[A2k] TiSA: the trade agreement that would prohibit Free Software mandates

Frédéric Couchet fcouchet at april.org
Wed Jun 3 07:27:35 PDT 2015


TiSA: the trade agreement that would prohibit Free Software mandates

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On May 27, 2015 a a new leak of TiSA (Trade in Services Agreement) was
<https://netzpolitik.org/wp-upload/TISA-Annex-on-Electronic-Commerce.pdf>. TiSA
is an international agreement currently negotiated behind closed doors
by 50 countries, including the EU and the US. In this version, an
article explicitly prevents a country to give priority to Free
Software. April denounces this text and asks European governments to
reject those dangerous and opaque negotiations.

The article in question plainly states that no Free Software mandates would be authorized:

    Article 6: [JP propose; CO oppose: Transfer or Access to Source Code

    1. No Party may require the transfer of, or access to, source code
    of software owned by a person of another Party, as a condition of
    providing services related to such software in its territory.

    2. For purposes of this Article, software subject to paragraph 1 is
    limited to mass-market software, and does not include software used
    for critical infrastructure.]

This statement is proposed by Japan and opposed by Colombia, there is no
word on the position of other countries yet. However, it goes against
the recent moves in favor of Free Software in many countries, including
France and Italy. The adoption of such a text would be a dangerous
setback against interoperability, data durability, and independence,
without providing any clear advantage for international trade. April
hence demands this sentence to be removed and asks the question: why has
it been inserted in the first place, and who asked for it?

For more information on the secret agreement TiSA, we invite you to read
the article on EFF's website

All the best,

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