bricko writes "While it didn't get nearly as much attention as other parts of SOPA, one section in the bill that greatly concerned us was the massive expansion of the diplomatic corp.'s "IP attaches." If you're unfamiliar with the program, basically IP attaches are "diplomats" (and I use the term loosely) who go around the globe pushing a copyright maximalist position on pretty much every other country. Their role is not to support more effective or more reasonable IP policy. It is solely to increase expansion, and basically act as Hollywood's personal thugs pressuring other countries to do the will of the major studios and labels. The role is literally defined as pushing for "aggressive support for enforcement action" throughout the world. A few years ago, we detailed how, at a meeting of these attaches, they bitched and complained about how copyright "activists" were making their lives difficult and were a "threat" who needed to be dealt with.
In other words, these people are not neutral. They do not have the best interests of the public or the country in mind. Their job is solely to push the copyright maximalist views of the legacy entertainment industry around the globe, and position it as the will of the US government.
It was good that this was defeated as a part of SOPA... but now comes the news that Lamar Smith is introducing a new bill that not only brings back this part, but appears to expand it and make it an even bigger deal. Politico has a short blurb:
SMITH, OTHERS UNVEIL IP BILL — House Judiciary Committee chief Lamar Smith and other members are unveiling today their new Intellectual Property Attache Act, which realigns the Commerce Department a bit. The measure as proposed would move the current attache program housed with the USPTO to the full agency, complete with an assistant secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property. The proposal is slated for full committee markup on Tuesday. Named as supporters on the measure are a number of panel Dems and Republicans: Reps. Bob Goodlatte, Mel Watt, Darrell Issa, Howard Berman, Howard Coble, Steve Chabot, Jason Chaffetz and Adam Schiff"
Link to Original Source