Intellectual Property and the Public Interest
Legal Scholars Release Critical Analysis of U.S. Proposals for Intellectual Property and Pharmaceutical Chapters of the Trans Pacific Partnership
A report released on Dec 6 by legal scholars analyses the U.S. proposals for chapters on intellectual property and pharmaceutical pricing. The scholars’ analysis concludes that the “U.S. proposals, if adopted, would upset the current international framework balancing the minimum standards for exclusive rights for media and technology owners, on the one hand, and the access rights of the public, competitors, innovators and creators on the other.” Click here for more.
Criticisms of U.S. Proposals for IP in the Trans Pacific Partnership Grow as Negotiators Meet in Malaysia
Additional reports and statements on the U.S. proposals for intellectual property were released in advance of last week’s TPP negotiations in Malaysia. Some critics focus on the impact that the U.S. proposals may have on access to generic medicines, while others describe the effect of the IP provisions on access to copyrighted works and the future of the internet. Examples include pieces from U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders, U.N. Special Rapporteur for the Right to Health Anand Grover, the Consumers Association of Malaysia, Public Citizen, Oxfam, and Internet NZ. Click here for more.
Final Draft of Brazilian Copyright Reform Bill Leaked by Forum Magazine
[Blog by Pedro Mizukami]: Renato Rovai, editor of Brazil’s Fórum magazine, has just posted the final draft of the Brazilian copyright reform bill on his blog. This and previous versions of the draft bill have circulated from hand to hand in the past few weeks, reaching a few members of civil society and journalists, but not the public at large. Along with the draft bill itself, Rovai has also published Minister Ana de Hollanda’s message to president Dilma Rousseff containing the rationales for the proposal, and a lengthy technical brief prepared by the Ministry of Culture’s Intellectual Rights Directorship. Click here for more.
OPEN Act Available for Comment Online; Opponents of SOPA Continue to Warn Against Unintended Consequences
Rep. Darrell Issa has posted the text of the Online Protection & Enforcement of Digital Trade Act (the OPEN Act) at http://keepthewebopen.com/ – a site that allows people to comment on the text. The legislation is meant to offer an alternative to the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), and would allow the International Trade Commission to investigate foreign websites and issue cease and desist orders on those that are primarily and willfully used to infringe intellectual property rights. Meanwhile, controversy over SOPA continues: The Hill published a story quoting Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt warning that SOPA and PIPA would “criminalize linking and the fundamental structure of the Internet itself.” The Internet Commerce Association sent a letter to Rep. Lamar Smith, warning that “SOPA may have an unintended but nonetheless devastating impact upon domain name registrars and other intermediary companies that participate in the domain name industry.” Leslie Harris, President of the Center for Democracy and Technology, wrote an op-ed for ABC News describing how SOPA and PIPA could lead to “major collateral damage to Internet innovation, online free expression, the inner workings of Internet security, and user privacy.” Click here for more.
UNESCO Introduces Global Open Access Portal
The UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) recently announced the creation of a portal that “presents a current snapshot of the status of Open Access (OA) to scientific information around the world. For countries that have been more successful implementing Open Access, the portal highlights critical success factors and aspects of the enabling environment. For countries and regions that are still in the early stages of Open Access development, the portal identifies key players, potential barriers and opportunities. The Global Open Access Portal is designed to provide the necessary information for policy-makers to learn about the global OA environment and to view their country’s status, and understand where and why Open Access has been most successful.” Click here for more.
Events and Deadlines
- Dec 14 – House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Trade hearing on the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement.
- Dec 16 – KEI side event at the 8th WTO Ministerial Conference: The TRIPS Agreement and Copyright
- Dec 16-17 – ICTSD Trade and Development Symposium
- Jan 13 – Deadline for submitting comments to USTR on Japan, Mexico and Canada joining the Trans Pacific Partnership