Cautionary Tales About Collective Rights Organizations
[Jon Band] Collective licensing has been suggested as a possible solution for the obstacle copyright law places in the path of new uses of works enabled by innovative technologies. Collective licensing does have the potential to reduce transaction costs when a large number of works are licensed to a large number of users, thereby benefiting both rights holders and users. However, the actual track record of collective rights organizations (CROs), the entities that manage collective licenses, reveals that they often fail to live up to that potential. Although there are a wide variety of CROs operating under divergent legal frameworks, many unfortunately share the characteristic of serving their own interests at the expense of artists and the public. Click here for more.
Is Panama About to Pass the Worst Copyright Law in History?
[Andrés Guadamuz] In a Rogue’s Gallery of copyright legislation, many efforts deserve mention. The DMCA is surely there, together with Japan’s new copyright law, the Digital Economy Act, and Ley Sinde. But a new Panamanian copyright bill is giving those laws a run for their money… the law gives unprecedented powers to impose harsh administrative fines on infringers on top of possible future civil litigation, and the money obtained goes to the entity and the employees that acts as judge and jury on the imposition of those fines. This is an incentive to hunt down and fine everyone, with an added incentive to find re-offenders, as you double your earnings. Click here for more.
Still Waiting on Obama Administration Response to
[Michael Carroll] Does the Obama Administration believe in the power of the Internet to maximize the value of public investments in scientific research? We will soon find out. Each year, the government spends about $60 billion on basic scientific research. About half of this money goes to the National Institutes of Health, which has an Internet-friendly Public Access Policy that requires all grantees to provide a copy of journal articles and other published results of taxpayer-funded research to be posted online within one year after publication. This policy has bipartisan support and has been an unqualified success. So, why not require the other agencies that fund basic research, like the National Science Foundation, NASA and the Department of Energy, to do the same? Click here for more.
Notes on USTR Hearing on the Entry of Mexico into the TPP Negotiations
[Mike Palmedo] On September 21, USTR hosted an interagency hearing on the entrance of Mexico into the TPP negotiations. Other agencies on the panel were Agriculture, EPA, State, Commerce, Labor, and Treasury. In her opening statement, Barbara Weisel noted that Mexico is the second biggest destination for US exports. She also said that “all nine countries are committed to expanding” the agreement to other countries in the region. Ten witnesses testified, including 3 focused on IPR – James Love from KEI, Eric Schwartz from IIPA, and Jay Taylor PhRMA. Click here for more.
Event: Media Piracy and Culture – A Discussion of Empirical Research
Joe Karaganis, a researcher at Columbia University’s American Assembly, and Bodó Balázs, Budapest University of Technology and Economics and Fellow at Harvard University’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society, will discuss their ongoing research on culture and media piracy in the U.S. and Europe. Karaganis will discuss a recent comparative study, “Copy Culture in the US and Germany,” which maps digital media practices and attitudes toward copyright enforcement in the two countries. Balázs will discuss his ongoing research on the complex system of rules and governance mechanisms in piratical P2P file-sharing “darknets,” including communal enforcement of intellectual property -like regimes within such communities. The event runs from 11:30-1:30 EST and it will be webcast. Click here for more.