The Anti Counterfeiting Trade Agreement has been officially rejected by Members of European Parliament. Despite the fact that the treaty had been negotiated for years between MPs from several countries, including: many EU nations, USA, Australia, Canada, Japan, Korea and many others, ultimately only 39 MEPs supported the vote. There were 146 abstentions, a total of 478 people voted against it.
This was somewhat an expected result, as earlier this week, all five parliamentary committees reviewing ACTA voted for its rejection, urging other MEPs to do the same when the final vote came.
Loz Kaye, the leader of the Pirate Party UK has been speaking about the result, echoing the thoughts of many an internet citizen. "I'm pleased the MEPs have listened to the millions of people who contacted them and came out on the streets to protest against ACTA, instead of being misled by the empty promises of industry lobbyists," he said in a statement.
"This must signal a start for a new way of doing politics. No more should international agreements be negotiated behind closed doors and simply rubber stamped by parliaments. Policy must become something that happens with the people, not to the people."
While ACTA isn't completely dead in the water, it isn't far from it. It cannot be implemented in the EU at all now, though to ratify it elsewhere, six of the eight remaining countries would have to agree to it. After the EU's conclusive rejection, a worldwide one will likely follow.