This week in Dallas, trade representatives are secretly negotiating new regulations for the Internet – including intellectual property provisions that could choke off online speech. The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement may be even worse than ACTA; it could tie the hands of democratically-elected legislators and create new, international standards for intellectual property enforcement. Worst of all, Internet users and free expression advocates like EFF aren’t allowed in the room and are forbidden from seeing the negotiated text. Click here to join EFF in demanding a Congressional hearing so lawmakers can learn what’s in the TPP and hear from all affected stakeholders, not just deep-pocketed industry representatives. U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk claims they have made “extraordinary efforts” to include public stakeholders in negotiations, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Like ACTA, negotiations have actively excluded civil society and the public, while welcoming private industry representatives with open arms. EFF’s International IP Director Gwen Hinze traveled to Dallas to demand transparency, but she wasn’t allowed to see the draft text or be present for the negotiations. Here's how Gwen described the tactics the USTR is using to shut Internet users out from the negotiations: Unlike previous negotiation rounds, there will be no official forum for stakeholders to present their views to the assembled TPP country negotiators. Instead, stakeholders are being asked to register their interest in sponsoring a table to provide negotiators who might so happen to stroll past with information on particular topics. The public should be front and center in these negotiations, not relegated to a table outside. Join EFF in calling on Congress for more transparency in TPP. Negotiators can't just shut out the public and their elected representatives. Act now Defending your digital rights,
Maira Sutton International Team Electronic Frontier Foundation Please donate to EFF to support our work.