Remember remember, the 4th of July: Internet Freedom in the European Union and the vote on ACTA.
MetadataShow full item record
Brussels, 4 July 2012. The European Parliament addressed one of the most important challenges of the information society. An important vote was casted, which has received an enormous amount of attention in the last couple of months by citizens, civil liberties groups, copyright holders, industries and politicians. All concerned about what implications the vote will bring. All share diverse opinions about the vote’s outcome. All fight for the sake of their own beliefs: the belief of intellectual property (IP) protection or the belief of protecting fundamental liberties. On 4 July 2012, the European Parliament voted against the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA): a multinational trade agreement enforcing intellectual property rights (IPR) for the purpose of combating counterfeiting and piracy. According to civil liberties groups, this agreement would seriously violate our fundamental rights and freedoms on the Internet. Our Internet freedom. Internet Freedom is an umbrella concept that describes the rights of the Internet user to freedom of expression, to have access to any information and free technology, to share and communicate with others in privacy, and to have control over the data used on a neutral and unsurveillanced Internet. These rights are heavily promoted by Internet freedom fighters2 who are giving their own contribution to an open Internet. 2012, a tumultuous year summarizing the debates, presentations, votes and negotiations on ACTA in the Belgium capital Brussels, the main center for international politics. The developments on ACTA have shown us that many individuals are involved with the regulation of Internet. The Internet has grown into a decentralized environment in which the form of regulation is determined by the participation of multiple actors. To analyze the movements and relations of actors involved in ACTA and Internet freedom, and how these are translated in to the establishment of ACTA and Internet freedom, I have used the Actor-Network Theory. These analyses reflect upon what engages each actor to build and defend Internet freedom and ACTA. The relevancy of this thesis is to put the developments of Internet freedom in an academic context. Internet freedom is an interdisciplinary and contemporary phenomenon that needs to be embraced by scholars from different fields and backgrounds who are concerned about the Internet’s future.