Thanks Stephen,

I agree with others that this is a good idea for the Wikimedia
Foundation to sign it.

Individuals and other organisations can also sign it following
instructions here:

The tweet announcing it is here

On Fri, Dec 6, 2013 at 5:56 AM, Stephen LaPorte <> wrote:
> Hello advocacy advisers,
> Current drafts of the Trans Pacific Partnership[0], a new trade treaty
> currently being negotiated, contains language that would require countries
> that sign the treaty to extend the length of the minimum copyright term to
> life of the author plus 70 years. Global treaties currently require only
> life + 50 years, so the TPP would represent a widespread extension of
> copyright terms by 20 years, and make it hard to roll back the copyright
> term in countries that already have life + 70.
> The letter below[1], addressed to the TPP negotiators, directly addresses
> this issue. We’re considering signing, because the letter is specifically
> targeted at an issue (copyright term) that is core to our encyclopedic
> mission, and affects (at present) 14 different countries.
> Does the advisory group have any thoughts about joining the letter? We would
> like to let KEI know if we will join the letter before December 7, 2013.
> [0] ;
> (We briefly mentioned TPP in the Wikilegal fact sheet on ACTA in January
> 2012. If anyone is interested in updating that document, feel free to get in
> touch! See:
> [1]
> --
> The letter was prepared by Knowledge Ecology International, and will be
> joined by like-minded organizations including the Open Knowledge Foundation,
> Electronic Frontier Foundation, and Free Software Foundation.
> Full copy of the letter:
> Dear TPP negotiators,
> In a December 7-10 meeting in Singapore you will be asked to endorse a
> binding obligation to grant copyright protection for 70 years after the
> death of an author. We urge you to reject the life+ 70 year term for
> copyright.
> There is no benefit to society of extending copyright beyond the 50 years
> mandated by the WTO. While some TPP countries, like the USA, Mexico, Peru,
> Chile or Australia, already have life+ 70 (or longer) copyright terms, there
> is growing recognition that such terms were a mistake, and should be
> shortened, or modified by requiring formalities for the extended periods.
> The primary harm from the life+ 70 copyright term is the loss of access to
> countless books, newspapers, pamphlets, photographs, films, sound recordings
> and other works that are “owned” but largely not commercialized, forgotten,
> and lost. The extended terms are also costly to consumers and performers,
> while benefiting persons and corporate owners that had nothing to do with
> the creation of the work.
> Life+70 is a mistake, and it will be an embarrassment to enshrine this
> mistake into the largest regional trade agreement ever negotiated.
> --
> Stephen LaPorte
> Legal Counsel
> Wikimedia Foundation
> This message might have confidential or legally privileged information in
> it. If you have received this message by accident, please delete it and let
> us know about the mistake. For legal reasons, I may only serve as an
> attorney for the Wikimedia Foundation. This means I may not give legal
> advice to or serve as a lawyer for community members, volunteers, or staff
> members in their personal capacity.
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John Vandenberg

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