TPP text threatens Internet freedom: will Trudeau go along?
Final TPP text threatens Internet freedom and will force Canada to overhaul copyright – but will Trudeau go along?
Final text includes provisions to censor the Internet, rob the public domain, and force Canada to import U.S.-style copyright rules
November 5, 2015 – Over a month since a deal was first announced, the full text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement has finally been revealed. The text, published today by the New Zealand government, will force Canada to overwrite its current balanced copyright regime with draconian U.S.-style rules, including a 20 year extension to copyright terms. New Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has yet to confirm whether Canada will ratify the TPP.
Digital rights group OpenMedia has helped rally over 3.6 million people against the TPP’s secrecy, and warns the deal is a serious threat to Internet freedom. Key features include: inducing ISPs to block websites, a 20-year extension to Canada’s current 50-year copyright terms, threats to data privacy, and criminal penalties for circumventing digital locks. While other countries negotiated a transition period, no such provision exists for Canada.
“Today’s release of the full TPP text confirms our worst fears,” said Josh Tabish, OpenMedia’s Campaigns Manager. “For years we’ve warned that the excessive secrecy around the TPP would lead to an agreement that ignored Internet users, artists, and creators in favour of laws that benefit only the giant media conglomerates. The last government traded away our digital future during TPP negotiations – now it’s up to Justin Trudeau to decide whether he’ll implement this bad deal, or actually take a stand for Canadians.”
Because the previous government agreed to the TPP in the middle of an election campaign, the deal still needs to be ratified by Canada’s new Parliament before it can be brought into force.
With Canadians from a wide range of backgrounds speaking out against the deal, it’s shaping up as one of the most controversial items on the new government’s agenda. Professor Michael Geist has estimated that the copyright extension alone will cost the Canadian economy well over $100 million a year.
Canadians are calling on the government to reject the TPP’s Internet censorship plan at https://StopTheSecrecy.net/Canada