EU-U.S. Trade Talks Face Growing Opposition

February 28, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

European Union ministers are acknowledging that free trade talks between the European Union and the United States are being continually opposed by advocacy groups who are fighting against such issues as globalization, multinationals, and more. The rise of these groups' influence on negotiations, along with reports that the U.S. has been spying in Europe and that trade agreements are favored by big companies (who are helping to craft the language of some of these treaties) has proven to be a challenge to EU officials.

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The Ghost of ACTA Haunts EU Trade Agreements

October 23, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

In the early part of 2012 citizens of the world - particularly in Europe - took to the streets to protest, signed petitions, and gave politicians and bureaucrats an earful of disdain over the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). All of those efforts paid off, with members of the European Parliament inevitably voting against it.

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La Quadrature du Net: CETA Will Impact Internet Freedoms

October 21, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Canadian Internet rights group La Quadrature du Net warns that a trade treaty between Canada and the European Union will ultimately hurt internet freedoms in both regions if its ratified. CETA recently reached "agreement in principle" status during a meeting between José Barroso, the President of the European Commission, and Stefen Harper, the Canadian Prime Minister.

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Wargaming CEO: Industry can Reach $200 Billion by 2016

September 25, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Recently market research firm Newzoo estimated that the global video game market would reach revenues of around $86 billion by 2016, but Wargaming CEO Victor Kislyi believes that the industry can reach $200 billion in revenue by then.

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EFF Warns Americans About the Trade Promotion Authority

August 5, 2013 -

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is warning American citizens that something foul is happening in D.C. related to trade agreements and copyright laws. According to the EFF, U.S. lawmakers want to pass a bill that limits their own ability to improve or remove language in agreements like the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement or the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). Yes, you have read that correctly.

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CleanIT Act Makes SOPA and PIPA Look Tame in Comparison

October 1, 2012 -

A new bill being secretly passed around to certain members of the European Parliament is making headlines today because of its eerie similarities to legislation like SOPA, CISPA and ACTA. The bill is called "CleanIT," and it is currently in the early stages of being refined. But the draft has been leaked to the public, much to the chagrin of its main supporters and it has a lot of horrible provisions.

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Rights Groups Warn that TPP May Bring Back Provisions from SOPA and PIPA

September 10, 2012 -

Rights groups are turning up the rhetoric on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), claiming that the new treaty being negotiated by the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) and other countries in the Pacific Rim will bring back controversial copyright enforcement provisions pushed by some US policymakers in recent bills and treaties such as ACTA, SOPA and PIPA.

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Demand Progress Urges Political Parties to Make 'Internet Freedom' Part of their Platforms

August 15, 2012 -

Internet advocacy group Demand Progress launched a campaign this week to urge Democrats and Republican lawmakers to make a commitment - in writing - that they will protect internet freedom when creating new legislation and to make the issue part of their respective platforms.

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Michael Geist: European Commission's Assurance on CETA Don't Add Up

July 26, 2012 -

As more details emerge on the secretly negotiated trade agreement between Canada and the European Union, online rights activists are voicing their opinions on why it is a bad idea and why they are getting a strange sense of déjà vu. Critics of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, which was ultimately voted down by the European Parliament, have warned that those forces in Europe and other parts of the world behind such treaties will continue to push parts of that treaty that most citizens do not want.

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Report: ACTA Provisions Rise From the Grave in CETA

July 11, 2012 -

Less than a week after the European Parliament voted to soundly reject the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), opponents of that measure are crying foul on a back door deal to get some of the treaty's worst provision enacted as part of another treaty.

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UN Special Rapporteur on Health Praises ACTA Defeat

July 9, 2012 -

The United Nations Special Rapporteur on health rights, Anand Grover, has praised the European Parliament's recent vote to reject the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), calling it a step in the right direction in ensuring that citizens of the world have access to affordable and essential medication. The European Parliament overwhelmingly voted against the international anti-piracy trade agreement on July 4.

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European Parliament Strongly Rejects ACTA

July 4, 2012 -

The European Parliament has officially rejected the controversial Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). The Parliament voted 478 to 39 to reject the ACTA, which means that it will never be implemented in any member country of the European Parliament. The news is not surprising, given that five committees voted against the treaty leading up to the showdown on the floor of the European Parliament this week. It also didn't help that ACTA was negotiated in secret and citizens in various member countries protested against it because of its loose and murky language.

A Declaration of Internet Freedom

July 2, 2012 -

In an age where acronyms such as SOPA, PIPA, ACTA, CISPA, CSA, and more put fear into the hearts of Internet users all over the globe it's time that someone stand up and clearly define what rights we should have on the Internet. Like the Continental Congress did when America declared Independence way back in 1776, the Entertainment Consumers Association (ECA) and other advocacy groups have come up with our own version of a "Declaration" for the Internet age.

PSA: Full ACTA Vote in European Parliament July 3

June 29, 2012 -

On July 3, the full European Parliament will finally get to vote on the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), and going into that vote things don't look good for the treaty. Yesterday Australian lawmakers voted to reject ratification of the treaty joining a growing chorus of European countries that believe the law violates the rights of its citizens in the name of fighting counterfeit goods and copyright infringement.

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EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht Will Not Give Up on ACTA

June 26, 2012 -

As this story from Techdirt points out, the EU commissioner responsible for the ACTA treaty, Karel De Gucht, has no intention of giving up on it. He seems to be oblivious to the recommendations to reject it from the five EU committees that have already voted on it, and will likely ignore the ruling from the European Court of Justice (ECJ) on whether ACTA is compatible with EU law.

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Dutch Government: We Will Not Ratify ACTA Even if Approved by the European Parliament

June 25, 2012 -

No matter what happens in the European Parliament next month with the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), the Dutch government said today that it will not ratify the treaty. Last week a fifth European committee - the Committee on International Trade - voted to recommend that the treaty be rejected by the full Parliament when it votes on it in the first week of July. But that matters not a lick to the Netherlands either way.

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European Parliament’s Committee on International Trade Rejects ACTA

June 21, 2012 -

Yet another European Parliament committee has decided to reject the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). By a vote of 19 to 12 the European Parliament’s Committee on International Trade (INTA) soundly rejected the treaty.

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European Parliament’s Committee on International Trade To Vote on ACTA June 21

June 19, 2012 -

The European Parliament’s Committee on International Trade (INTA) will vote on whether to recommend approval or reject ratification of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) on June 21. The Committee has several different avenues it could take in making a recommendation at this point; it could amend the treaty (as some want Parliament want to do), it could recommend waiting to hear from the European Court of Justice's reviews or approve the draft report by MEP David Martin (who says it should be rejected).

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ACTA Rejected by Fourth European Parliament Committee

June 5, 2012 -

The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) has now been rejected by four European Parliament committees according to a press release issued by the European Union. The latest committee to urge the full parliament to reject the treaty is the Development Committee. Prior to that rejection, the Civil Liberties Committee, Industry Committee, and Legal Affairs Committee gave similar recommendations. In a vote of 19-to-one (three abstained), the Development Committee recommended that Parliament reject the treaty.

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Three Key EU Committees Vote Against ACTA

May 31, 2012 -

If the early votes in the European Parliament related to the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) are any indication, the controversial treaty will not survive a final vote later this year. Three key European Union committees have voted against ACTA: the Committee on Legal Affairs (Juri), Committee on Civil Liberties (LIBE) and the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE). All three committees expressed "opinions against Acta," according to the BBC.

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Sen. Ron Wyden Introduces 'Congressional Oversight Over Trade Negotiations Act'

May 24, 2012 -

U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-ORE.), Chairman of the U.S. Senate Finance Subcommittee on International Trade Customs and Global Competitiveness, introduced legislation this week that would clarify the USTR’s obligation to share information on trade agreements with Members of Congress. Wyden, who spoke on the floor of the Senate about why this is necessary, has been a critic of the Administration’s handling of international treaties including ACTA and most recently the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP).

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U.S. State Department: A Circular 175 Memorandum for ACTA Was Never Issued

May 18, 2012 -

In February the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) submitted a Freedom of Information Act Request to the State Department asking them to release documents related to the department's review of ACTA. The State Department is required to prepare a "Circular 175 Memorandum," whenever an international treaty is going to be negotiated. According to the EFF's Gwen Hinze, the Circular 175 is required "for all treaties and other international instruments that bind the United States as a matter of international law under 22 CFR Part 181.

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Fifty U.S. Legal Scholars Urge the Senate to Review ACTA

May 16, 2012 -

Fifty legal scholars in the United States have written an open letter to the Senate urging them to use their rights under Article I of the Constitution to force the Obama Administration to submit the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) to Congress from approval. Under the U.S. Constitution the Senate must approve all International treaties before they can be signed by the United States government.

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European Commission Refers ACTA to the European Court of Justice

May 11, 2012 -

The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) will get a judicial review in Europe's highest court, according to the Wall Street Journal (registration required). The European Commission has asked the European Court of Justice - the highest court in Europe, to review the treaty and make sure that it is compatible with current European treaties and the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union.

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Switzerland Will Not Sign ACTA

May 9, 2012 -

According to web site Geneva Lunch, the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) quietly suffered another setback today in Switzerland where the Swiss Federal Council said it would not sign the agreement. 

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Germany's BMZ, Australia's Greens Wage a War of Words Against ACTA

May 8, 2012 -

The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) continues to run into hurdles in various parts of the world. Today those hurdles include a sharp rebuke from Germany’s Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and Australia's Green party.

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EU Commission Vice President: A World without ACTA or SOPA

May 4, 2012 -

According to a Fox News report a top European Union official is implying that the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) will not be ratified by the European Union this summer.

"We are now likely to be in a world without SOPA and without ACTA," European Commission Vice President Neelie Kroes said in a speech on Friday in Berlin, Germany.

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ECA President Hal Halpin Talks CISPA and More at Destructoid

April 27, 2012 -

Entertainment Consumers Association (ECA) president Hal Halpin recently sat down with Destructoid to talk about the dangers consumers face at the hands of corporate interests and by politicians creating new regulations and laws that stifle free speech and invade our privacy. We'll update our story later when the full interview goes live, but this quote from Halpin deals specifically with the issue of CISPA and laws like it:

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European Parliament Rapporteur Recommends Rejection of ACTA

April 18, 2012 -

The controversial international anti-piracy agreement known as ACTA may soon be put to a bitter end in Europe. The European Parliament member responsible for monitoring the treaty’s progress through the European Union is saying publicly that it should be soundly rejected.

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Internet Law Expert Says the War Against SOPA is not Over

April 9, 2012 -

Internet law expert Lawrence Lessig says that those who think that the fight over the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) is over are dead wrong. Lessig is the Roy L. Furman Professor of Law and Leadership at Harvard Law School and director of the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics at Harvard University.

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MaskedPixelanteNumber 3: Night Dive was brought to the attention of the public by a massive game recovery, and yet most of their released catalogue consists of games that other people did the hard work of getting re-released.04/17/2014 - 8:46pm
MaskedPixelanteNumber 2: If Humongous Entertainment wanted their stuff on Steam, why didn't they talk to their parent company, which does have a number of games published on Steam?04/17/2014 - 8:45pm
MaskedPixelanteNumber 1: When Night Dive spent the better part of a year teasing the return of true classics, having their big content dump be edutainment is kind of a kick in the stomach.04/17/2014 - 8:44pm
Matthew Wilsonhttp://www.giantbomb.com/articles/jeff-gerstmann-heads-to-new-york-takes-questions/1100-4900/ He talks about the future games press and the games industry. It is worth your time even though it is a bit long, and stay for the QA. There are some good QA04/17/2014 - 5:28pm
IanCErm so they shouldn't sell edutainment at all? Why?04/17/2014 - 4:42pm
MaskedPixelanteNot that linkable, go onto Steam and there's stuff like Pajama Sam on the front-page, courtesy of Night Dive.04/17/2014 - 4:13pm
Andrew EisenOkay, again, please, please, PLEASE get in a habit of linking to whatever you're talking about.04/17/2014 - 4:05pm
MaskedPixelanteAnother round of Night Dive teasing and promising turns out to be stupid edutainment games. Thanks for wasting all our time, guys. See you never.04/17/2014 - 3:44pm
Matthew WilsonAgain the consequences were not only foreseeable, but very likely. anyone who understood supply demand curvs knew that was going to happen. SF has been a econ/trade hub for the last hundred years.04/17/2014 - 2:45pm
Andrew EisenMixedPixelante - Would you like to expand on that?04/17/2014 - 2:43pm
MaskedPixelanteWell, I am officially done with Night Dive Studios. Unless they can bring something worthwhile back, I'm never buying another game from them.04/17/2014 - 2:29pm
PHX Corphttp://www.msnbc.com/ronan-farrow/watch/video-games-continue-to-break-the-mold-229561923638 Ronan Farrow Daily on Video games breaking the mold04/17/2014 - 2:13pm
NeenekoAh yes, because by building something nice they were just asking for people to come push them out. Consequences are protested all the time when other people are implementing them.04/17/2014 - 2:06pm
Matthew Wilsonok than they should not protest when the consequences of that choice occur.04/17/2014 - 1:06pm
NeenekoIf people want tall buildings, plenty of other cities with them. Part of freedom and markets is communities deciding what they do and do not want built in their collective space.04/17/2014 - 12:55pm
Sora-ChanI realize that they have ways getting around it, but one reason might be due to earthquakes.04/17/2014 - 4:42am
Matthew WilsonSF is a tech/ economic/ trade center it should be mostly tail building. this whole problem is because of the lack of tail buildings. How would having tail apartment buildings destroy SF? having tail buildings has not runed other cities around the US/world04/16/2014 - 10:51pm
Matthew WilsonAgain the issue is you can not build upwards anywhere in SF at the moment, and no you would not. You would bring prices to where they should have been before the market distortion. those prices are not economic or socially healthy.04/16/2014 - 10:46pm
ZippyDSMleeYou still wind up pushing people out of the non high rise aeras but tis least damage you can do all things considered.04/16/2014 - 10:26pm
ZippyDSMleeANd by mindlessly building upward you make it like every place else hurting property prices,ect,ect. You'll have to slowly segment the region into aeras where you will never build upward then alow some aeras to build upward.04/16/2014 - 10:25pm
 

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