Thursday morning Wikileaks released a second leaked version of the Trans-Pacific Partnership’s Intellectual Property chapter. Leak confirms what many people feared the most – the censorship of the Internet.
To reflect people’s disapproval towards the chapter a Fair Deal Coalition was initiated. The project aims to prevent the Trans-Pacific Partnership from altering copyright laws across the world. So far over 20,000 people have signed up on the online petition to reflect their thoughts on the Intellectual Property chapter.
Some people are appalled by the fact that officials seem to be uninterested in the opinion that citizens have towards various questions. They much rather discuss questions that are highly influential to the public behind the closed doors. Furthermore, people are rarely officially informed about the proposed changes and only sources like Wikileaks makes the information accessible to the masses. It should be regarded as a common sense that in order to create laws that best reflect the needs of all parties the arguments and opinions should be heard from all concerned parties.
Canada opposes the suggestions proposed by the US the most of all the countries in the coalition. The parts of the proposed chart that Canada is opposing the most are talking about the enforcement, patents, trademarks and copyrights.
So far it seems that the opposition expressed by Canada is the biggest obstacle in achieving mutual agreement on the Trans-Pacific Partnership. The next set of negotiations are going to be held in Australia later in October. Seeing the opposition from Canada it is clear there is tension among the countries in the coalition. Furthermore, the leak should intensify the situation even more as now they are observed by the people concerned for their privacy.
If the TPP is signed it will be a free trade agreement that has the most international power ever. The leak suggests that it would bound the countries of the partnership to the laws that are much stricter towards the copyright infringements than the current ones. Moreover, if the chapter is signed, it may criminalize various online activity, reduce our privacy even more than it already is, and affect our online sharing experience.
12 Negotiating nations of the partnership are meeting in Asia this week to debate on the changes. However, the meeting will be behind closed doors and no unauthorized person will be allowed to observe the process. Furthermore, the documents are classified and available only to the 600 lobbyists that are allowed to participate.
The US is trying to persuade other countries to implement stronger internet policies thus violating our rights to privacy. Fortunately, there are still countries that try to oppose the proposition and try to preserve our rights to freely use internet. Nevertheless, the US have always had tendency to get what they want. Therefore, it might be just a matter of time until the US brake the opposition of countries like Canada.
Regardless of were you live though, you should consider improving your privacy as there always are people interested in obtaining data from you that later on can be used against you or others. Furthermore, the number of such people is always growing. Therefore, you should take necessary measures to improve your online privacy. And even if you think that you are not observed by the government, you should not ignore it because the scale that governments observe people is constantly increasing. The experience you are going to receive by using NordVPN will be crucial when it is going to be impossible to do anything online without a VPN and without government knowing about it .