ITRE short-list amendments

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La Quadrature du Net recommends:

  • to reject amendments 32, 39, 40, 41, which minimise the lack of safeguards in ACTA or else refuse to clearly call for a rejection of ACTA.
  • to adopt amendments 2, 24, 38 which point to some of ACTA's most important flaws, and urge for a more balanced approach to copyright and patent enforcement.


Amendment 2 ++

Amendement 2
Paragraph 1
Corinne Lepage (France / ALDE)
++

1. Welcomes the aims expressed by the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) negotiating parties to tackle the trade in counterfeited goods;

1. Welcomes the aims expressed by the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) negotiating parties to tackle the trade in counterfeited goods; regrets, however, that the Council and the Commission did not associate enough the Parliament to the definition of the negotiation mandate and failed to provide adequate transparency over the course of the discussions;

Comments:

Amendment 24 ++

Amendement 24
Paragraph 4 a (new)
Francesco De Angelis (Italy / SD)
++

4a. Recalls that when dealing with the nature of IPR infringements, the European Parliament has underlined the importance of the principle of proportionality(1); is therefore concerned by the fact that ACTA draws no distinction between infringements committed on a commercial scale, and infringements carried out by private users for personal and not-for-profit purposes; believes moreover that ACTA would freeze the possibility for the EP to modify in the future EU IPR legislation, while a review of the IPR Enforcement Directive (IPRED) is foreseen in the next coming months.

Comments: 1. IPRED2 – First reading by the EP, April 2007. Art.2 par. b.

This amendment stresses a crucial principle on which a revision of the EU Copyright law should be based: the recognition of the legitimacy of not-for-profit sharing of cultural works between individuals. Culture sharing should be placed outside of the scope of copyright, e.g. through the creation of a new exception.

Amendment 32 --

Amendement 32
Paragraph 5 a (new)
Pilar del Castillo Vera (Spain / EPP)
--

5a. Underlines the safeguards in the text of ACTA requiring that the procedures foreseen by ACTA be “implemented in a manner that avoids the creation of barriers to legitimate activity, including electronic commerce and, consistent with that Party’s law, preserves fundamental principles such as freedom of expression, fair process, and privacy”; Reminds that the European Parliament Legal Service opinion, SJ-0661/11, concludes that ACTA does not impose any obligations that conflict with fundamental rights, the existing EU Acquis or which require the introduction of new EU legislative acts or amendment of existing ones;

Comment: This amendment overlooks the severe lack of appropriate safeguards in ACTA, which has been stressed by many actors. For instance, in an opinion criticizing the EU Commission's IPR Strategy, the European Economic and Social Committee stressed that “fundamental human rights, such as the right to information, health, sufficient food, the right of farmers to select seeds and the right to culture, are not taken sufficiently into consideration.”(1) This is confirmed by the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media Dunja Mijatović in a letter sent to the President of the EU Parliament.(2)
1 http://www.laquadrature.net/wiki/Against_ACTA#EU_Economic_.26_Social_Committee_-_January_2012_-_Fundamental_rights_not_taken_into_consideration_in_ACTA
2 http://www.laquadrature.net/wiki/Against_ACTA#OSCE_media_representative_-_February_2012_-_EU_Parliament_must_reassess_ACTA_to_safeguard_freedom_of_expression

Amendment 38 ++

Amendement 38
Paragraph 5 a (new)
Ivailo Kalfin (Bulgaria / SD)
++

5a. Takes note of the concerns, expressed by the European Data Protection Supervisor on data privacy and protection of fundamental rights. Notes furthermore that the lack of precision in the ACTA provisions could lead to highly intrusive and unacceptable side effects on the fundamental rights of individuals, particularly in the cyberspace;

Comments:

Amendment 39 --

Amendement 39
Paragraph 6
Giles Chichester (UK / ECR)
--

6. Therefore, feels compelled to call on the Committee on International Trade to withhold its consent to the agreement.

6. Therefore, feels compelled to call on the Committee on International Trade to suspend its work on the proposal pending the ruling by the ECJ.

Comment: ECJ referral would center the debate on legal issues. Through these initiatives, the EP would be perceived as escaping its political responsibility. MEPs must recognize that ACTA is a vaguely worded agreement, circumventing democratic procedures to push a repressive trend in the field of copyright, patent and trademark ; that it would set in stone today's contentious policies (an impact study is still expected on EUCD and IPRED). It would block any possibility for the EU and national lawmakers to propose positive reforms in this field. The ECJ opinion will not deal with these issues, which alone should justify the rejection of ACTA.

Amendment 40 --

Amendement 40
Paragraph 6
Jens Rohde (Denmark / ALDE), Daniel Caspary (Germany / EPP)
--

6. Therefore, feels compelled to call on the Committee on International Trade to withhold its consent to the agreement.

6. Therefore, feels compelled to call on the Committee on International Trade to take into account the above-mentioned concerns in its evaluation of the agreement.

Comment: the concerns expressed in the opinion are strong enough for the ITRE committee to resolutely call on the lead committee to recommend the rejection of ACTA.

Amendment 41 --

Amendement 41
Legislative resolution
Jens Rohde (Denmark / ALDE), Daniel Caspary (Germany / EPP)
--

The Committee on Industry, Research and Energy calls on the Committee on International Trade, as the committee responsible, to propose that Parliament decline to give its consent.

The Committee on Industry, Research and Energy calls on the Committee on International Trade, as the committee responsible, to take into account the above-mentioned concerns in its evaluation of the agreement.

Comment: The concerns expressed in the opinion are strong enough for the ITRE committee to call on the lead committee to recommend the rejection of ACTA.