NAFTA: Don’t trade away our digital rights

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UPDATE October 1, 2018: Canada has agreed to a revised trade agreement with the United States and Mexico, now known as the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) and our worst fears for digital rights have become true: the deal contains draconian intellectual property and copyright provisions that are basically copied from the TPP.1

But it doesn't end here! The government is currently reviewing the Copyright Act, so make sure to have your say here. The agreement will also now begin a lengthy approval process in which the government will continue to hear from its citizens and decision makers before it rubber stamps the deal. So we must keep up the pressure from every direction and make sure the government knows we won't just let our Internet get traded away.

NAFTA negotiations are ongoing and the Canadian government wants your input.

Bell Canada has already come up with an outrageous proposal to enshrine mandated website blocking in the trade agreement and implement new radical copyright rules that could criminalize our everyday online activities, leading to a major chill on free expression in Canada.1

Use the form below to ensure the government hears from you: don’t let NAFTA undermine our digital rights!

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You remember the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)? The massive 12-nation trade agreement that Canada signed in late 2015?2

Canadians strongly opposed the TPP because it put our digital future on the chopping block. It would have locked us into some of the most restrictive copyright rules in the world: excessively long copyright terms, rigid rules on digital locks — now with criminal penalties — and even a tribunal dispute process that would allow Big Media companies to sue our government for making policies they don’t like.3,4

The TPP was an unbalanced mess, negotiated in secret by hundreds of lobbyists. It put the rights and interests of huge companies above those of the average Canadian.

Now, those same lobbyists want to copy over the worst parts of the TPP into NAFTA — and worse.5

They’re going on the offensive: attacking fair dealing rules that let us share culture and express ourselves freely, taking aim at our copyright warning notice system — even our privacy and Net Neutrality rules are under threat.6,7

We need to make a strong stand, right now. By responding to the government’s consultation and putting your voice on the record, you can help us show the government that Canadians will not accept an agreement that undermines our digital rights.

Send your message today: do not trade away our future.

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[1] Bell Calls for CRTC-Backed Website Blocking System and Complete Criminalization of Copyright in NAFTA. Source: Michael Geist

[2] Chrystia Freeland signs Trans-Pacific Partnership deal in New Zealand. Source: CBC

[3] The Trouble With the TPP, Day 50: The Case Against Ratifying the Trans Pacific Partnership. Source: Michael Geist

[4] Let’s Talk TPP Report. Source: OpenMedia

[5] NAFTA once again becomes battleground for trade-related IP obligations. Source: Osler

[6] Deciphering the U.S. NAFTA Digital Demands, Part One: Intellectual Property. Source: Michael Geist

[7] Deciphering the U.S. NAFTA Digital Demands, Part Two: Digital Economy, Services and Transparency. Source: Michael Geist


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Press: David Christopher | Phone: +1 (888) 441-2640 | Office: 1-604-633-2744 |