The Guardian claims that the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (Acta) is about to be ratified by G8 governments. The world’s eight largest economies—wasn’t it always the seven biggest economies plus Russia?—are meeting in Japan (and eating like princes!) to discuss Really Important Things. Among those is Acta, which would give customs agents, all reliably trained and educated, no doubt, the right to sift through your laptop and other digital goodies in search of pirated content.
Most of the opinions I’ve read or heard said the measure is more targeted at giant, James Bond-like international piracy rings and not snot-nosed kids with a couple of illegally download U2 songs on their iPod. Of course, at what point would said customs agent consider someone a “big enough” pirate to take further action? Lord knows I, and I imagine many of you, have thousands of songs on our hard drives that we’ve acquired over the years.
When and if Acta passes, we’ll mention it and freak out with the rest of you.