.

By forgotmypassword on 2/24/2010 1:43:04 PM , Rating: 2
You are missing the point there.

Border agents would have authorization to destroy citizens' personal property, such as iPods, if they suspect it to contain infringed works.

You don't even have to have music/video/anything else on your device - I'd suspect you anyway. Also I think there is a magnetic memory devices in your shirt buttons, so let's destroy it. Oh, you're a girl? That bra looks counterfeit too!

ratification and supercedence
By rika13 on 2/23/2010 11:53:38 AM , Rating: 2
congress has to ratify and enact this crap, considering that the democrat congress already is hated and has to worry about staying the majority, itll be like putting out a fire with gas

RE: ratification and supercedence
By Spivonious on 2/23/2010 11:56:53 AM , Rating: 2
Plus if it does get ratified, it's the Supreme Court's job to knock it down, being as it's as unconstitutional as you can get.

RE: ratification and supercedence
By puckalicious on 2/23/2010 1:20:06 PM , Rating: 5
You mean our corporate bought and paid for supreme court? The one that recently ruled that money is the same as speech so that corporations (even foreign ones that have a US subsidiary) can spend as much as they want to influence our political system?

Democracy has already been sold off to the Corporatists. Pretty soon we'll be run by the Corporatist Party that controls everything. We'll be fleeing to China in order to improve our lives and regain some freedoms.

RE: ratification and supercedence
By clovell on 2/23/10, Rating: 0
RE: ratification and supercedence
By geddarkstorm on 2/23/2010 2:02:37 PM , Rating: 4
What? The Court should never have ruled that a corporation has the right to free speech like an individual. That's beyond dumb. And it has now given corporations immensely more power in our own country than we, as individuals, could ever have. Due to their conglomerate resources which nearly no individual can muster alone.

A corporation should NOT have rights of any kind. There should be business laws and contractual bounds that define the relationship of individuals/governments/corporations to corporations, so that disputes can be managed and clear rules of market followed, but not -rights- nor -freedoms-.

Seriously, did you read the article? Who are things like this being passed for? Not us individuals! It is neither for the common defense nor the common good! It is solely the power of the corporation being wielded through our government to gain what they want at our immense loss of freedoms, privacy, and rights. If it passes anyways. But at this rate, I wouldn't be surprised.

RE: ratification and supercedence
By wookie1 on 2/23/2010 2:29:50 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, that's absolutely right. You have the freedom of speech, and you have the freedom of assembly, but under no circumstances should you be able to speak freely while assembled!

RE: ratification and supercedence
By geddarkstorm on 2/23/2010 3:34:21 PM , Rating: 4
A corporation is not an assembly, it's a business entity, and has nothing to do with assemblies of people speaking freely (e.g. about ideologies and political matters). That's what organizations are for :P.

Now, a corporation could donate to an organization with particular views on trade laws and other business laws. And then that organization could go out, share its views, recruit more members, and build political momentum and pressure on the government to change, stop, or enact legislation.

But that is a degree of separation (even if the organization is staffed from individuals from the corporation), and far different from direct lobbies, which basically bribe officials to swing their way, and have nothing to do with the "voice of the people".

That is, an organization has to actually get masses of people on its side and they put pressure on the gov via votes and initiatives and rallies. That's how the process is supposed to work. The above decisions by the SC allows corporations to bypass that completely and act as their own voice by... bribing. Giving away unlimited amounts of money to "buy" votes in the senate/house.

RE: ratification and supercedence
By clovell on 2/23/2010 3:48:20 PM , Rating: 1
You cutting with a gamma knife here trying to distinguish between a corporation, an assembly, and an organization - the three overlap quite often.

By geddarkstorm on 2/23/2010 4:21:04 PM , Rating: 3
Not at all. They are viewed very distinctly by the law. Don't obfuscate things by attempting to equate a corporation as a mass of individuals bought together by a common ideal, like it is for an organization (permanent) or assembly (transient).

A corporation is usually not even a mass of individuals brought together for a /common goal/, other than simply to be /employed/. In short, it's usually a mass of individuals just plying their trade to make money. The corporation in turn then profits from the aggregate work power of its force, which it directs to produce specific product as it deems fit. This has /nothing to do/ with political views, ideologies, beliefs, or any of that in any way, shape, or form. Corporations are about one thing, and one thing alone: the bottom line.

And that's how they are supposed to work, what they are supposed to be about. That's their role and purpose. But, the 1800's taught us they need to be separated strictly from government and political affairs.

As, again, their purpose just for the bottom line conflicts often for the "common good". They are constantly in conflict and competition with each other, and with that singular goal to make more revenue, the common good can not be, usually, on their mind. It isn't their purpose. This is itself in strict conflict with organizations/assemblies (the common good of the individuals making those up by ideological choice and similarity) and the government (singular role is for the common good of the entire nation; a very hard balancing act).

No, a corporation is never a group of people come together for the purpose of exercising free speech. It is starkly different from an organization and assembly. The only thing a corporation shares with the other two is that there's more than one individual person making up the "entity".

RE: ratification and supercedence
By wookie1 on 2/23/2010 5:00:56 PM , Rating: 3
How is this "organization" that is collecting money from corporations and other sources really any different than the corporations that are giving them the money? They collect money, and pay a staff of people to create and run television ads and whatever. Maybe some money is donated to some candidates' campaigns also. Is this some type of corporation that would be treated specially compared to its donors?

RE: ratification and supercedence
By geddarkstorm on 2/23/2010 5:20:12 PM , Rating: 3
Yes, yes they are really, and very different.

One doesn't work at McDonald's because one believes in the inherent goodness of a well crafted Big Mac.

One doesn't choose to work for ATi rather than Nvidia because the person is in support of Obama. That'd just be silly, the companies have nothing to do with that.

Or, you wouldn't quit your job and jump on a lesser paying competitor because your political views on free trades laws changed, now would you?

You do not work for your job because you believe in some political or ideological view, in general. You work because you can get that job, you agreed to the pay, and you found the responsibilities and tasks required for that job agreeable.

Now, contrast this to someone who joins Greenpeace because they feel strongly about the environment. They don't donate to Greenpeace rallies so they can afford a new car, or volunteer so they can pay off debts.

Someone else may join the NRA because they feel strongly for gun rights. Again, nothing to do with whatever day job they hold, usually (they could be a gun worker, sure).

Now, companies that could profit from green tech may donate to Greenpeace. Gun companies that profit from gun sales may donate to the NRA. But Greenpeace is completely different from Bloomtech, and the NRA is completely different from Beretta. Their interests may overlap, but it's in general for whole market segments instead of individual companies -- ideologies are /big/. The organizations may lobby congress, yes, but they do that with money from their supporters (which can include many, often competing, companies), not from money gained by selling the products they are lobbying about, like a corporation does (and often to give them a leg up over their competition within their same market segment). See?

Are you starting to see? Don't let the complexities of the system blind you to the simple forcings behind it all. The differences are like night and day.

A corporation could donate to a cause because it could benefit the corporation, but there's more people in the organization, more interests, more ideals, than the benefit of that single corporation. And it also plays by different rules. Organizations are the voice of the people who make it up; a corporation's "donation" is the voice of the executives of that corporation.

Here's another example. If ATT could, it would lobby to have legislation changed to destroy Verizon, would it not (let's bring back the 1800s!)? That would help ATT's revenue; get back its customers. Heck, it's been trying, through courts and other methods. Would this benefit the market, the consumer? ATT's donations and lobbies aren't for women's rights, now are they? They aren't for an ideal, they aren't for a political view, they aren't for a purpose other than to put ATT even more in the black.

RE: ratification and supercedence
By wookie1 on 2/23/2010 10:07:43 PM , Rating: 1
Yes, I understand, and I'm glsd the founding fathers did not try to delineate which orginazations may and may not speak freely. So by your logic, the only organizations that may speak freely are those that are composed of people that generally agree on some basic topic.

"Here's another example. If ATT could, it would lobby to have legislation changed to destroy Verizon, would it not (let's bring back the 1800s!)? That would help ATT's revenue; get back its customers. Heck, it's been trying, through courts and other methods. Would this benefit the market, the consumer? ATT's donations and lobbies aren't for women's rights, now are they? They aren't for an ideal, they aren't for a political view, they aren't for a purpose other than to put ATT even more in the black. "

This happens every day. Mattel lobbies for 3rd party lead testing after their toys have been found to be tainted, which shuts out the mom and pops, and then also gets an exemption so that they can use their own lab to do the lead testing when others can't. Many other examples exist, especially with anything that requires licensing.

As for the complexities of the system, it really isn't very complex. People are free to assemble. Assembled organizations are free to speak. That's the way it is. You seem to be so worried that corporations that operate for profit have these rights, I don't understand. If we have to determine the motive for every organization's speech before it can be allowed, who will be empowered to make this determination? Perhaps some people would prefer that the NRA not be allowed to speak, or ACORN, or Greenpeace, or the SEIU, whatever. Too bad, it's a basic freedom in this country preserved by the constitution. You're free to not listen or to disagree, as is everyone else.

RE: ratification and supercedence
By Kurz on 2/24/2010 10:19:07 AM , Rating: 2
Though there is a distinict difference between push legislation for profit or pushing legislation for to protect the majority or a minority. Or push for the common good.

I have to agree with geddarkstorm.

RE: ratification and supercedence
By clovell on 2/23/2010 3:43:15 PM , Rating: 2
> A corporation should NOT have rights of any kind.

But, in reality, it does. And that's the issue at the heart of all the ruling. A corporation is composed of individuals, but is treated as a separate entity, with many of the same rights of an individual. By revoking an corporations rights to spend money in this manner, as an expression of speech, it sets grounds for the revocation of the right of other assemblies of individuals to express their views via financial contributions.

What you're proposing is a new definition of a corporation, which is another matter somewhat outside the scope of the case.

RE: ratification and supercedence
By geddarkstorm on 2/23/2010 4:26:11 PM , Rating: 4
The individuals are not brought together for any other purpose than trading skills for money. The goal is only ever organized bartering, not anything dealing with the good of even the workers -- as they are simply trading with the company, and then the company's product to everyone else. History will give a good lesson in that.

So, what I'm proposing is actually a return to the old definitions. The SC gave the new definition by imparting corporations with individual level rights. By giving them rights, they continued the change in the definition of corporations verses what had been before then; so it is not completely "outside the scope of the case" in that sense. It's why there was a case in the first place :P.

RE: ratification and supercedence
By clovell on 2/24/2010 10:00:53 AM , Rating: 2
Which I support - but remind me - is the American Red Cross incorporated? You see where this is going? I agree with damned near everything you said, and while the definitions of corporations, assemblies, etc. may be quite legally distinct (on paper), in reality, an entity can be more than one.

Words like 'should' and 'ought' bear clarification when we realize that it's not just Big XXX that such a re-defining would affect.

RE: ratification and supercedence
By Kurz on 2/24/2010 10:21:19 AM , Rating: 2
Red Cross is a non profit organization.

By TheEinstein on 2/24/2010 7:40:23 PM , Rating: 3
For years certain 'organizations' have managed to flout the law via acting as if some how they were not a company, corporation, business entity, or otherwise.

Media Matters for instance
ACORN for instance
SEIU for instance
MSNBC (owned by GE aka General Electric)

I could go on, but I think the point is made.

The truth of the matter is that Democrat organizations frequently would get legal 'exemptions' from the law, or would get a judge to rule the law does not apply to them. They would then be a funnel for huge amounts of cash, and huge campaign efforts.

The other company's that would not vote Democrat were stifled with ACLU lawsuits, Secretary of State notices of 'wrong doing' city/county/State/Federal prosecutions, and Senators (and such) threatening them with unholy hell...

This has removed a wrong upon society.

Any claims 'foreigners' will control our elections... missed Clinton and Obama getting Chinese cash , Irish cash, German cash, and so forth. Yeah when it was found... it was 'returned'...

And yet the law which PROHIBITS foreign donations is still in effect. Dutch Shell cannot campaign for anyone here in the United States. GE can... and now they do not even need to go through MSNBC to get their propaganda out. But GE has to use provable US profits to the ads, as does any multinational corporation based in the United States.

Since if I made a certain type of company, and used it to shelter cash I made for a better government (with less taxes) I would lose my voice since it is hard to transfer the cash to myself, instead of spend it from the corporations coffers.

Also what is stock? It's a cash equivalent ownership of a company (sorta, maybe someone else can explain it better for others?). This means if I have stock in a company, and it supports someone I do not, I can dump the stock, and buy into a company supporting my candidate. The CEO may get heard a lot more with his spending of my and others money than I can as an individual.


That said, they can spend their money more openly now (MSNBC is losing them money, but it fits their propaganda needs) and not get smacked for doing so.

By IdBuRnS on 2/23/2010 10:48:32 AM , Rating: 5
And how does some rent-a-cop border patrol stooge know if the music on my ipod is legitimate or not?

By amanojaku on 2/23/2010 10:58:35 AM , Rating: 5
It doesn't matter. With ACTA they can just declare it and take it. And if the guy or gal decides to ANALYZE your mobile device (because not everyone owns an iPod), well, you might be vindicated, but you sure as hell would be delayed. This is global fascism, and it needs to end NOW; these anti-piracy people crossed the line a LONG time ago.

By amanojaku on 2/23/2010 11:08:19 AM , Rating: 2
I forgot to point out that the method used to identify thieves is simple: ISPs. The ISPs are supposed to monitor everyone and provide periodic reports to government agencies that would be created if ACTA is passed. Those agencies would then have a database that border guards would refer to, and if your name pops up your stuff gets scanned if you're lucky, confiscated or destroyed if you're not.

By geddarkstorm on 2/23/2010 12:26:54 PM , Rating: 4
This is beyond outrageous. It breaks every law about due process, personal property, and fair use in the book. I wish I could think of more words, but.. this just ticks me off too much. And right under our noses!

Coupled with the France/Australia article and.. I dunno, what are we suddenly coming to, right out of the blue?

By cochy on 2/23/2010 2:41:23 PM , Rating: 2
Well it's not really out of the blue. The MPAA and other fascist organizations have been working towards this for many years. It's disgusting but the writing has been on the wall for quite some time.

By jimbojimbo on 2/23/2010 11:15:03 AM , Rating: 2
From what the article is saying it doesn't matter if it's legitimate or not. If they suspect it they can destroy it. Basically it's not even a guilty until proven innocent, it's just plain you're guilty.

By Lerianis on 2/23/2010 3:56:32 PM , Rating: 2
Yep, and that is why this law is I L L E G A L! Even if it is ratified as a treaty, the Supreme Court has to throw it out because it is in violation of the Constitution of the United States.

I really want to know how the MPAA and RIAA thought that this law would not be YET A-F'ING-NOTHER hit against them.... if they thought it wouldn't be, they need to be woken up with a frying pan over the head!

By mmatis on 2/23/2010 11:45:48 AM , Rating: 1
Maggot. Pigs. I thank God every time he removes another one of the bastards from office.

RE: Filthy...
By Motoman on 2/23/2010 12:14:07 PM , Rating: 3
...he doesn't vote. Any time a bastard is removed from office, it's done by people who do vote. Or sometimes a police officer.

RE: Filthy...
By TETRONG on 2/23/10, Rating: -1
RE: Filthy...
By Akrovah on 2/23/2010 1:50:19 PM , Rating: 3
He may be refering to death, the ultimate God vote.

RE: Filthy...
By aharris on 2/23/2010 2:06:09 PM , Rating: 3
Or the ultimate Darwin vote, depending on how you look at it.

By Bateluer on 2/23/2010 11:35:25 AM , Rating: 2
Time to start using it on any laptops. Doesn't protect DMPs though, TSA or border guards will not be confiscating my devices without a warrant, period. And, yes, I will make a federal case of it, should the need arise.

RE: Truecrypt
By Low Key on 2/23/2010 1:50:02 PM , Rating: 2
I hate to be the one to ruin everyones hopes but this has more or less already come up in court. United States v. Flores-Montano stated that border patrol agents are allowed to search any item at random. The only difference that the ACTA will have is that it will issue warrants on the spot for any device they wish to destroy. Unfortunately that part of the law is unlikely to be shot down in court and even if it is, the government can make a new court circuit to print out warrants for these seizures.

As much as I hate the thought of the ACTA, it technically stands up to the current interpretation of the constitution. Though that could lead me to a whole other rant about how stupid the supreme court is, I'll stop my ranting here.

RE: Truecrypt
By JediJeb on 2/23/2010 5:48:23 PM , Rating: 2
I guess you could refuse to allow them to confiscate your device, but I also imagine they would refuse to allow you to enter the country until you did. If ACTA gives them the right to issue warrants to do it, then you would be in contempt of court, and that is one tough charge to fight.

RE: Truecrypt
By TheEinstein on 2/24/2010 8:02:47 PM , Rating: 2
I imagine that an encryption system would 'be evidence of theft of IP materials' unless you unencrypted on the spot.

I also imagine merely renaming files wont work since they can check the first and last portions of a file to see if it matches code for any music or video format out there... if so... well renaming it would be clearly an attempt to hide stolen materials.

Heck I would say if they find ANYTHING music related, or movie, encrypted they would just assume right then... "STOLEN".

Word to the wise... Do not put music or videos on your ASUS gaming laptop, or similarly high priced type laptops. Unless you think it's worth being a possible 'first lawsuit' type.

By Pjotr on 2/23/2010 7:07:14 PM , Rating: 3
Why do you say "such as iPods" instead of "media players" or "mobile phones", much clearer examples and without any brand promotion? Do you get paid or have you just been indoctrinated like the rest of media to always use the iWords? Good reporters try to stay neutral.

RE: Commercial?
By Camikazi on 2/23/2010 9:44:13 PM , Rating: 2
Cause most people think Apple iPods were the first media player ever :/ I hear it all the time "Where can I get a good iPod to play my music?", "I need an iPod", they always say iPod but ask me about different brands of them...

RE: Commercial?
By Shatbot on 2/23/2010 11:42:58 PM , Rating: 2
Perhaps, it is pretty synonymous with mp3 player, much like "googling" is for searching. I long stopped worrying about such journalist infractions at DT. Frankly if they can be bothered writing it, I'll read it, just with a large cup of salt.

It certainly ain't no Pulitzer but I read for the tech.

The government shouldn't be enforcing this
By Wellsoul2 on 2/23/2010 12:37:08 PM , Rating: 2
It should be up to the corporations to sue people for minor
stuff. Getting the government involved is not necessary and
a waste of money.

It's all a waste because the big time pirates and criminals
can easily do what they want anyway.

It's already too late in the US with the DMCA and allowing
three or four corporations to buy all radio and Tv.
(They did a good job wrecking it all too)

RE: The government shouldn't be enforcing this
By Uncle on 2/23/2010 1:20:47 PM , Rating: 2
You just answered yourself. Propaganda from the corporations is working. They have you looking at your fellow citizens as criminals while they rob you blind of your rights and property.
"It's all a waste because the big time pirates and criminals can easily do what they want anyway."
Ask your self who are the Big time pirates and criminals.Give yourself a big fat cigar if you guessed that its the people who are enacting the laws that your pissed off at, not the citizens like yourself. Hey these guys are professionals at making you look in the wrong direction while they steel you blind.

By zzeoss on 2/24/2010 4:31:19 AM , Rating: 2
messed up my vote. commenting to annul it. i agree with you.

Total lunacy
By Solandri on 2/23/2010 2:39:01 PM , Rating: 2
The U.S.'s secret ACTA pact would allow border patrol agents in the EU and North America to arrest and fine citizens suspected of copyright infringement.

Currently, under U.S. law, copyright infringement is a civil infraction. When one of the *IAA companies sues someone for copyright infringement, they only have to meet the level of evidence needed in civil court - a preponderance of the evidence. Basically if the evidence says you probably copied the stuff, you lose.

The content industry is doing everything they can to turn copyright infringement into a criminal infraction - proposing jail time and fines large enough to bankrupt 99% of anyone charged, and having government law enforcement do the policing for them. But at the same time they are fighting tooth and nail to keep it a civil infraction. Because if it were a criminal infraction, they would have to meet the level of evidence needed in a criminal court - beyond a reasonable doubt. They're trying to have their cake and eat it too.

Which is not too surprising since they're trying to have their cake and eat it too with the whole purchasing vs. licensing concept. If I buy software, I'm licensing it. The software company recognizes that by buying a license, I've already paid for all the functionality in the new version which was already present in the old version, so they let me upgrade to a new version at a discount. Essentially, by buying the upgrade, I'm only paying to amend my pre-existing license with the incremental improvements present in the new version.

But the media companies? Nope, doesn't matter if you already bought that album on LP, 8-track, cassette, and CD. They still want you to pay full price for the MP3 as if it were a purchase. But they want to be able to control what you do with it as if it were a license.

RE: Total lunacy
By chagrinnin on 2/23/2010 7:44:04 PM , Rating: 2
Ted Kaczynski: You mean "You can't eat your cake and have it too.",...right?

(On a more cereal note, +1 for my thoughts exactly.)

Well that's it...
By Helbore on 2/24/2010 5:39:05 AM , Rating: 2
I'm never buying an expensive laptop again. Just imagine if the border guard takes a shine to it...

"I think there may be illegally copied files on this laptop, sir. i'm taking it away."

"To destroy it?"

"Uhhh, yeah, that's right. I'll, uhhh, destroy it when I get home tonight."

What's to stop these goons taking stuff off you just because they want it?

RE: Well that's it...
By Lerianis on 2/28/2010 3:48:08 PM , Rating: 2
Good point, and one that needs to be brought up IMMEDIATELY...... as I've said, this is an ILLEGAL law that attempts to take away the rights of Americans and other countries citizens, and only the stupid would stand for that.

By greylica on 2/23/2010 12:24:48 PM , Rating: 3
Stop !

Stay quiet, calm down, I will only take your Ipod, and your Laptop, destroy the LCD, and Sell the good pieces on E-bay. I can find anything interesting to make a ''reason'' for it. If your mouth spell a single ''A'' you will be the terrorist of the year. Oh... New Laptop ? Ok, I will destroy the charger, here is the pirated songs...

By Autisticgramma on 2/23/2010 2:16:22 PM , Rating: 3
Depending on who you ask, The American Experiment, may have ended with the civil war, or with the 1913 decision to create the Fed. The ACTA, is an exclamation point on the whole process. The issue here is that there are not enough major players any more, everything has been reduced to the 'Big Three' TV, Movies, Radio, newspapers, Teh Net. Were is the congress that broke up Ma Bell? Where are our muckrakers, oh yea no one left to employ them who isn't on the take.

Force competition, regardless of the corporate whining. Term Limits, Campaign spending limits (Total cap), and vote for the new guy. (jeez just plain vote)

All this, and maybe my kids will have the freedom that I learned about in church and school when I was a kid.

By wiz220 on 2/23/2010 11:59:56 AM , Rating: 2
This is indeed facism, government working for corporations instead of individuals.

NO! I will not fund your profits!
By Kibbles on 2/23/2010 12:13:50 PM , Rating: 2
Who's going to pay for it? The ISPs? The government? Meaning taxpayers? Just so these companies can make more profit?
Making the ISPs monitor the internet for piracy is like making the landlord monitors your shop for shoplifting. I don't know of any retail store where taxpayers are paying for their security. The landlord might be, but even then the rentee is charged a fee for it. You think the government is going to charge a fee to these corporations?
If they want to catch people shoplifting, they provide the evidence themselves. In fact, they usually just ignore it, because it's actually cheaper.

By armulyman on 2/23/2010 12:53:33 PM , Rating: 2
I for one vote that we revolt, toss out our government and institute some sort of voluntary net based democracy.

The most frustrating part of all of this is not having any control.

By wakjob2764 on 2/23/2010 3:21:22 PM , Rating: 2
Congress doesn't have to ratify anything. In 2004 Condi Rice approved and signed the Open Skies Treaty - dropping America's defenses and opening USA to nuclear attack via airplanes - Congress never even heard of it. But now it's law.

We've got to put this big gov't monster back in its cage NOW.

The point of all this of course, is not to stop "copyright infringement" - it's to further raise Americans' costs to prevent another Federal tax surplus like we had in the 90s. It's anti-Apple since Apple doesn't go along with globalization and offshore all its work. It's a power grab - governments hate computers because they give the average person enormous power. Computers give people access to unfiltered news. And it's designed to slow down travel - especially international air travel. If they can destroy the tourism industry and discourage business people from traveling, then it will further slow down the economy.

It's all part of the plan to bring down America's economy because Americans are too productive and tax surpluses pay off the debt that the banksters use to control us.

We need to stop this nonsense NOW. Call or write your Congresscritter and flood them with requests to STOP all non-Congressionally approved "treaties".

By SlyNine on 2/23/2010 3:43:48 PM , Rating: 2
That's what encryption is for. I think encryption should be used 100% for everything. Then they can watch my gargled internet communications all day long. It's not like they can't see sites im connecting to and figure out what I'm doing. They just wont see pictures of my girlfriend unless they suspect me of doing something and take a lot of time looking.

But destroying things at a border based on pure suspicion is F'ed up, to say the least.

Laptop safety
By Complinitor on 2/23/2010 8:59:00 PM , Rating: 2
Here's a good one - take the HDD out of your laptop and store it in your carry on bag. Can't check what they can't use. It's similar to transporting guns - guns in the car, ammo in the trunk.

And don't ever buy anything named Icrap.

This has to stop
By HotFoot on 2/23/2010 12:02:49 PM , Rating: 1
Governments should not be acting this way. Why are agendas being set in secretive conferences? Yes, the governments have to come back and ratify the agreements by passing bills, but truth is the citizens don't have direct control over which bills get passed. My government could pass a bill ratifying this agreement and I won't get a chance to vote against them for some time after that.

Agendas should originate from the people within a country. I think it should be law that political discussions regarding anything be automatically under full disclosure to the voting public. Back-room dealing are done in private in order to exclude stakeholders from participation. This is inherently wrong.

"It's okay. The scenarios aren't that clear. But it's good looking. [Steve Jobs] does good design, and [the iPad] is absolutely a good example of that." -- Bill Gates on the Apple iPad

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