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Early reports from the European Parliament’s current session in Strasbourg suggest that some key amendments were passed to the so-called Susta report which remove ISP liability for copyrighted content from the deal that the EU may negotiate in ACTA (the Anti-counterfeiting trade agreement).

The Susta report, prepared by MEP Gianluca Susta, was put to the vote yesterday in the European Parliament. An alternative resolution put forward by the Green group was carried by 309 votes to 232. The full text as voted  isn't yet known but I understand that, among other things,  the EU’s ACTA negotiators have been asked by the Parliament not to deal with ISP liability.  It will be a blow to rights-holder companies which have been lobbying for over two years to make ISPs liable for content. The Parliament also voted out

a suggestion that  ‘qualitative data’ related to Internet traffic should be collected, which would have opened the  door for ISP responsibility.

 

The Susta report is an agenda-setting document for EU policy, and as such it has no legislative force, but may influence future directions for the EU. It’s objective was to put forward proposals for a co-ordinated EU policy related to the external aspects of counterfeiting, and ACTA was included in its remit. ACTA, which is a G8 initiative  being secretly negotiated between governments,  covers Internet downloading and alleged piracy.The European Commission is negotiating on behalf of all member states.

The Susta report also contained  a number of other amendments related to ACTA, aiming to get more transparency in the negotiations,   and on the Internet-related issues. The final version of the report is not yet available, so further details are still unknown.

As I have previously highlighted, it is understood that ISP liability for online content and alleged copyright infringement is on the table at the ACTA discussions.

 

 

Original reporting by iptegrity.com!

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Iptegrity.com is the website of Dr Monica Horten. I’ve been analysing analysing digital policy since 2008. Way back then, I identified how issues around rights can influence Internet policy, and that has been a thread throughout all of my research. I hold a PhD in EU Communications Policy from the University of Westminster (2010), and a Post-graduate diploma in marketing. I am on the Advisory Council of the Open Rights Group.  I’ve served as an independent expert on the Council of Europe  Committee on Internet Freedoms, and was involved in a capacity building project in Moldova, Georgia, and Ukraine. For more, see About Iptegrity

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