Apr 252015

art19ARTICLE 19 has welcomed the annual report of Farida Shaheed, the Special Rapporteur in the field of cultural rights, presented to the 28th Session of the Human Rights Council in March 2015. The Special Rapporteur’s final report subjects copyright laws and policies to a thorough human rights analysis, referencing “the Right to Share” Principles, developed by ARTICLE 19 and a group of international experts.

The report draws on Article 27 of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights and Article 15(1) of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), which protect both authorship and cultural participation, and questions the assumption that strong copyright enforcement is synonymous with advancing either of these interests.

Click here for the full blog on article19.org.

Apr 242015

WCL logo white on blueThe table linked below compares the full text of Title XXII of the Trade Act of 2002, ( the last Trade Promotion Authority law, which expired in 2007); the Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities Act of 2014; and the Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act of 2015. It includes the text of each, and highlights areas where they differ.

This table is an update of an earlier 2-column table by Terence P. Stewart of the Law Offices of Stewart and Stewart.  PIJIP Fellow Alexandra Resh updated it with the new information.

PIJIP Table comparing TPA Legislation from 2002, 2014, 2015.

Apr 232015

sean at podiumThis presentation is in the IP room. But my message is for the IP team to be talking to the ISDS folks next door. The reason is that there is an increasingly urgent need revise the EU and US ISDS templates to protect IP policy decisions from the ISDS chapters of trade agreements. Both the US and EU have been tinkering with their models of late. But both revised models fail to ensure a key domestic sovereignty protection that has been the core of international IP law for 130 years – the exclusive use of state-to-state dispute resolution for enforcement of international IP commitments. Continue reading »

Apr 232015

openmediaCanada Is Walking Into a Copyright Trap Warn Advocates

Content creators and everyday Canadians will pay the price for continued mishandling of copyright policy from government, as unaddressed Notice and Notice loophole continues to expose Canadians to abuse  

[OpenMedia Press Release, Link, (CC-BY-NC-SA)]  Canadians got an unpleasant surprise in the budget yesterday when the government announced that it would be extending copyright for sound recordings by 20 years, up from Canada’s current term of life of the creator plus 50 years. The move comes after the flawed implementation of Canada’s Notice and Notice system, which has left Canadians exposed to abusive and misleading copyright notices from foreign media giants. Continue reading »

Apr 222015

isp-logoBrianna van Kan, Ben Picozzi, and Rebecca Wexler
Yale Media Freedom and Information Access Clinic

On April 3, 2015, Intellectual Property Watch (IP-Watch) completed its written arguments to the federal district court in Manhattan in a case that could compel the United States Trade Representative (USTR) to release basic information regarding USTR’s negotiations over the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement. In particular, IP-Watch’s lawsuit and summary judgment motion asks U.S. District Judge Edgardo Ramos to order USTR to release documents that relate to the intellectual property provisions of the TPP—including USTR’s final negotiating positions, the portions of the draft agreement that the U.S. has proposed or adopted, and communications between USTR and the industry representatives who sit on Industry Trade Advisory Committees (ITACs). Both IP-Watch and USTR have filed opposing summary judgment motions and are now waiting for Judge Ramos to rule on the case. Continue reading »

Apr 222015

margaret-qianAuthors: Margaret Kyle and Yi Qian

Abstract: We examine the effect of pharmaceutical patent protection on the speed of drug launch, price, and quantity in 60 countries from 2000-2013. The World Trade Organization required its member countries to implement a minimum level of patent protection within a specified time period as part of the TRIPS Agreement. Continue reading »

Apr 212015

sean - 150x150[Cross posted from the American Constitutional Society blog, Link] The Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) bill that was released last week contains a fascinating Section 8 on “Sovereignty.”  The section appears intended to make all trade agreements with the U.S. not binding to the extent that they contradict any provision of U.S. law, current or future.  If valid, the section would go a long way to calming fears in this country that new trade agreements, like the old ones, could be used by corporations or other countries to force the U.S. to alter domestic regulations.  (See, for example, analysis on how the leaked TPP text could enable challenges to intellectual property limitations and exceptions like the U.S. fair use doctrine). Continue reading »

Apr 202015

bkBelow is the introduction of an article written with Hannah Brennan and published April 10 by the Harvard Human Rights Journal. The full article is here

On October 16, 2014, a new draft of the intellectual property chapter of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) was leaked. The TPP is a free trade agreement currently being negotiated in secret between the governments of Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, United States, and Vietnam. The intellectual property chapter released in October contains a plant-related intellectual property provision proposed by the United States and Japan that could pose a serious threat to food security within the lower-income parties to the TPP. Continue reading »

Apr 172015

justin hughesAuthor: Justin Hughes

Abstract: The manuscript explores how U.S. fair use – a “standard” in a world of statutory copyright rules – has become an arena of ideological struggle over IP policy. At the international level, this debate frequently plays out in terms of how 17 U.S.C. 107 complies with or fails the “three-step test” of Berne and TRIPS. This manuscript reasons that asking whether section 107 complies with the three-step test is asking the wrong question: section 107 structure is not an exception – it is a mechanism to establish particular exceptions. Continue reading »

Apr 162015

OCTOBER 11, 2010 - Law professor David Levine. (Photo by Kim Walker)The New York Times reported this afternoon that a Congressional agreement has been reached on so-called “fast track” authority for the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP). This international agreement, having been negotiated under extreme secrecy by 12 countries including the United States, Australia, Canada, Japan, Malaysia and Singapore, is supposed to be an “ambitious, next-generation, Asia-Pacific trade agreement that reflects U.S. economic priorities and values.” Indeed, if it comes into effect, it will be the largest such agreement in history, covering some 800 million people. Unfortunately, its chances of meeting that laudable goal have been severely diminished by the aforementioned secrecy. Continue reading »

Apr 162015
Photo by C.E. Kent (CC-BY)

Photo by C.E. Kent (CC-BY)

Trade Promotion Authority legislation was introduced in the House and Senate today.  The full text is available here.

Trade Promotion Authority lets Congress set trade negotiating objectives for the executive branch, and in return, the legislature agrees that it will not amend any deal reached by trade negotiators.  As Public Citizen notes in its press release, this “circumvent[s] ordinary congressional review, amendment and debate procedures” in order to rush the final acceptance legislation. Continue reading »

Apr 162015

cis india[Reposted from CIS-India blog, Link (CC-BY)] In earlier blog posts, we have discussed the development of India’s National IPR Policy (“the Policy”); comments by the Centre for Internet and Society (“CIS”) to the IPR Think Tank before the release of the first draft of the Policy and CIS’ comments to the IPR Think Tank in response to the first draft of the Policy. Continuing our National IPR Policy Series, this article documents our requests to the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (“DIPP” / “the Department”) under the Right to Information (“RTI”) Act, 2005 and the responses of the Department. Continue reading »