Cyberspace Conference, London William Hague to the Governments of the world:
"Do not treat cyberspace as if it belongs to you….You should not imagine for an instant that you can resist the growing force of the tide now flowing for transparency, open information and the free exchange of ideas."
The Internet has become a major source of information for the majority of people on earth. It is a growing tide where all individuals can partake and share information, footage, and images that give people an unedited view of what is really happening in the world. Current governments, Globalist and media companies are not happy with this as it interferes in their global agendas. Where they once could ensure a very censored view on what was happening in the world, now they are indundated by all sides with YouTube clips of actual event footage, photos snapped on mobile phones and user accounts of events on Social Media. The German mass rapings by Muslims is a perfect example, where the government and news sites made out that there were only a few small incidents and in general tried to hush it up and make out that it was a non-event. Within 48 hours they were forced to do a turn around after countless videos popped up online showing hundreds of nonwhite refugees terrifying women and gang raping them.
Free Speech and the US Constitution
Benjamin Franklin, one of the founding Fathers of the United States, said:
“They, who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety."
United States: SOPA and Protect IP Legislation
Congress proposed legislations back in 2011 that would have significantly reduced or eliminated freedom and safety of internet use under the guise of infringement accusations. The bills, called PROTECT IP in the Senate and the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) in the House of Representatives, were supported by incredibly powerful trade groups and industry such as the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) and the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).
As drafted, the legislation granted the government and private parties unprecedented power to interfere with the Internet's underlying infrastructure. The government would be able to force ISPs and search engines to block users' attempts to reach certain websites' URLs. Those supporting the bill were naive at best with most experts theorizing that separate third parties would fly under the radar and entice users to use alternative servers that would be completely uncensored and offering them full access to the internet which would inevitably do nothing but cause new security vulnerabilities.
Wikipedia stood against their introduction and organized an internet blackout in 2012 where thousands of people joined in. The work of these powerful online forces and concerned citizens send millions of e-mails and tens of thousands of phone calls to legislators, and eventually, the bills' supporters agreed to shelve both proposals.
Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement
This agreement does nothing good for either the Internet or the individuals who use it. The main objective of this agreement was extending International IP enforcements into an official agreement and it was pushed in the first place by major US and EU copyright industries and groups wanting the power to enforce intellectual property rights across the world.
It is of significant concern for consumers, their civil liberties, and privance and it also is a huge threat to digital innovation and freedom of information in general.
The EFF have targeted 3 main concerns surrounding this agreement:
Process: The entire agreement was completely negotiated in secret and it completely disregarded all your standard checks and balances by not inviting input from parliament, policymakers, and citizens. After they completed 8 rounds of negotiation, only then did they release the text of the agreement to the public in 2010.
Provisions: It would require signatory countries to enact new IP enforcement measures that would call for restrictive rules for the Internet that raise significant potential concerns for users’ free speech, privacy, the ability to innovate, and due process rights.
Enforcement: The creation of the "ACTA Committee", constituting non-elected members to oversee ACTA implementation and interpretation with no legal obligation to be transparent in their proceedings.
"We are here to reveal to you an arcane legal trick, which will be used to take away your freedom starting in June 2012.
Your governments have been secretly negotiating the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement or ACTA as it is known.
The title is misleading.
The true goal of ACTA is to crush the internet, as we know it, and to take away your freedom.
We and other good people of this Earth have been pointing out a major problem with ACTA. The text of the agreement is extremely vague and can be interpreted in many ways. If read one way, ACTA does not endanger your freedom. If read another way, ACTA is the worst thing that has ever happened and will be used to take away your freedom and to crush the internet as we know it.
Supporters of ACTA are saying that each country, which ratifies ACTA, will choose their own interpretation. This is the biggest lie ever told.
Just like any other international agreement ACTA must be interpreted according to the Vienna Convention of 1969.
Article 32 of the Vienna Convention says that if any part of a treaty is ambiguous it must be interpreted based on documents produced during the drafting and negotiations phase of the agreement. For Acta these documents are classified and have never been made available to the public through official sources. Such secrecy has never surrounded any other global treaty in modern times.
In essence the true meaning of ACTA is being kept secret even from the governments who sign it.
Our friends at Wikileaks have obtained a small portion of these secret documents and their content is chilling. When all major governments of the world have signed and ratified ACTA, the secret documents will be gradually made public and the true meaning of ACTA will be revealed to the nations of the world.
Article 27 of the Vienna Convention says that all international treaties take precedence over any internal laws. The secret parts of ACTA will take precedence over any national laws. Governments will have no choice. Citizens will have no choice. The internet, as we know it, will end."
ACTA in the UK: 10 years in jail for a download?
After hackers from the activist group, Anonymous attacked practically all US government websites in retaliation, the authorities are now considering adopting their own home-grown anti-counterfeiting laws like PIPA (Protect Intellectual Property Act) / SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act).
'ACTA defeat a huge victory for online freedom & democracy'
The European Parliament has rejected ACTA, a controversial trade agreement, which was widely criticized over its likely assault on internet freedoms. Supporters of the treaty suggested postponing the crucial voting at the Parliament plenary on Wednesday, but members of the parliament decided not to delay the decision any further. MEPs voted overwhelmingly against ACTA, with 478 votes against and only 39 in favor of it. There were 146 abstentions. Citizen advocacy group founder Jeremy Zimmerman believes copyright laws must be reformed, but not at the expense of the online users.
WORLD LOBBY FOR THE INTERNET Web Wars of Secrecy: Hackers for hire in demand by govt's
As the internet becomes more readily available across the Arab world, it's giving rise to a generation of hackers - eager to break free of government censorship with the help of cyber weapons.
The Internet Association
"There is strength in numbers and no one knows this better than the online giants."
Facebook, Google, and Amazon have joined forces among a whole host of internet businesses to create an e-lobby.
The aim of this association is focused on freedom of the internet, but whose freedom are they really fighting for? Yours or theirs?
Internet Association's mission is to foster innovation, promote economic growth, and empower people through the free and open internet.
The internet creates unprecedented benefits for society, and as the voice of the world's leading internet companies, we ensure stakeholders understand these benefits.
There is strength in numbers and no one knows this better than the online giants. Facebook, Google, and Amazon have joined forces to create an e-lobby.
Australia's Copyright Amendment (Online Infringement) Bill, 2015
"It's a very dark day for the internet in Australia because there's been bipartisan support for this Luddite censorship bill"
Dr. Rimmer, Australian National University, College of Law
The Australian government successfully passed this bill in 2015 which will allow rights holders to use Federal Courts to gain approval to block overseas websites that have a primary purpose of facilitating copyright infringement. Upon success of their court request, large Australian ISP's such as Optus and Telstra will be required to comply with the order and disable access to that site.
We have previously seen large fallout to the government and security agencies attempting to retain control on these types of issues, and we think specifically of the time that ASIC blocked by accident 250,000 websites because they gave incorrect information to ISP's. After months of being offline, and countless political and consumer pressure the reasoning behind the block was revealed and ASIC was left red-faced. Dr. Rimmer a law expert from Australian National University in Canberra, has stated his concern about the amount of collateral damage he expects from this bill. Dr. Rimmer said thousands of legitimate sites not targeted by the regime could be blocked by internet service providers will likely get to choose how to block websites under the new laws.
The other questionable practice that Dr. Rimmer also finds worrying is the government's ability to misuse the underlying purpose of the bill. Both local and overseas governments will be able to use it to censor information provided to sites like WikiLeaks by whistleblowers. They can still use this bill as the reason under the law as government information is often protected by copyright.
"It wasn't until after the media and Greens Senator Scott Ludlam got involved that the Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy revealed to tech publication Delimiter that ASIC was behind the censoring."
Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act (CISA), 2015
Even though countless attempts to destroy internet freedom has been thwarted in the US, the government is back with yet another iteration in 2015 - this time called CISA. Millions of people have demanded the end to these attempts at mass surveillance. It has been stopped so many times under names such as CISPA, PCNA, NCPA, SOPA, and now CISA. The worst part about the most recent attempt is that American intelligence agencies deliberately used confusion by slipping this into a bill on Omnibus spending that Congress had little choice but to pass. They also only released the 2000 plus page bill at 2 am in the morning less than 24 hours before they were required to vote meaning most people didn't have a chance to fully understand what it was doing.
This latest bill is even worse on privacy than previous bills, and this one page PDF tables out the different bills for comparison: Summary Comparison Chart
Jennifer Granick at Just Security writes an excellent summary of this bill and what it means for Americans here.
"So this bill isn’t just about threat information sharing, it’s about enabling ISP monitoring in ways beyond current law that have not been clearly defined or explained."
What's wrong with CISPA?
As it's written in the most current version, CISA won't protect us from cyber threats, but it will violate our 4th Amendment right to privacy.
- The NSA wants it badly because it will give them more access to your data, and give companies immunity for legally shaky programs like PRISM.
- It lets the government spy on you without a warrant.
- It makes it so you can't even find out about it after the fact.
- It makes it so companies can’t be sued when they do illegal things with your data.
- It allows corporations to cyber-attack each other and individuals outside of the law.