I’m on my way back from the Anti ACTA demo in London, at which I was asked to speak. I was good to see a number of people attend. I bumped into the wonderful Bridget Fox too!
Here’s my speech:
As I was travelling here on the train, I found myself thinking: why am I here?
What has gone so wrong with the political system that politicians pass laws – the DMCA, the DEA, SOPA, PIPA, ACTA. Laws that look attractive on the surface, but are so deeply flawed. Why have they stopped listening?
But, they haven’t stopped listening. They’re falling in to a trap set by big businesses with vested interests. The ones with money to influence policy, the lobbying firms, the corporate hospitality arrangements.
They hear that the economy is bumbling along the bottom. That many businesses are struggling, and these are hard problems to solve. And suddenly a shining beacon is held out – support our creative industries and all will be well. No one is interested in this new fangled Internet thing anyway. Well, apart from the people stood here today!
People like you, and me. People like Julian Huppert – we helped take a motion to the Liberal Democrat Conference to repeal the damaging parts of the Digital Economy Act. The Alliance of Liberals and Democrats in Europe will vote against ACTA, and in three major committees it has already been rejected it.
Something has changed. The people who represent us are starting to hear our stories. How we will not put up with censorship, interference and snooping. And let me tell you this. The big industries are scared. Shady back room negotiations so that they may be able to slip it past the public.
Thanks to you, this won’t work anymore. We have a voice, and it’s here today. It’s not too late to stop damaging our freedoms. Go visit your elected representatives. Tell them why we need to stop these bad laws. Help them understand that it’s not ok to pass these. Write about it, tell people, shout in the streets!
We know ACTA is bad. Let’s tell the world.