Growing the Internet 12 December 2011

Statement on the Text for the Proposed Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA)

February 2011

The Internet Society would like to formally thank the governments engaged in the negotiation of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) (“the ACTA participants”) for releasing the text dated 3 December 2010.

We encourage each country to make the text available to its citizens in their language/s so that they may have an opportunity to consider the terms of the proposed agreement and its potential implications.

The Internet Society, a member of the broader Internet community, wishes to take this opportunity to provide our preliminary perspective on those parts of the proposed agreement which pertain to the Internet, Internet governance, Internet technologies, Internet intermediaries and/or Internet users. In general, while the proposed ACTA text has improved over the April 2010 version, the Internet Society remains concerned about its potential impact on the development and legitimate use of the Internet. We also repeat our call for greater transparency and true multistakeholder participation, including at the level of local implementation of the ACTA agreement.

The Internet is an extraordinary platform for innovation. It has benefitted from broad participation in both the development and use of Internet technology, services, applications and policy. The Internet’s openness has been critical to its development and continued success. Openness is the key to continued innovation and investment in the Internet and all the associated social, economic, and cultural benefits it brings.

The history of the Internet’s development demonstrates that technology can be used for beneficial, and sometimes unforeseen, purposes. The Internet Society believes, therefore, that legal frameworks should support the open and unrestricted development of Internet technologies and should not limit the development and use of technologies for legitimate purposes.

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