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WTO Approves Suspension of US Copyright in Antigua

Unknown Lamer posted about a year ago | from the wto-only-applies-to-other-people dept.

Piracy 225

hydrofix writes "On Thursday TorrentFreak broke the story (verified by BBC) that the government of Antigua and Barbuda, a tiny island nation on the Caribbean, was planning to launch a legal 'pirate' website selling movies, music and software without paying a penny to U.S. copyright holders. Now, the World Trade Organization has given its final approval for the Antigua government to launch the website. The decision follows from long-running trade dispute between the countries, related to online gambling, which was ruled in Antigua's favor in 2005. After the United States refused to compensate, the WTO granted Antigua the right to 'suspend' U.S. copyrights for up to $21 million annually." From the article: "The Antiguan government further reiterated today that the term 'piracy' doesn’t apply in this situation, as they are fully authorized to suspend U.S. copyrights. It is a legal remedy that was approved by all WTO members, including the United States."

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225 comments

They Cannot Get Something of any Value? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42724803)

What the hell? They had an opportunity to ask for something valuable and instead asked for all the crap put out by Hollywood? Why not just ask for a few beads on a string?

Re:They Cannot Get Something of any Value? (1)

BeeRockxs (782462) | about a year ago | (#42724839)

Hollywood? Note that it's about movies, music and software. Not just movies.

Re:They Cannot Get Something of any Value? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42724857)

Oh, well in that case this is wonderful. The American music industry produces a much better kind of excrement. (same thing for commerical software...)

Re:They Cannot Get Something of any Value? (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42724959)

Can they violate GPL for American written software?

Re:They Cannot Get Something of any Value? (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42725019)

For products falling fully under US copyright like VirtualBox: sure. Same for GNU projects.
For a lot of other GPL software a large to a majority of the contributors are from Europe and retain their copyright, and those could sue.
I guess we have a wholly new reason to be against mandatory copyright assignment...

Re:They Cannot Get Something of any Value? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42726287)

No one will play this game. The only people looking to violate the GPL for profit are companies that want to resell the code as their own. They will not open the door to the "I bought this in Antigua, so it's mine to distribute as I please" defense due to the ruinous affect this would have when turned back upon them.

So, if you were worried that Windows 9 would be Gnome 3, rest assured, it won't be that good.

Re:They Cannot Get Something of any Value? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42725047)

Yes.

Re:They Cannot Get Something of any Value? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42725001)

Or perhaps you are completely ignorant of what is going on?

Re:They Cannot Get Something of any Value? (3, Informative)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about a year ago | (#42726003)

What the hell? They had an opportunity to ask for something valuable and instead asked for all the crap put out by Hollywood? Why not just ask for a few beads on a string?

It's not a case of asking. They're taking what they are owed because the US is refusing to compensate them.

RIAA maths (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42724807)

A limit of $21 million per year? What's that 3, 3 1/2 songs? Best get in there quick if you want to buy this year!

Re:RIAA maths (1)

TFAFalcon (1839122) | about a year ago | (#42724817)

Well since the companies will charge you the same for a replacement copy as for something new, I guess the value of the copyright itself is about 0. So that's an infinite number of copies.

Re:RIAA maths (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42724825)

If they sell the songs at 1 cent each its a lot more.

Re:RIAA maths (4, Interesting)

Intrepid imaginaut (1970940) | about a year ago | (#42725219)

This could be potentially very exciting in terms of orphaned works and works that are in danger of vanishing. That little nation could become the centre of the world's first truly global data archive.

Re:RIAA maths (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42726145)

Sure, if they're allowed to ignore US copyright forever, but I wouldn't build a long-term business plan based on that assumption.

Re:RIAA maths (1)

MajroMax (112652) | about a year ago | (#42726193)

Speaking seriously, it's unlikely that the math here involves the same kind of statutory damages that arise from copyright violations in the US. Statutory damages are the result of the $500/share/song fees, and those are allowed specifically by law as a penalty. Since this set of copyright-suspensions is fully legal, US law would doubly-not-apply on the matter. At best, this might be calculated based on retail price.

How does this affect copyleft? (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42724823)

The GPL and friends rely on copyright to function correctly. Can I get someone in Antigua to send me a copy of Linux (or whatever) unencumbered by the GPL for me to start a proprietary fork?

Re:How does this affect copyleft? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42724871)

Linux does not only contain US copyrights.

Re:How does this affect copyleft? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42724925)

Sure after you strip it of any code held by non Americans.

Re:How does this affect copyleft? (1)

History's Coming To (1059484) | about a year ago | (#42724927)

You can already start a proprietary fork, you just have to give the open source elements away. OK, yes, you can breach this if you want, but it doesn't stop people getting the open source elements, they're still out there, so you just look like a bit of a dick instead. (Not having a go, just playing along with your proposal)

Re:How does this affect copyleft? (5, Insightful)

Richard_at_work (517087) | about a year ago | (#42724935)

The ruling doesn't suspend everyone's obligations with regard to the copyrights involved, just Antigua's - while the copy sent to you may be unencmbered by a license, that doesn't mean you gain any rights to redistribution.

Re:How does this affect copyleft? (5, Interesting)

Gaygirlie (1657131) | about a year ago | (#42725133)

But alas, what does happen if you give an Antiguan a copy of something, then the person removes original copyright notices and replaces them with his/her own and distributes that copy to you? It's not anymore the original one, the copyright was stripped from it, you are not in the legal position to determine who the copyright really belongs to, and it could even be considered a derivative work -- does the suspension of copyright allow for a loophole that basically strips copyrights from an existing item and assigns a new one?

Re:How does this affect copyleft? (1)

Lehk228 (705449) | about a year ago | (#42726433)

the copyright still exists on the work, the ruling allows antigua to disregard the copyright and distribute the work. whoever recieves it cannot make more copies unless they want to be in violation of copyright law.

Re:How does this affect copyleft? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42726443)

Copyrights are not a physical tag that gets stripped from an item. Copyright is a legal term, and can be suspended for any duration, and to any specific limit if lawmakers agree to it. Suspending copyright on an item has no effect on the future allowed use of that item.

Re:How does this affect copyleft? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42725359)

It also doesn't mean that it suddenly becomes legal to download in the US. It only means that the government of B&A will ignore the copyrights of the US (perhaps respect other countries?) and allow a business to sell at a huge profit....since they don't have to pay for it. As with any other country that has loose laws (like Thailand), if you bring it back to the US, it doesn't become legally owned here. In a sense, downloading from their site will be exactly the same as any other illegal bit torrent. Your ISP may know unless you proxy your connection.

Re:How does this affect copyleft? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42726071)

That may be so, but what if I don't want to redistribute?

If Antigua decides to host a copy of 'Anonymous Coward's Greatest Hits', it would be perfectly legal.

If I then tweet 'hey guys, they're giving away this great album' that's still legal (much as the *AA would like that not to be so).

Another scenario.. Guys in suits turn up at my door and sieze my copy of 'Debbie does Dallas XXIV'. My defence? 'I got it from Antigua, so it's legal.'

Re:How does this affect copyleft? (3, Informative)

serviscope_minor (664417) | about a year ago | (#42725541)

Can I get someone in Antigua to send me a copy of Linux (or whatever) unencumbered by the GPL for me to start a proprietary fork?

Unlikely. Linux has contributions from around the world, and the copyright on those certainly has not been suspended.

Re:How does this affect copyleft? (1)

DrXym (126579) | about a year ago | (#42726027)

Seems like you've just described an easy workaround for US copyright holders - release movies and music with copyright from any other country but the US.

Re:How does this affect copyleft? (1)

jedidiah (1196) | about a year ago | (#42726271)

Given the nature of the modern global conglomerate, this may already be the case. Once you bother to look at the situation, you may find that there are fewer American parent companies to take advantage of here.

Re:How does this affect copyleft? (1)

Alioth (221270) | about a year ago | (#42725631)

Linux isn't American. The WTO didn't rule you could override the copyrights of non-Americans, and at least one major copyright holder is Finnish. At least one other is Welsh.

Re:How does this affect copyleft? (1)

angelbar (1823238) | about a year ago | (#42725943)

The thing its that making a propietary fork does not really help you... there will be on the wild code similar to the one you modify with the same benefits to the user and with MORE coders to advance the GPL ecosystem.

Karma is a.... (5, Insightful)

Sprouticus (1503545) | about a year ago | (#42724827)

This is what happens when you try to strong arm countries and, then, when the ruling goes against you, you ignore it.

B&A is going to make $21 million really fast. The question is who sets the prices....

Re:Karma is a.... (4, Informative)

SJHillman (1966756) | about a year ago | (#42724917)

Note that the summary even mentions the US, as part of the WTO, approved the ruling.

Re:Karma is a.... (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42725581)

Note that the summary even mentions the US, as part of the WTO, approved the ruling.

Wrong. The summary says that the US approved an agreement that allows rulings like this under certain circumstances.

The US no more approved this ruling than the Senator from Arizona approved immigration reform -- which they just did contingent on securing the southern border. In neither case will they ever agree that the agreed-to condition has ever been satisfied.

Re:Karma is a.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42725243)

Nevermind the price. What about resale?

Re:Karma is a.... (1)

loustic (1577303) | about a year ago | (#42726029)

How long before the USA decides to *liberate* Antigua?

Re:How long before the USA decides to __ Antigua? (1)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | about a year ago | (#42726205)

I'll reply to you since you're one of the first Non-AC posters to say this.

I agree they'll let this article sit a week so everyone can make their nice "clickbait ad revenue", then the reply/result will come which will pulverize this whole story into the ground. There is *no way* a cute little country-lette like Antigua can create themselves Napster 3.0. US is gonna pick their figurative dignity up and throw it in a dumpster.

Bully tactics (5, Interesting)

sorensenbill (1931240) | about a year ago | (#42724845)

As a US Citizen I'm glad to see them stand up to our government's bully tactics. I hope they follow through and set an example for other countries currently getting strong armed. I think it's pretty funny they knew where to hit the politicians where it hurts, a gut shot to the copyright lobby. I really hate the way this fuels international perception of Americans, our government may feel this way but I'd say it has more to do with campaign money than actually representing the collective public interest.

Re:Bully tactics (4, Interesting)

DarkOx (621550) | about a year ago | (#42724901)

I think its also a cautionary tale about these world governing bodies and making treaties. Our earliest founders warned us about getting into international entanglements. This is clear example of how these things don't always come out as planned. We might be strong arming China one week, but might have some rulings like these go against our interests another, and it makes us look like real ass hats when we try and argue these international bodies should be abide by one moment and than ignore them the next.

Re:Bully tactics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42724975)

Exactly. I feel like crying for my country when I see us pull double standard BS like this. Eventually we'll figure out we can't be ass hats like this forever and what goes around comes around. But when will we figure this out? After its too late?

Re:Bully tactics (2)

SirGarlon (845873) | about a year ago | (#42725135)

I guess the conventional thinking is to just do what every other country does: advocate a double standard where we don't expect to be held accountable for breaking the agreement, but insist that other countries be held accountable for breaking theirs. It has worked pretty well for the US since WWII. I, for one, expect more integrity from a government formed by the likes of John Adams, George Washington, and Thomas Jefferson. It appears I'm in the minority, and realpolitik is the order of the day.

Re:Bully tactics (1)

Shining Celebi (853093) | about a year ago | (#42726341)

I, for one, expect more integrity from a government formed by the likes of John Adams, George Washington, and Thomas Jefferson. It appears I'm in the minority, and realpolitik is the order of the day.

Hahahaha!

I don't think you know much about Adams, Washington, or Jefferson. Just like the politicians of today, they had lots of pretty speeches promoting freedom, democracy, freedom from foreign entanglements, and everything else good and great, but what they actually did was far, far from that. And man, you think bipartisanship is bad today, you should have seen it back then. Today's political campaigns look like a bunch of hippies singing Kumbaya in comparison.

Bully tactic blowback sucks (4, Insightful)

hduff (570443) | about a year ago | (#42725357)

I think its also a cautionary tale about these world governing bodies and making treaties. Our earliest founders warned us about getting into international entanglements. This is clear example of how these things don't always come out as planned. We might be strong arming China one week, but might have some rulings like these go against our interests another, and it makes us look like real ass hats when we try and argue these international bodies should be abide by one moment and than ignore them the next.

Yeah, it sucks when you must follow rules you agreed to, especially hwne you intended to use thoe rules to strong-arm others.

Re:Bully tactics (2)

squiggleslash (241428) | about a year ago | (#42725371)

Not really. If it wasn't for treaties, Antigua could be doing whatever the hell it liked. No $21M limit or anything else. It could also impose a 100% tariff on imported US goods, as another example, or require people leaving Antigua to go to the US give up any dollar bills they have in their possession.

The treaty results in the US being objectively better off than it would be otherwise. The WTO creates a framework where limits are set as far as tit-for-tat punishments go.

Re:Bully tactics (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42725789)

but might have some rulings like these go against our interests another, and it makes us look like real ass hats when we try and argue these international bodies should be abide by one moment and than ignore them the next

And that's kind of the problem, the US wants to have their cake and eat it too.

They insist on free trade, but then they want to be sure to have an advantage. They want keep their own farm subsidies, but penalize anybody else who does it. They want other countries to open up their markets to US products, but not always the reverse.

So America has a moral objection to gambling, big deal. That doesn't mean that another country should, or that it should be their job to police America citizens.

America has always been inconsistent in how they do things, and mostly to their own advantage.

Want to stop international entanglements? Fine. Stop trying to export your copyright laws, stop trying to be sure your own industries have access everywhere with no reciprocation. Stop doing stupid things like tying aid to promises to not teach contraception. Stop sending Monsato seed as food aid which carries an EULA that you won't save any seeds for next year to grow another crop.

America sticks her nose into everybody else's business, pushes for 'free' trade ... and then tries to be sure that the agreement only goes one way and that they can dictate terms to the countries they sign agreements with.

By all means, don't get entangled -- but don't act like it isn't the US who initiated these in the first place and then refuses to play by their own rules. Just stop being a bunch of self entitled bastards who think the world owes you something.

Wait, What? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42724997)

Given that our government uses many bully tactics, how, exactly, is the US prohibiting US banks from transferring money to organizations doing something that is illegal in the US a "bullying tactic"? If the US had a hegemony on international financy, yeah, but we don't. You want to gamble online, use a canadian bank, or an antiguan bank.

Re:Wait, What? (4, Informative)

guises (2423402) | about a year ago | (#42725131)

You're missing the point, if gambling were illegal in the US then the Antiguan casinos wouldn't have been able to petition the WTO for remedy. A country is allowed to dictate whether an activity is legal within its borders, but it is not allowed to make it legal for its own businesses while excluding a foreign competitor.

If I recall correctly, this was something to do with horse racing in Kentucky (or was that another case?) where the Kentucky state government was attempting to protect gambling revenue by barring online casinos. There was a bit about suspending their domain names as well, a lot of judicial overreach on that one.

Re:Wait, What? (2)

jedidiah (1196) | about a year ago | (#42726441)

Except gambling is illegal in the US.

Or rather, the US is not some sort of Soviet style hegemony.

Saying that gambling is legal in the US is much like saying it's legal in Europe or Africa. People tend to forget that the "States" part of "The United States" actually are distinct political entities.

In some regards they are even more independent than the members of the EU (ironically enough).

If the feds tried to impose upon the States what Bonn wants to impose upon Spain or Greece, there would be another civil war.

That's not even getting into the whole VICE aspect of the situation.

Re:Wait, What? (2)

cpghost (719344) | about a year ago | (#42726017)

You want to gamble online, use a canadian bank, or an antiguan bank.

The point is, that the US has a de facto monopoly on international money transfers, since almost all sites need VISA and MasterCard as payment processors. The US has abused its power by going after e.g. Russian sites trading with European customers, by simply shutting them down at VISA and MasterCard. That's what's wrong with the system: the US has a stranglehold on the international money flow, even between countries that are not doing business with the US.

Sign me up! (1)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about a year ago | (#42724847)

$0.01/year for a subscription to a BitTorrent tracker with seeding from Antiguan servers. Might as well make that $27m go as far as possible.

Let me be the first to say (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42724851)

When is the webshop launching?

crunching the numbers gets an interesting result (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42724853)

21million that comes out to be ~1x a full metallica album

Re:crunching the numbers gets an interesting resul (1)

hydrofix (1253498) | about a year ago | (#42726497)

Actually, the way I understand it, Antigua is allowed to gather profits amounting to 21 million USD from selling copies of American works. They definitely won't be using RIAA's "special math", as used in U.S. anti-filesharing court cases, to calculate the profits, or they would actually need to find someone who would buy a Metallica album for 21 million (when you can get it for maybe one millionth of that price from the record shop). Instead if realized, they would be selling the content at whatever price the public is willing to pay, until they have recovered the 21 million USD (minus running costs for the operation, of course.)

WTO is Full of.... (2, Insightful)

Big Hairy Ian (1155547) | about a year ago | (#42724867)

So basically one business is being unfairly discriminated against by a government being protectionist. So the WTO says ok in that case you can rip off this completely separate business. WTF are they smoking?

Btw I don't like copywright but this is just wrong

Re:WTO is Full of.... (5, Insightful)

Splab (574204) | about a year ago | (#42724929)

No, it's absolutely how it should be.

The U.S wont respect the agreements, then Antigua doesn't have to either. Just like any other trade sanction being used around the world - you go for where it hurts to make the big guy play ball.

Re:WTO is Full of.... (3, Insightful)

DarkOx (621550) | about a year ago | (#42724971)

The WTO is not looking at is a one business though they are looking at as economies. Its not like they have an army to go pacify a nation state that is not following the rules it agreed to abide by. This type of action is the only way they have to apply pressure. It make perfect sense to me; piss off an industry with a powerful domestic lobby and hope they lean on their government to fix the situation and yesterday.

Personally I hope the outcome is that our government does a re-think on being part of the WTO in the first place; that would be the best outcome for us citizens. That naturally is a pipe dream. We should negotiate trade agreements individually on a nation by nation basis (there is only about 400 after all our government is already BIG enough to read everyone e-mail so that should not be an issue). As to places like Antigua doing things like this or China for that matter well we either consider infringement on what we feel is our property a serious enough matter that its an act of war or we don't. I would seriously hope the answer to that is we don't but its a democracy let the people decided not some international body.

Re:WTO is Full of.... (5, Insightful)

Sique (173459) | about a year ago | (#42725041)

We should negotiate trade agreements individually on a nation by nation basis (there is only about 400 after all our government is already BIG enough to read everyone e-mail so that should not be an issue).

You know what then will happen? All the other nations will form a common body for the sake of negotiations with the U.S., and the U.S. will be forced to sign the same treaty with everyone. You get the WTO again, but without the leverage of being a member.

Re:WTO is Full of.... (4, Insightful)

dkf (304284) | about a year ago | (#42725053)

I hope the outcome is that our government does a re-think on being part of the WTO in the first place

Careful for what you wish for; the outcomes might not be what you expect. For example, it would also mean that the rest of the world would feel no need at all to enforce copyrights held under US law, including on a lot of Free Software, or at least not until the negotiation of a whole new set of bipartite treaties.

I wonder whether it would be legal now (if not necessarily moral) for an Antiguan citizen to do derivative works of software where the copyright holder is the FSF and change the license to a different one (e.g., a BSD variant)...

Re:WTO is Full of.... (1)

hduff (570443) | about a year ago | (#42725387)

The WTO is not looking at is a one business though they are looking at as economies. Its not like they have an army to go pacify a nation state that is not following the rules it agreed to abide by.

Cue US military invasion of Antigua in 3 . . . 2 . . .

Exactly (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42725107)

IMHO, the Antiguans should seize US assets, there's a lot of hidden money, a lot of which will be from Casino operators, in Antigua. The Antiguans could have got far closer to the problem then copyright infringement.

As it is, there aren't many US imports they could have taken in compensation.

But they probably don't chase infringement anyway, so I don't see how this actually is anything but a Pyrrhic victory.

Re:Exactly (3, Insightful)

TFAFalcon (1839122) | about a year ago | (#42725271)

But seizing money would chase away future business. This way they can get their money from people that they don't care if they offend.

Re:Exactly (3, Insightful)

nedlohs (1335013) | about a year ago | (#42725315)

Except those casino operators are the very things they want to operate in their country. So seizing assets from them would likely cause more long term harm (by causing casino operators to move somewhere that doesn't have a history for seizing casino assets).

Re:WTO is Full of.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42725161)

So basically one business is being unfairly discriminated against by a government being protectionist. So the WTO says ok in that case you can rip off this completely separate business. WTF are they smoking?

Btw I don't like copywright but this is just wrong

http://www.phim7s.net/

Re:WTO is Full of.... (4, Insightful)

nedlohs (1335013) | about a year ago | (#42725203)

That's how it always works. Restricting it to the same business won't work because usually there isn't a significant "same business".

You put a tariff on importing their televisions, so they put a tariff on importing your wheat.

The WTO was supposed to put a stop to that, but of course the only real enforcement mechanism it has is that very thing. "Hey the rules say you can't do that. Since you won't stop we'll let the other guy do this other thing that is also supposed to be against the rules".

Re:WTO is Full of.... (1)

TFAFalcon (1839122) | about a year ago | (#42725229)

Well the US government discriminated against one business in favor of another. I guess they can now tax the casinos some more and use that money to compensate the copyright holders.

Re:WTO is Full of.... (3, Insightful)

Clsid (564627) | about a year ago | (#42725389)

Well, nobody forces you to sign those agreements. But if you want to get into the game, better play by the rules. So much for all the talk of free trade in the US.

Re:WTO is Full of.... (3, Insightful)

JDG1980 (2438906) | about a year ago | (#42725729)

So basically one business is being unfairly discriminated against by a government being protectionist. So the WTO says ok in that case you can rip off this completely separate business. WTF are they smoking?

This is nothing new. Google "chicken tax" – back in 1963, there was a trade war between the US and various European nations over tariffs they put on imported chicken. In retaliation, the US put a 25% tariff on several unrelated goods – including, most importantly, light trucks. Even though the original issues were resolved long ago, the 25% tariff on fully-assembled light trucks remains, which means that foreign manufacturers usually either build their truck plants inside the US or import the trucks in "complete knock down" form and assemble them in the US.

Anyway, remember that copyright is purely a legal construct – it's not part of customary international law, it's just a deal that the governments agreed to. If there were no treaties in the first place, Antigua would be perfectly within their rights to say that they would not have any copyright or patent laws at all.

This is beautiful! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42724895)

Now, how can I invest in Antigua? Most here try think how this can help freespeech etc. but I think the better question is how can I get richer by in this "grey area".

I think it is time for the US to acknowledge that the era of controlled internet in terms of sharing and modern technology is over.

Domain seizures ahead? (4, Insightful)

BSAtHome (455370) | about a year ago | (#42724921)

Lets see if they use a domain registrar that has US roots/ties and then the DHS will seize the domain name of the site(s).

Re:Domain seizures ahead? (1)

Sprouticus (1503545) | about a year ago | (#42724969)

I honestly believe that if that occurs the US would lose the root DNS servers for good. Which is not a horrible thing IMO.

Re:Domain seizures ahead? (3, Insightful)

DarkOx (621550) | about a year ago | (#42725079)

I don't know that is tough one. Nobody can really force us to give up control of the root zones and the last time it was tried it was pretty unpopular.

I really doubt our government would be inclined to yield control over an incident like this. For lots of technical reasons you could not very will mix root servers in your hints; if those root servers have a different idea of truth. You would get instability and chaos.

If some international group or other country stand up its own root servers you will have chaos as well. Which DNS do you use? What domain registrations are valid where. What happens when I try to mail someone in another country does it go to the person I am expecting or someone else who happens to have the same domain on my DNS?

We'd have to go back to bang paths.

Re:Domain seizures ahead? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42725491)

Actually that is exacly what can happen, lets say there is international treaty for new root servers and EU and China and most countries in between chooses to require ISP:s to use the international version by law, there is nothing US could do about it. Yes, it could make a split that makes majority of worlds population internet different than US internet from dns point of view. As for domain registrations, the new domains registered in US root servers would be valid only on US, and new domains on rest of the world root servers would be valid for rest of the world.

Re:Domain seizures ahead? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42725267)

It has already happened ,many times.
They have even coerced other nations
to delete DNS records for sites they dont like.

China blocks unwanted content from their country.
US blocks unwanted content from Everyone.

Re:Domain seizures ahead? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42725015)

Please, the US isn't going to be that stupid.

Antigua is going to be hit by a Hurricane, and then another, and then another, till it's washed off the face of the Earth.

Is it legal to buy? (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42724943)

Whilst it may be legal for them to sell $21million worth of copyright content, is it legal to import that content, be it via download or otherwise?

This is the whole grey market import thing ...

As to "what makes up $21million", that depends on their sticker prices, not court payments.

They're allowed to sell $21million worth of material, so at $20/movie (for example), that's 1,000,000 movies.
Or at $2/song, that's ~10,000,000 iTunes tracks.

Presumably the MPAA/RIAA could garner up a few people and spend $21million "overnight", sacrificing 1 day of sales to mean that the other 364 days of the year would not be free of copyright. But that's tin foil hat stuff and requires that the long term gain be more than the short term loss and for the *AA to recognise that.

Re:Is it legal to buy? (4, Interesting)

Sarten-X (1102295) | about a year ago | (#42725103)

Import legality won't really be a big issue, because Antigua would be able to determine the import laws. The United States could limit exports, but the United States has already agreed to this plan on the WTO side, and the US has enough enemies that may be willing to act as intermediaries. For the paltry sum of $21 million/year, I doubt anyone will really be able to effectively stop this.

However, note that the $21 million isn't necessarily sales, but rather copyright license fees (or at least that's what I suspect, because none of TFAs are clear on the matter). If the normal fee to the MPAA/RIAA were ten cents per item, Antigua could sell 210 million copies annually. That's a pretty reasonable amount, and does exactly what it's supposed to do: boost Antigua's economy at the United States' expense.

Re:Is it legal to buy? (1)

hduff (570443) | about a year ago | (#42725447)

Presumably the MPAA/RIAA could garner up a few people and spend $21million "overnight", sacrificing 1 day of sales to mean that the other 364 days of the year would not be free of copyright. But that's tin foil hat stuff and requires that the long term gain be more than the short term loss and for the *AA to recognise that.

Or the MPAA/RIAA could just make a phone call, arrange for a wire transfer and be done with it without elaborate and expensive subterfuge. In the bigger picture, $21 million is insignificant.

Well (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42724991)

It's not about money, it's about sending a message.

$21 million annually (1)

OzPeter (195038) | about a year ago | (#42725045)

Is that calculated on the basis of MPAA dollars or some currency that is worth something? Like Australian dollars?

how long before other countries do? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42725083)

How long before other countries do this who have been stepped on by US interests, like US using DNS to shut down web sites in countries where they have no jurisdiction? Those countries might also argue they should be able to ignore US copyrights in retaliation.

How will our economy survive? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42725089)

$21 million? That's nearly 10 CDs!

Re:dupe (2)

Amorymeltzer (1213818) | about a year ago | (#42725741)

Not really, no. The old article [torrentfreak.com] was from the 24th, stating that this was probably going to happen, and the new one [torrentfreak.com] is from the 28th, stating that yes, this is actually going to happen as the WTO has approved it. There's a big difference between a small country saying they will take US copyrights at whim and the WTO saying they are allowed to.

good luck with this (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42725205)

But if you do buy something from them, be sure not to use it in the USA. or try to activate your software with the OEM.
Basically you can expect the rest of the world to treat you as a copyright infringer, regardless of what the Antiquan government or the WTO says. Not worth the trouble.

Now introducing... (1)

Clsid (564627) | about a year ago | (#42725427)

Antigua Web Proxy

Enjoy all the benefits of living life like a pirate in a small Caribbean island without all the tradeoffs. Use our free proxy to surf anonymously online, hide your IP address, secure your internet connection, hide your internet history, and protect your online identity.

Go PRO! for more beneficial features, including ...

        Several IP's for multiple downloads
        Improved security and encryption
        Anonymously encrypt all traffic
        Works with all applications
        Easy to use software

The USA (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42725455)

I'm in America, can we suspend copyright here? That would be nice.

Re:The USA (1)

Abstrackt (609015) | about a year ago | (#42725597)

Unfortunately they misheard "suspend copyright" as "suspsend common sense" and thought it was a great idea.

Lets be honest (2)

Grizzley9 (1407005) | about a year ago | (#42725619)

What everyones real question is, can I download Hollywood stuff legally from Antigua servers. I don't bittorrent any shows or movies but if it was cheap enough I'd do this (if it was legal).

US approved the suspension? (1)

flimflammer (956759) | about a year ago | (#42725733)

Curiously, do we have a case of our arms fighting against our feet here? Seems if we are going to be anal about the first thing that started this whole mess, we'd also be anal about our punishment and fight it kicking and screaming.

Re:US approved the suspension? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42725953)

The US didn't approve the ruling, it approved the WTO rules which allow suspension of copyrights as a remedy.

just wait... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42725831)

Soon enough Antigua will start "harbouring" and "assisting" terrorists or some equally bad folk and military pressure will be the only option; rinse and repeat

What Antigua SHOULD DO (1)

PortHaven (242123) | about a year ago | (#42726185)

They are limited to $21 million dollars. So what they should do is offer EVERY song and movie for streaming. And for a pretty basic annual fee (say $100/year or less). But in order to purchase the streaming agreement, you must come to Antigua to subscribe. No online sale..

So the idea is to increase tourism. Come to our little island, have a vacation, and get the world's cheapest streaming service. But only available for purchase IN Antigua.

Software activation keys (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42726229)

I assume they can ignore US copyrights when selling software. But would they be allowed to sell activation keys? I seem to recall Micro$oft having problems with people managing to generate keys for some of their products.

Would they have to include the disclaimer that these software products are unsupported? If not, could fraud charges ensue? Or, if they made up activation keys, could criminal charges then follow?

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