Alexander Alvaro (Member of the European Parliament, ALDE, Germany) has asked 9 questions about ACTA, notably about the access by the INTA committee to the drafts documents. He is also asking about changes to substantive patent law (read software patents here):
22 January 2010
WRITTEN QUESTION by Alexander Alvaro (ALDE) to the Commission
Subject: Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA)
1. It was reported that 38 different nations have participated in discussions about the text of the proposed Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). Why should that text be withheld from the public?
2. If there is consensus to make the proposed ACTA public, how promptly can it be made public? And had the Chairperson and Coordinators of the responsible INTA committee full access to the documents?
3. Can an approximate timeline for the negotiation of the proposed ACTA be given?
4. Will the proposed ACTA address issues other than counterfeiting? If so, why?
5. Will the proposed ACTA make changes to substantive intellectual property law, or will it be limited to harmonising enforcement measures? If the former, why?
6. If the proposed ACTA make changes to substantive intellectual property law, why is this initiative being discussed in secret, instead of at the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO)?
7. Will the proposed ACTA impose obligations with respect to the Internet, and if so, why?
8. Some commentators have claimed that the proposed agreement requires a so-called ‘Three Strikes’ approach, whereby Internet services or Internet access providers must terminate the access of Internet users accused of having violated copyright law. Can it be stated authoritatively that the agreement will not require or recommend a ‘Three Strikes’ requirement being implemented by Internet services and/or Internet access providers?
9. Certain US officials have claimed that the agreement will impose no new obligations upon the United States Government. Is it the case that the US Government would undertake no responsibilities as a result of this instrument, and if so, what benefit would accrue to the Commission by entering into such an agreement with the United States of America?