Copyright Law Rises Concerns in Mexico

Some organizations such as R3D consider that the Law would impose digital censorship, by using the "notification and withdrawal" mechanism.

In Mexico, legislative reforms related to digital rights has raised concerns. The Chamber of Deputies gave the green light to the reforms to the Federal Copyright Law and the Federal Criminal Code to adapt Mexican legislation to the intellectual property chapter of the T-MEC with a total of 369 votes. Associations that protect human rights are worried about the changes and some Mexican media have explained why.

Ten years of prison if you hack your cellphone

Some organizations such as R3D consider that the Law would impose digital censorship, by using the “notification and withdrawal” mechanism, which is nothing more than the action that would force Internet providers to eliminate publications or content from their users, without even consulting them, when someone makes a complaint that they are violating their copyright.

The reform initiative of this law includes penalties of up to 10 years in prison for evading “technological protection measures” or “digital locks” imposed by manufacturers or developers of hardware and software to prevent access to or copying of the information contained in equipment and systems and prevent infringements of their copyrights.

All devices and operating systems have their respective digital locks, which prevent potential violations of copyright, such as recording a movie in a cinema and stop the exercise of rights, as well as the development of activities that help the public interest in aspects of the environment, cybersecurity, health, economy, among others.

For example, security researchers need to break digital locks to detect vulnerabilities in virtual protection to maintain the privacy of millions of people.

Patients, researchers, and physicians need to bypass these digital locks to experiment, manufacture, improve, or repair healthcare devices such as pacemakers or mechanical respirators.

USMCA is behind of the Copyright law

USMCA is the renegotiation of the free trade agreement between the United States, Canada, and Mexico; originally known as the ‘NAFTA’ or ‘NAFTA’, and entered into force on July 1, 2020. It is now called the United States, Mexico, and Canada Agreement.

It is related to this law because the same treaty seeks to strengthen the protection of copyrights and combat piracy. For this reason, Mexico had to adapt its legislation.

Associations against the Copyright Law

In addition to R3D, other associations such as Creative Commons Mexico, SocialTIC, Article 19, Wikimedia Mexico, and Networks for Diversity, Equity, and Sustainability have joined the fight to stop these reforms applied to the Federal Copyright Law.