Fourteenth Round of TPP Negotiations Underway in Leesburg, Virginia

Negotiators meeting in Leesburg, VA this week heard presentations from civil society and gave a public briefing on September 9.  Copyright, trademarks and GIs are reported to on the agenda for the IP chapter.  Documents and other sources related to this week’s negotiations include:

Civil Society:


Colombian Copyright Office Seeks Comments on Limitations and Exceptions to Copyright for the Visually Impaired

[by Carolina Botero] In an unprecedented action the Colombian Copyright Office opened a consultation process for citizen participation on the instrument for limitations and exceptions to copyright for the visually impaired that is currently in discussions at WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights. The Colombian’s Copyright Office’s mechanism is not perfect. It uses a form that seems to allow foreign comments, but asks for “cedula” (which is the citizen identification number in Colombia).  Click here for more.

Executive Branch Seeks Quick Passage of Copyright Legislation in Panama

Copyright legislation has been introduced in Panama in order to bring the country into compliance with the terms of  its trade agreement with the United States.  Bill no. 510 “On Author’s Rights and Neighboring Rights” (Sobre Derechos e Autor y Derchos Conexos) was introduced to the Congress on August 23. The Executive has asked for it to be ratified by October.   The legislation lengthens the term of copyright protection from 50 to 70 years after the life of the author. It seems to expand the definition of “reproduction” to include temporary copies. It amends the criminal penalties section of the earlier law. Click here for more.

Australian Digital Alliance: Potential $600M annual economic boost from copyright reform

[Announcement by Ellen Broad]   Today the Australian Digital Alliance published important economic research which found that flexible and technology neutral copyright laws will, over time, add $600 million in annual productivity gains to the Australian economy. These findings are contained in two reports prepared for the Australian Digital Alliance by Lateral Economics, titled “Exceptional Industries” and “Excepting the Future.” The reports calculate for the first time the value of the copyright ‘exceptions’ sector – that is, those industries who rely on copyright exceptions to deliver goods and services – and value it at $182 billion per annum, or 14% of Australia’s GDP. The ‘copyright exceptions sector’ includes education and research institutions, libraries and cultural institutions, digital, internet and web hosting providers as well as producers of copyright enabling devices such as mp3 players. Click here for more.

California Legislature Unanimously Passes Legislation to Create Open Access College TextbookS

The California legislature has unanimously passed two bills sponsored by Senate President pro Tempore Darrell Steinberg aimed at developing free textbooks for students the state university system. Students should eventually be able to access the books online at no cost, or pay $20 for a hard copy. The first bill, SB 1052, creates the California Open Education Resources Council to guide the development of textbooks for 50 core college courses.  The second bill, SB 1053, creates the California Digital Open Source Library where the free texts will be housed. Click here for more.