Fox Creek, AB - November 14: It is being reported that Wikileaks has obtained a copy of the negotiating text for the Trans-Pacific Partnership. The text includes a chapter on intellectual property with provisions that many feared would be included: An extension of copyright terms, further restrictions on fair dealing and greater legal protection for digital locks to name just a few. None of these things are of benefit to the Canadian economy and only serve to create inefficiency through the strengthening of the copyright monopoly. With the London School of Economics being the latest to declare digital piracy a negligible risk to industry and a dearth of evidence that copyright even needs to be at the current length the inclusion of copyright in the Trans-Pacific Partnership would seem unreasonable.

The Trans-Pacific Partnership is a trade treaty being negotiated by U.S. and Japan, Mexico, Canada, Australia, Malaysia, Chile, Singapore, Peru, Vietnam, New Zealand and Brunei. The treaty is being negotiated in secret and only select corporations have been given access to the document. Despite the stated objective of TPP to promote economic and social development in digital economy and technological innovation, and for protecting public health. The revealed content of the IP chapter would do exactly the opposite.

The proposed IP provisions would raise the cost of drugs by shutting out generic drugs to the sole benefit of large pharmaceutical companies. This would expand their monopoly power for a unacceptably long time beyond what is allowed under our already generous patent laws. There are provisions that could lead to increase in internet access cost while reducing internet freedom by making an ISP act as watchdog for the copyright monopoly without due process and burden of proof. It will also restrict educational access which is currently protected under our current copyright law.

“Well this would certainly explain why the negotiations surrounding the TTP have been so secret, now wouldn’t it? After all the uproar surrounding SOPA and ACTA it has become clear to politicians that publicly stating that copyright is to be strengthened, among other things, is a good way to anger your constituents. The IP chapter is a dog’s breakfast of bad ideas and I would hope the Canadian negotiator is objecting strongly to its provisions”, says James Wilson, Leader of the Pirate Party of Canada. The Pirate Party will continue to work for limiting copyright and patent terms and law. A fairer IP law is essential for propagation of culture, improvement of rights of independent artists and inventors, and promotion of innovation beyond U.S. major labels, studios, and pharmaceutical companies.

Canada should withdraw, and not take part in the negotiations, until the text becomes transparent and open to the public. A treaty of economic and social significance should include the citizen and consumer stakeholders at the table. Canadians should resist the subjugation of our democracy. We must protect the public interest over that of a few U.S. corporate interests. This treaty is not in Canada’s economic, social or cultural interest and Canada should not sign it until it is.

The Pirate Party of Canada is a federal political party focused on thoughtful information policy reform, genuine democracy, civil liberties, and the freedom of the Internet. You can find out more online at .


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  1. You bet Canada should withdraw from the negotiations until the text of the treaty is made public, and so should all the other paticipating countries. We cannot let corporations shape our future.

    • David Metcalfe commented at

      Sadly, no chance of that. Harper is such a puppet, he’ll stick through anything he’s told to without regard for the people.

      • What commented at

        He’s no puppet, he’s a sellout. That’s MUCH worse. A puppet is manipulated into believing they’re doing the right thing while a sellout intentionally does the awful thing, knowing what devastation it’ll bring, so long as it adds to his own power/ideals.

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Why Pirate Party?

1. Open Democracy

One of our main founding principles was Open Government. This means an Open Data policy with proactive disclosure and free access to government data. This will allow anyone to scrutinize and catch any error, negligence or corruption early on. Open Government also means increased transparency, and giving constituents real voices. This can be achieved with electoral reform .

2. Mincome / Basic Income Guarantee (B.I.G.)

Unemployment and income inequality is on the rise and we risk a breakdown of social cohesion without a system for resource distribution as we face increased automation. We're shifting from a bureaucratic culture of constant work-demands to a culture of passion, joy, and learning for the sake of learning.

Mincome will lead to cost savings and create a sustainable economy. See our press release for how that can be achieved.

3. Autonomy and Decentralization

We believe that the world works best when individuals are making informed decisions. It is our goal to get all information to all people, so they may be more informed voters, consumers, participants, and teachers. We do not need to force information culture & the hacker ethic onto people we can simply allow them to choose access. We believe the right to choose our identity, name, and appearance is inalienable.

4. Copyright and Patent Reform
Copyright and patent's main purpose was for propagation of culture and innovation. Our current copyright and patent laws are continuously being corrupted due to lobbying by copyright and patent monopolist. These monopolist refuses to innovate and provide wider access and pass on the savings from the new lower distribution cost. Instead the copyright and patent terms keeps getting extended to benefit the few to the detriment of the public interest. The opposite should happen. Copyright and patent terms should be shortened since our new information infrastructure (i.e. the internet) have brought us cheaper and faster means of distributing media contents and information. Mandatory licensing, owner's rights to a non-DRM product, open access to research data and shorter copyright term are some of the natural changes that is needed if we want to create a more open and progressive society. This will ensure future artist and innovator are not hampered by patent and copyright gatekeepers who uses rent seeking law for anti-competitive purposes.

Human beings increasingly have a moral duty to share information with one another. Libraries are stuck in the last century, enforcing artificial scarcity on digital content. If libraries were upgraded for the modern age, we would no longer need filesharing. And let's face it, watching and listening to whatever you want to is fun. It breaks down arbitrary global borders of access and creates a global culture defined by people- not by corporations.

At the Pirate Party- we believe more information leads to better decisions. We believe that more voices leads to better compromises. We believe in Canadians.

Our democracy need a serious upgrade and Pirate Party aims to change politics to the way it should be.


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