Functions of the ACTA
- Create a Unified Alliance
- Provide Legal Framework
- Combat Copyright Infringement
- Protect Property
- Provide Continued Resource
The functions of ACTA, or the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement are many. Many in the general public are relatively unaware of ACTA, but regardless, its wide-reaching influence affects almost all of us. Let’s discuss more of what ACTA is as well as its chief functions.
The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement was a trade treaty eventually agreed to and signed into law by a total of nine countries in addition to the European Union. In layman’s terms, this relatively new treaty aimed to inhibit the trade and commerce of contraband, illegal, imitation goods, and other items that violate copyright and intellectual property laws. In signing onto this treaty, the participating countries essentially form a pact, agreeing to not accept or facilitate the commerce of these kinds of goods.
Proceedings for the creation of the treaty took place largely in Japan with a number of countries intimately involved. This began in 2006 and slowly resulted in the refined version of the ACTA we have today. The latest joining parties, Mexico and the European Union signed on in 2012.
Having now covered the basics of ACTA and its history, we shift our focus to some of the specific, main goals of the treaty. As this important treaty evolved, so did its accompanying functions. In the most recent years, the following have come to be defined as ACTA’s, five chief functions.
Create a Unified Alliance
The first and possibly most important function of ACTA is its effective creation of an alliance. The alliance of the countries devoted to its cause is the first and maybe most important step in correcting global counterfeiting concerns. Once allied together for the common cause, these countries are bound by the treaty and its clear provisions on the trade and commerce of counterfeited property, intellectual and real. A team has been formed.
Provide Legal Framework
Second to unification and alliance for the common cause, the treaty’s next-most important function is that of the provision of a legal framework on the issue. This legal framework defines all areas of legality and legal procedure when it comes to suspected counterfeit goods and operations. Without such a clarified set of legal directions, the alliance may be rendered ineffective in cooperatively applying legal action to such situations.
Combat Copyright Infringement
Copyright infringement is an urgent problem in the world today. As markets grow and competition amasses more and more by the day, the temptation for some to employ already copyrighted practices and designs without proper permissions can become too much to ward off. As such, it is fairly common that companies and individuals attempt to skirt copyright protections and make a buck. Combating these infringements is without a doubt, a primary goal and focus of the ACTA treaty.
Real property is often stolen or infringed upon when the above-mentioned copyright violations take place, or someone is actively creating impostor goods to look like those of an official company. Intellectual property is often taken in the same ways, fooling the consumer into thinking that concepts, designs, and even internet-based operations are those of a completely different origin than what is actually reality. Subsequently, protecting real and intellectual property is a chief concern of ACTA.
Provide Continued Resource
The final function of ACTA is that of providing continued support and resources to the treaty’s participants as well as offering guidance to others interested in joining. ACTA is headed by a central committee that is in charge of all ACTA affairs. This committee is bound to act as this continued resource for the greater group. Examples of resources provided by the committee can include guidance on enforcement issues, further legal interpretations of treaty stipulations, assistance in membership changes, and more.
ACTA was designed to create a global force in countering the illegal industries concerned with infringement, theft, and counterfeit goods and services. Since its original inception, it has only continued to gain members determined to stop such operations. For more on the functions of ACTA and its regular operations, it is highly recommended that you visit the website for the Office of the United States Trade Representative.