[La Quadrature du Net, Link, (CC-BY-SA)] Just as the Julia Reda report (GREEN/EFA – DE MEP) on copyright reform was being discussed this week in the European Parliament Committee on Legal Affairs (JURI), another report was examined today by the Committee on Culture and Education (CULT). The latter concerns the reinforcement of the “Intellectual Property” rights, and contains a number of disturbing points regarding repression and enforcement that bring back to mind highly contested provisions from the ACTA agreement, and encourages an extra-legislative approach to fighting “commercial scale counterfeiting”.
[Yale Global Health Partnership press release] Just last week, worldwide leaders came together in Geneva, Switzerland at the World Health Organization to begin to develop a five-year strategy to combat Hepatitis C. The disease, which affects 185 million people worldwide – five times as many people as HIV, predominantly in low-and middle-income countries – has been called a silent epidemic. Now, a new report by Yale’s Global Health Partnership (GHJP), the Treatment Action Group (TAG) and the Initiative for Medicines, Access and Knowledge (I-MAK) warns that global efforts to extend treatment to millions is in peril unless key obstacles to access are confronted immediately… strategies used with other diseases, particularly HIV/AIDS, to extend treatments to millions who need it has largely depended on getting less expensive, generic versions of these drugs on the market, by pressuring companies to allow other manufacturers to produce their drugs.
Urs Gasser and Wolfgang Schulz
Berkman Center Research Publication No. 2015-5
February 2015 | Full Text (SSRN)
A review of online intermediary governance frameworks and issues in Brazil, the European Union, India, South Korea, the United States, Thailand, Turkey, and Vietnam creates a picture full of nuance, whether looking at the genesis of intermediary frameworks, the reasons for intervention, or the specifics of the respective governance models, including strategies, institutions, modalities, and the effects of regulation, among other dimensions. The country case studies both highlight and illustrate the importance of cultural and political context, which is not only reflected in the respective legal norms aimed at regulating intermediaries, but also expressed through different views and perceptions regarding the social function of intermediaries. In some sense, the case studies and the way in which the authors tell the story themselves mirror the same context and diversity. Similarly, the importance of the socioeconomic context has become clearly visible. Many of the features of various intermediary governance models can hardly be understood without considering their economic context, in conjunction with demographic characteristics and shifts.
LDCs Members have submitted a duly motivated request for an unconditional extension of the 2002-2016 pharmaceutical transition period (covering patents and data) and for relief from the requirements of TRIPS Article 70.8 and 70.9 (mailbox and marketing exclusivity provisions). This expert analysis confirm LDCs’ need and entitlement to the requested extension.
Report by Ethan Senack for the Student PIRGs
Full report here, (CC-BY)
According to the College Board, the average undergraduate student should budget between $1,200 and $1,300 for textbooks and supplies each year. That’s as much as 40% of tuition at a two-year community college and 13% at a four-year public institution.
For many students and families already struggling to afford a college degree, that is simply too much – meaning more debt, working longer hours, or making choices that undermine academic success.
[Reposted from the Medicines Patent Pool, Link, (CC-BY-NC-ND)] The Medicines Patent Pool (MPP) announced a licence today with MSD, known as Merck in the United States and Canada, for paediatric formulations of raltegravir, a key medicine approved for children living with HIV four weeks of age and older. With the new licence, generic manufacturers and other companies based anywhere in the world can develop, manufacture and sell low cost, paediatric versions of raltegravir in countries with the highest burden of disease, where 98 percent of children with HIV in the developing world live.
I am writing to you as part of the International Policy team at the Washington-based digital rights group, Public Knowledge, to alert you to a free and open Spanish-language online course called “Open Internet” (Internet Abierto Y Libre) that we are launching early March 2015. This course may be of interest to you, your students, or grantees as an opportunity to build a deeper understanding of the intersection of human rights and the Internet, and we’d love if you could share this information throughout your networks.
Abstract: Greater investment is required in developing new drugs and vaccines against malaria in order to eradicate malaria. These precious funds must be carefully managed to achieve the greatest impact. We evaluate existing efforts to discover and develop new drugs and vaccines for malaria to determine how best malaria R&D can benefit from an enhanced open source approach and how such a business model may operate. We assess research articles, patents, clinical trials and conducted a smaller survey among malaria researchers. Our results demonstrate that the public and philanthropic sectors are financing and performing the majority of malaria drug/vaccine discovery and development, but are then restricting access through patents, ‘closed’ publications and hidden away physical specimens. This makes little sense since it is also the public and philanthropic sector that purchases the drugs and vaccines.
Mexico’s PRI has introduced legislation, dubbed “Ley SOPITA” by some observers, that aims to “stop or prevent, in the digital environment, the commission infringements of intellectual property rights.” It would give the Mexican Institute of Industrial Property the ability to inspect business, collect data, and make interim orders that aim to stop infringement.
A news story in El Economista quotes the Red Collective in Defense of Digital Rights R3DMX: “The Parliamentary Group of the PRI in the House of Representatives intends … to empower the Mexican Institute of Industrial Property (IMPI ) to order censorship of content, and even entire Internet sites, under the pretext of protecting copyright.” [Google-translated quote]
Summary: Intellectual property (IP) protections proposed by the United States for the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) have sparked widespread alarm about the potential negative impact on access to affordable medicines. The most recently leaked draft of the IP chapter shows some shifts in the US position, presumably in response to ongoing resistance from other countries. While some problematic provisions identified in earlier drafts have been removed or mitigated, major concerns remain unresolved.
I’m happy to announce that the website is now live where you can read posts, find great resources, and see the calendar of events. This site will be updated as folks add posts and videos as well as new events. You can visit the site here: http://fairuseweek.org/
Abstract: Wikipedia, the free online encyclopedia, stands as a highly visible success story of an organization that provides a public good, when formal theory implies it should not exist. The modern literature on intellectual property rights places the emphasis on extending the logic of property rights to intangibles, and focuses on a static tradeoff between providing incentives to overcome the free rider problem of providing a public good, and providing too much monopoly power.