The streets of Warsaw were flooded with protesters on Tuesday as Poland’s leaders voiced their support for the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement better known as ACTA.
The international copyright treaty has been called by some groups worse then SOPA and PIPA.
Groups throughout the region fear that ACTA will lead to online censorship in much the same way as SOPA and PIPA and they voiced their anger by marching on government buildings while several popular websites went dark in protest.
Sites that went dark in protest including www.wykop.pl which placed a banner on the site that read:
“Under the banner of fighting piracy and concerns about intellectual property, ACTA will limit the rights of each of us.”
In the meantime Prime Minister Donald Tusk has said the government will not give in to protesters as was the case in the United States when support for SOPA and PIPA was quickly pulled as negative news coverage. Must like SOPA and PIPA the ACTA bill is well supported by the producers of music, movies and various goods, all of which would enjoy further protection under the bill.
At a news conference in support of ACTA the Prime Minister sternly noted:
“There will be no concessions to brutal blackmail.”
Because of various similarities ACTA shares with the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) a group calling itself anonymous (this has yet to be confirmed) began attacking various Polish government websites, shutting some down on Sunday and well into Monday night.
If the Polish government sticks to its guns as it has promised ACTA will be signed into law in Tokyo on Thursday.
The bill once signed into law will be active in a number of industrialized countries that have been seeking a way to fight counterfeiting and IP theft.
ACTA was already signed in October by the United States, Tokyo, Australia, Canada, South Korea, Japan, New Zealand, Morocco and Singapore.
President Obama and former President Bush have both voiced their support for ACTA as a matter of “national security.”
Do you think ACTA is a mistake or a needed measure to stop counterfeiting of goods around the world?