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ETNO
European Telecommunications Network Operators' Association

2010

| ETNO

EC104 - ETNO Expert Contribution on the on-going ACTA negotiations

The EU and other countries such as the US are negotiating the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) dealing with the trade of counterfeit goods and copyright infringement.  Leaks from the process point to disproportionate and wide-ranging measures. ETNO wishes to raise concern over the lack of transparency in the process. We are concerned such a sensitive issue is not discussed with all the relevant stakeholders instead of being negotiated behind closed doors. To that effect we call on Members of the European Parliament – particularly in view of the newly acquired powers on trade agreements - to raise the issue well in time before the ACTA negotiations are concluded at the beginning of 2010.

Our main concern relates to the focus of negotiations on the basic “mere conduit” notion in EU legislation. The mere conduit principle is necessary for the benefit of Freedom of Expression, Privacy and an Open Internet. European principles regarding fundamental citizens’ rights and access to knowledge, most recently further defined in the new EU Telecom’s Package, should not be twisted by an ACTA agreement concluded behind closed doors, without public input and democratic participation.

  • The "digital single market” is fast becoming a top priority on the political agenda.  New initiatives are flourishing at both the EU and national level focusing on remaining challenges for the development of creative content and at the international level.
  • The EU and other countries such as the US are negotiating the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) dealing with the trade of counterfeit goods and copyright infringement.  Leaks from the process point to disproportionate and wide-ranging measures including the possibility of users being disconnected from the Internet, which may not reflect user's rights as enshrined in future European Law.
  • ETNO wishes to raise concern over the lack of transparency in the process. We are concerned such a sensitive issue is not discussed with all the relevant stakeholders instead of being negotiated behind closed doors. To that effect we call on Members of the European Parliament – particularly in view of the newly acquired powers on trade agreements - to raise the issue well in time before the ACTA negotiations are concluded at the beginning of 2010 In addition, these negotiations have potential implications on European citizen’s fundamental rights. 
  • ETNO is concerned that the ACTA framework does not distinguish between different counterfeiting issues and therefore fails to deal with the related challenges in the most appropriate way. ETNO is particularly concerned over the approach to digital products and services which may have costly and disproportionate effects on all stakeholders including consumers. 
  • Our main concern relates to the focus of negotiations on the basic “mere conduit” notion in EU legislation. The mere conduit principle is necessary for the benefit of Freedom of Expression, Privacy and an Open Internet. European principles regarding fundamental citizens’ rights and access to knowledge, most recently further defined in the new EU Telecom’s Package, should not be twisted by an ACTA agreement concluded behind closed doors, without public input and democratic participation.
  • To fully understand the problem and ensure proportionality, ETNO calls for an objective and neutral assessments of the situation particularly in light of the claim that ‘Piracy is a growing problem’ in the form of downloading/file-sharing can be justified.
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EC104 - ETNO Expert Contribution on the on-going ACTA negotiations

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Members & Observers - View companies map

  • A1 Telekom Austria Group
  • Albtelecom
  • Altice Portugal
  • BH Telecom
  • BT
  • CYTA (Cyprus Telecommunications Authority)
  • Deutsche Telekom AG
  • Eir
  • Elisa Communications Corporation
  • GO Plc (Malta)
  • Hrvatski Telekom
  • Koninklijke KPN
  • Magyar Telekom
  • Makedonski Telekom
  • Orange
  • Orange Polska
  • OTE
  • POST Group
  • Proximus
  • Síminn (Iceland Telecom Ltd.)
  • Slovak Telekom
  • Swisscom
  • TDC
  • TDF
  • Telecom Italia
  • Telefónica
  • TELEKOM ROMANIA COMMUNICATIONS S.A.
  • Telekom Slovenije
  • Telenor
  • Telia Company
  • Turk Telekom
  • Vivacom
  • AT&T
  • Cisco
  • Ericsson
  • Huawei
  • Nokia
  • Prysmian Group
  • Qualcomm Europe Inc.
  • Verizon

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