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ACTA = Global Internet Censorship – Now Even Foreign Governments Will Be Able To Have Your Website Shut Down

Global Internet censorship is here.  SOPA and PIPA have been stopped (at least for now) in the United States, but a treaty known as ACTA (the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement) is far worse than either of them.  ACTA was quietly signed by Barack Obama back on October 1st, 2011 and most Americans have never even heard of it.  But it could mean the end of the Internet as we know it.  This new treaty gives foreign governments and copyright owners incredibly broad powers.  If you are alleged to have violated a copyright, your website can be shut down without a trial and police may even show up at your door to take you to prison.  It doesn’t even have to be someone in the United States that is accusing you.  It could just be a foreign government or a copyright owner halfway across the world that alleges that you have violated a copyright.  It doesn’t matter.  So far, the U.S., the EU and seven other nations have signed on to ACTA, and the number of participants is expected to continue to grow.  The “powers that be” are obsessed with getting Internet censorship one way or another.  The open and free Internet that you and I have been enjoying for all these years is about to change, and not for the better.

So how come the U.S. Senate never voted on ACTA?  Doesn’t the U.S. Constitution mandate that all treaties must be approved by a two-thirds vote in the Senate?

Of course it does.

But Barack Obama has gotten around this by calling ACTA an “executive agreement”, which is a load of crap.

Unfortunately, this is the kind of nonsense we are getting out of Obama on a regular basis now.  He has shown endless disdain for the U.S. Constitution.

Some members of Congress are expressing deep alarm over ACTA.  For example, U.S. Representative Darrell Issa is calling ACTA “more dangerous than SOPA“.

There are some members of Congress that are even demanding that ACTA be submitted to the U.S. Senate for a vote.  Unfortunately, their voices are very few so far, and ACTA is getting next to no coverage in the mainstream media.

But this new treaty is very, very serious.  It basically mandates that all Internet communications be constantly monitored for copyright infringement.  Sites like YouTube, Facebook and Twitter will have to monitor accounts for copyright infringement 24 hours a day.

If you are alleged to have committed a violation, you might not just lose your social media account or your website.

You could potentially be sent to prison.

Yes, seriously.

What we are talking about is Chinese-style Internet censorship for the entire globe.

The following comes from a recent Forbes article….

“Why does ACTA matter to the media and citizens?” writes Alex Howard. “Consider the phrase “intermediary liability.” That’s the principle that websites on the Internet, like YouTube, Internet service providers, web hosting companies or social networks, should not be held liable for the content created or uploaded by their users.”

The new rules proposed in ACTA essentially transform Western ISPs into something more along the lines of ISPs in China and other more restrictive nations.

One of the worst elements of ACTA is that it would allow accusers of copyright infringement to completely and totally bypass judicial review.

If you don’t think that ACTA will change the Internet, just check out the following excerpt from a recent article by Paul Joseph Watson….

Under the provisions of ACTA, copyright holders will be granted sweeping direct powers to demand ISPs remove material from the Internet on a whim. Whereas ISPs normally are only forced to remove content after a court order, all legal oversight will be abolished, a precedent that will apply globally, rendering the treaty worse in its potential scope for abuse than SOPA or PIPA.

Big sites like YouTube, Facebook and Twitter may just decide that it is too much of a hassle to monitor millions of pieces of content.  Allowing users to constantly post content on their sites would be a huge risk.  In fact, if they are found to be allowing “copyright infringement”, those sites could be permanently shut down.

The American people need to get educated about this new treaty before it is too late.  There is still a chance that we could get the U.S. Congress to take action against this new treaty.

Under ACTA, Internet service providers will essentially be required to become the police of the Internet.  This was explained in a recent article by Cory Doctorow….

New revelations on ACTA, the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), a secretive global copyright being privately negotiated by rich countries away from the UN: ACTA will require ISPs to police trademarks the way they currently police copyright. That means that if someone accuses you of violating a trademark with a web-page, blog-post, video, tweet, etc, your ISP will be required to nuke your material without any further proof, or be found to be responsible for any trademark violations along with you. And of course, trademark violations are much harder to verify than copyright violations, since they often hinge on complex, fact-intensive components like tarnishment, dilution and genericization. Meaning that ISPs are that much more likely to simply take all complaints at face-value, leading to even more easy censorship of the Internet with nothing more than a trumped-up trademark claim.

One of the big problems with ACTA is that it is way too broad and way too vague.

Vague language allows authorities to “interpret” the law any way that they see fit.

This can often lead to selective enforcement.  Websites that authorities like will be left alone, while those that they don’t like will be harassed or completely shut down.

ACTA was written in secret and it has been pushed through very, very quietly.  The following comes from a recent CNN article….

Like many trade agreements, ACTA is a confusing mess. Even its signatories don’t agree on how it’s supposed to work. The way it’s been pushed forward has also been unruly — talks have been held in secret, without any kind of legislative oversight or input from citizens or public-interest groups. The public only became aware of it in 2008, a couple of years after discussions began, when Wikileaks published a discussion paper. Since then, drafts of the pact have been released to the public, each successively less onerous to critics. Reportedly, though, big media and pharmaceutical lobbyists have been privy to the talks all along

Of course – this is a chance for big media and big corporations to take control of the Internet.

The way ACTA has been pushed on us has been absolutely disgusting.  In fact, one key EU official that was in charge of investigating ACTA has resigned in protest over how this whole thing has gone down.  He says that ACTA is basically being crammed down the throats of the European people….

I want to denounce in the strongest possible manner the entire process that led to the signature of this agreement: no inclusion of civil society organisations, a lack of transparency from the start of the negotiations, repeated postponing of the signature of the text without an explanation being ever given, exclusion of the EU Parliament’s demands that were expressed on several occasions in our assembly.

As rapporteur of this text, I have faced never-before-seen manoeuvres from the right wing of this Parliament to impose a rushed calendar before public opinion could be alerted, thus depriving the Parliament of its right to expression and of the tools at its disposal to convey citizens’ legitimate demands.”

Everyone knows the ACTA agreement is problematic, whether it is its impact on civil liberties, the way it makes Internet access providers liable, its consequences on generic drugs manufacturing, or how little protection it gives to our geographical indications.

This agreement might have major consequences on citizens’ lives, and still, everything is being done to prevent the European Parliament from having its say in this matter. That is why today, as I release this report for which I was in charge, I want to send a strong signal and alert the public opinion about this unacceptable situation. I will not take part in this masquerade.

For much more on ACTA, please watch the remarkable video posted below.  It does a great job of explaining exactly what ACTA is and why we need to be so concerned about it….

The world is changing and the Internet is changing.

If you don’t speak up now, the Internet as we know it today may soon be gone for good.

  • REED RICHARDS

    Michael,

    Well, how about this rather “radical” solution? How about getting your republican wing of the war party friends of yours in the House of Representatives to impeach Obama for this? If they are really alarmed by this “executive agreement” then impeachment should only be seconds away…….

    • Michael

      I wish the Republicans would get fired up over this.

      Michael

    • knightowl77

      To what point?…The House impeached Clinton and the Senate failed to convict…It would be the same again…Right now most amerikans only know that American Idol is due to come on….They ain’t payen attention or mad…at all

  • REED RICHARDS

    OBAMA IS MERELY BUSH II AND OTHERS ON STEROIDS:

    Speaking of loads of crap, Obama is merely taking the Bush era mindset and Bush’s polices and ratcheted up the pain. You can trace everything Obama has done to this point back to Bush, Clinton, Bush I, etc., etc. Every preceeding president has accumulated powers that a succeeding president has either kept or intensified to the nth degree.

    This is why voting for either wing of the war party (dems/reps) is the absolute stupidest thing that amerikans can do but continue to do……………

    • commodester

      You are nothing but an ignorant goob!

      • REED RICHARDS

        commodester,

        Witha a name like commodester, look who’s talking!

  • Cinderella Man

    Enough speaking up. Its time to act. Im getting so sick and tired of this totalitarian goverment trying to take over and control our lives. Why cant they just leave us the hell alone! BTW, Michael I read about you in a Rueters article. They spelled your name wrong but its cool that youre getting some attention! Way to go man! I hear that youre also close to my neck of the woods, welcome to the Northwest! We need more people like you to live around here!

    • Michael

      Yeah I was a little bummed he didn’t spell my name right, but at least they spelled the name of the website right. :)

      Michael

    • Kevin

      Anyone have a link to the Rueters article?

  • Mooeing

    one day i will tell my kids about when the internet was free and they won’t believe me.

    • Alyssa

      Isn’t that sad? :(

  • William

    There is a very distinct and well identified group of people who control/own/operate essentially ALL of the media outlets in America, from broadcast to cable to print to publishing. The internet has thrown a wrench into their works to control and run the world for their benefit. To correct this, they continually push for more and more control and censorship of the internet. SOPA and PIPA and ACTA are only the beginning of their effort to CONTROL YOU! These criminals who have a chokehold on the throat of America will not rest until they have total domination. Chekists Napolitano and Pistole are slaves to these criminals.

  • Cinderella Man

    What’s the deal with the new Google privacy that is going into effect on March 1st? So now they want to track every site we visit so they can show us products we might be interested in? I smell a rat. I was born on a Tuesday but it wasnt last Tuesday!

  • BenjiK

    As per your article: “If you don’t speak up now, the Internet as we know it today may soon be gone for good.”

    Of course it will be, and what better way for fascist governments to take away the last medium for free speech we have? This is not only sad, it’s downright SCARY. This is not about protecting one’s “intellectual property”, it’s about blatant CENSORSHIP and CONTROL. A misinformed, MSM-controlled society is much easier to manipulate and enslave.

    For anyone who sees the danger here, PLEASE write, call or visit your Congressman and demand not only to oppose this, but have them put pressure on the current field of political and Presidential candidates to make ACTA a PUBLIC ISSUE. This needs to be a main issue in the coming elections, no matter what side you’re on.

  • mark

    Things will just get worse each year. The government is being run by a bunch of control freaks. They keep on hiring more to replace the employees that retire. In the end we will have a police state kind of like China. Gee, even Obama had a Mao Christmas decoration hanging from the White House Christmas, oops, Holiday Tree.

  • Bob Marshall

    There are still people who believe this and everything that has happened to cause loss of freedom and our liberties wasn’t planned long before 9/11.We know the illegal Iraqi War was planned long before 9/11. The former PNAC made this clear in their plans.

  • Deborah

    Hey Michael…I knew it… they are after my only source of news. We need ground troops now. I keep searching the internet for groups in the NYC area (I live on eastern LI) for “preppers” but whenever I bring things up to anyone they look at me like I am nuts. How can we form or FIND local folks to help us? PS My local church is filled with Target/walmart shoppers who talk about american idol and yada yada yada. Even church isnt safe :(

    • Michael

      Deborah:

      We are just going to have to do the best that we can with what we have.

      God can make a way where there seems to be no way.

      Michael

    • godsofold

      Deborah,

      Check here http://www.preppergroups.com/

      Semper Fi

  • http://TheAmericanDream Ted

    We may have stopped SOPA and PIPA, but how long did it take for the corporate stooges to bust Megaupload without it? If they can’t pass laws to shut down the competition, they’ll just do it by force.

    This idea that we need to do something before it’s too late would be laughable if it wasn’t so sad. I have some bad news for you. The toilet is not only backed up and overflowing, but those who have chosen to hang around are all wading around in a cesspool. There was a time when shutting off the water, or even plunging would have been effective in preventing a catastrophe. The damage is done. Jiggling the handle, and saying, “maybe we better do something before it’s too late.” isn’t going to get whatever plugged up the toilet out of the carpet. I applaud your efforts to raise awareness, but we’re going to be at flood stage soon.

  • godsofold

    Micheal,

    That’s for getting the word out about this.

    Semper Fi

    • Michael

      You are welcome.

      Hopefully people can become just as informed about ACTA as they are about SOPA.

      Michael

  • BeenThere

    I wondered how long before the elite would take control of the internet. We have the precedent of radio last century. Initially, experimenters dominated the ether working out better ways to communicate with and/or entertain each other over it. Then in the 1920s, the elite worked out that control of it meant control of people and big profits. Guess what governments did next? Yes, they regulated it and brought in licensing and total control of who can build and own transmitting stations and/or receiving equipment. Basically, nothing changes.

  • Mark

    A vile situation. The small group of people who control the media are certainly angry that the control they once had (pre-internet) has been wrestled from them in a democratization process (the growth of the internet) that they will no longer stand for. This law is only about pleasing these people, and politicians (of both sides, the stinking scum!) are all too happy to rape the rights of the country and individual to please this small group.

  • http://goto.glocalnet.net/pdn/ Perdavid Nygren

    Intresting how the western world (especially USA) is talking about democracy and is lecturing China and Russia. `Why do you look at the spot of dust in your brother’s eye? But you do not see a big stick in your own eye! Matthew 7:3

  • http://www.thebilderberggroup.info mitchmanx

    http://www.thebilderberggroup.info says the NWO is near, lots of spculation on what bilderberg is up to.

    • commodester

      you are a paranoid schizophrenic goob!

  • http://barryb911.blogspot.com/ BarrysConspiracyWorld

    This is very disturbing, very important material. Given that mainstream media sources are already controlled, the internet is our main last remaining source for information not controlled by the military industrial complex.

    Consider the hoaxes they have perpetrated upon us: Viet Nam, 9/11, the false war on terror (terr), airport security.

    Read about the terror myth here: http://barryb911.blogspot.com/2011/12/terror-myth.html

  • http://gunbanobama.com/ Ron

    Obama is just a puppet, a front man for the real power brokers.
    His appointments to the Supreme Court match Clinton’s.
    Anti-Free Speech, the end of 1st Amendment, Anti-2nd Amendment. The MSM really covered for Kagan, the extreme anti-Christian, anti-White nature of her and Sotomayor was never fully revealed, and when Kagan’s Bolshevik views and unwitting revelation of just WHO the Communists in New York City were, well then the LAWYERS for Princetion scoured the internet through legal threats of her thesis which Conservative blogs had posted. When I read one particular juicy part on the pdf I KNEW it would be gone within an hour, well it took them a little longer, but not much. GONE within a few hours. Oh yeah, FREE SPEECH, just as Orwell wrote about.

    Those who compare this regime to Hitler and the Nazis are pretty amusing, wrong team, this is the BOLSHEVIKS, be afraid, be very afraid, OR grow some cojones.

    Don’t look to the GOP for help:
    Ronald Reagan wrote a personal check to the Americans for Democratic Action, look up the ADA see if you feel all warm and fuzzy.

    In 1986 Regan granted amnesty to ALL illegals in America. Nobody KNOWS just how many millions of ILLEGAL INVADERS got that amnesty, the Feds didn’t check and had NO IDEA. There have been SIX MORE amnesties since Reagan’s.

  • Graham

    The following links may help people understand more of what’s going on and why.

    Here is a list of who owns the “Mainstream Media”:-
    http://www.bibliotecapleyades.net/sociopolitica/sociopol_mediacontrol92.htm

    Here is a list of the “real” Government:-
    http://www.bibliotecapleyades.net/sociopolitica/sociopol_globalelite76.htm

    The “capitalist network” that runs the world:-
    http://www.newscientist.com/mobile/article/mg21228354.500-revealed–the-capitalist-network-that-runs-the-world.html

  • D

    Is it a surprise SOPA and these acts have started to come up now?

    They are made specifically to control alternative forms of information and media from spreading the truth when people are trying to find it within this corrupt world.

    The file-sharing “fight” is just a myth. They don’t what entertainment media you DL for free. They just want to shut down whatever website that exposes them (this one included).

  • mondobeyondo

    One way or another, governments around the world want the free Internet censored. So what are they so afraid of?

    Hmmmm.

  • Caligula

    There’s one really easy way around this: you have to make people enter your site with a username and password or it rings up “forbidden.” It takes like two seconds to do this.

  • Sophia

    The main problem of SOPA and PIPA is that they are both so poorly written to the advantage of bigger corporations. But, ACTA I believe in. having read (okay, must admit- scanned) it through I believe it is definately of another caliber than the other two. Copyright holders (okay i am able to overlook Steven Spielberg) should have the right to their work, and it taken down if they so wish. and what’s so terrible about it being FOREIGN companies and FOREIGN Copyright holders? And come on, Chinese internet censorship is definately not at all about copyright…

    • Meatza

      Those bills give corporations control of the internet. They’re no different from each other and the IP protection stuff is just a facade.

  • BIBA42

    Since all the blame falls on Obama,you should know the answer to that…LET IT BE KOWN TO ALL CANDIDATES, THE WINING VOTE WILL BE GIVEN TO THE CANDIDATE THAT DESTROYS THIS CLANDESTINE ACT..

  • james

    our leaders are ruining the planet

  • Durp

    VOTE THE BUMS OUT! Vote against all incumbents in November!

  • classified

    this country, and the whole world for that matter, are ************* up. :/