MSF Response on RCEP Negotiations in the Philippines

 Posted by on May 8, 2017  Comments Off on MSF Response on RCEP Negotiations in the Philippines
May 082017

[Médecins Sans Frontières press release] The Philippines is set to host the 18th round of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) trade agreement’s negotiations in Manila this week. Negotiators from the ten members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and six further countries – India, China, Japan, Australia, New Zealand and South Korea –will meet to hammer out this multilateral trade deal that covers nearly half of the global population.

Japan and South Korea are pushing for measures that go beyond what is required by the World Trade Organization’s Agreement on Trade-related Aspects of Intellectual Property (TRIPS), called ‘TRIPS-plus.’  This would mean extending drug corporations’ patent terms and entrenching new monopolies in the national drug regulatory system (‘data exclusivity’) in countries like India,  leading to a delay in generic competition, which translates into high drug prices for people across the world. Further, the proposed investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) provision in the leaked draft investment chapter and its intersection with other proposals on IP could potentially undermine governments’ capacity to implement and execute policies to protect public health and ensure universal healthcare, of which access to life-saving medicines is an essential component. Continue reading »


Louisiana State University Files Suit Against Elsevier; Elsevier Has Not Accepted Service

 Posted by on May 2, 2017  Comments Off on Louisiana State University Files Suit Against Elsevier; Elsevier Has Not Accepted Service
May 022017

Krista Cox, Association of Research Libraries, Link (CC-BY)

On February 27, 2017, Louisiana State University (LSU) filed a lawsuit against international science publisher Elsevier after the publisher breached its contract and refused to allow LSU’s veterinarian school faculty and students to access Elsevier content licensed by LSU’s Libraries. ARL’s press release is available here. Continue reading »


Creative Commons’ 2017 State of the Commons

 Posted by on May 2, 2017  Comments Off on Creative Commons’ 2017 State of the Commons
May 022017

[Creative Commons, Link (CC-BY)] SOTC explores the wide array of creativity and knowledge that is freely available to the world under CC licenses. Throughout the report, we’ll show how the body of work in the commons has grown and developed this year, and explore the impact the commons is making on our culture.

In previous editions of SOTC, we’ve focused our efforts on measuring and reporting quantitative data—for instance, the total number of openly-licensed works online, the percentage of CC licenses used across various fields, and the volume of CC-licensed works that are available to the public through the many online sharing platforms where our legal tools are prevalent. That data is still here, but this year we’ve gone further: CC’s new organizational strategy is focused on increasing the vibrancy and usability of the commons (not just its breadth and volume), so we’re focusing on the stories and people behind the creativity in the commons as well.

Full report at

Mar 172017

On March 29, PIJIP will team up with the American University International Law Review  and a number of other organizations to host a one-day conference: Globalizing Fair Use: Exploring the Diffusion of General, Open and Flexible Exceptions in Copyright Law.

9:00 – 3:30: An academic symposium co-hosted by PIJIP and the American University International Law Review will exploring new directions in domestic and international copyright law promoting adoption of general copyright exceptions that are open and flexible. Click here for the symposium agenda. Continue reading »

Feb 062017

The Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property, the Australian Digital Alliance and Internet NZ are hosting a series of meetings and workshops on user rights in copyright reform in Australia and New Zealand February 13-24. Participants in the events include  Michael Geist, Bill Patry, Sang Jo Jong, Kimberlee Weatherall, Rebecca Giblin, Suzy Frankel, Jessica Coates, Heesob Nam, Peter Jaszi, Patricia Aufderheide, Sean Flynn and Meredith Jacob.

Public events on the tour include: Continue reading »


US Trade Associations Write Congressional Leadership on IP in India, Suggest WTO Dispute Settlement As a Negotiating Tool

 Posted by on February 6, 2017  Comments Off on US Trade Associations Write Congressional Leadership on IP in India, Suggest WTO Dispute Settlement As a Negotiating Tool
Feb 062017

Twenty trade associations have written the House and Senate leadership urging Congressional engagement on the trade relationship between the U.S. and India. Their letter identifies intellectual property protection as an “ongoing challenge.” It highlights diplomatic structures where the countries have discussed IP and other issues, then notes that “WTO dispute settlement has played and should continue to play a key role in ensuring that India follows through on its international commitments.” Continue reading »

Jan 212017

[Reposted from the Association of Research Libraries, Link (CC-BY)] In December 2016, strong endorsements of fair use appeared in somewhat unexpected places.

First, the Joint Strategic Plan (“JSP”) released by the Office of the Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator on December 12, 2016, stated that nothing in the JSP:

should be interpreted as limiting the scope of exceptions and limitations, such as fair use, under U.S. copyright law. To the contrary, the basic principles that have permitted the Internet to thrive must be safeguarded, and the Strategic Plan expressly recognizes and celebrates advancements in technology. The way people use and access content – which has led to new and innovative uses of media (e.g., remixes and mashups involving music, video and the visual arts), and fair use, for example – will undoubtedly continue to evolve. We must work to foster creativity, understanding the role of exceptions and limitations as not only part of our body of laws, but as an important part of our culture. Indeed, it is the combination of strong copyright rights with a balance between the protection of rights and exceptions and limitations that encourages creativity, promotes innovation, and ensures our freedom of speech and creative expression are respected. Continue reading »


Unknowingly Linking to Infringing Content Is Still Infringement, Court Rules

 Posted by on December 12, 2016  Comments Off on Unknowingly Linking to Infringing Content Is Still Infringement, Court Rules
Dec 122016

Andy, TorrentFreak, Link (CC-BY-NC)

A court in Germany has held the operator of a commercial website liable after it unknowingly linked to infringing content hosted elsewhere. The Hamburg Regional Court found that the link to a Creative Commons image, posted to another site without the correct attribution, amounted to a copyright infringement. Continue reading »


Australia Should Reject U.S. Push for Even Longer TPP Medicine Monopolies

 Posted by on November 6, 2016  Comments Off on Australia Should Reject U.S. Push for Even Longer TPP Medicine Monopolies
Nov 062016

aftinettextlogo_0[AFTINet Press Release, Link] “The Australian government should reject the push from US Republican Congress members to increase biologic medicine monopolies by seven years, even more than the extra three years which has already been agreed in the TPP text,” Dr Patricia Ranald, Convener of the Australian Fair Trade and Investment Network said today. Continue reading »


EU Member States Should Push To Improve Commission’s Disappointing Copyright Proposal

 Posted by on November 3, 2016  Comments Off on EU Member States Should Push To Improve Commission’s Disappointing Copyright Proposal
Nov 032016

fix-copyright[Timothy Vollmer, Creative Commons, Link (CC-BY)] Last month the European Commission released its proposed changes to copyright in the EU. Unfortunately, the proposal fails to deliver on the promise for a modern copyright law in Europe. In an ideal world, the Directive would have provided for progressive policy changes to serve the goals of a unified digital marketplace across Europe. It would have jumpstarted economic activity, championed innovative digital technologies and services, and protected consumers and access to information. It would have expanded opportunities for European businesses, cultural heritage institutions, educators, and the research community. Continue reading »


USPTO Hosts Unbalanced Global Intellectual Property Academy Copyright Seminar

 Posted by on October 25, 2016  Comments Off on USPTO Hosts Unbalanced Global Intellectual Property Academy Copyright Seminar
Oct 252016

krista cox[Cross posted from ARL Policy Notes, Link] Several weeks ago, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) hosted a copyright seminar at its Global Intellectual Property Academy for two dozen intellectual property officials primarily from countries in Latin America, Asia, and Africa. While the first several days involved an “overview” of copyright and mostly time with United States government officials, September 22 was labeled “Industry Day.” The speaker list revealed a very heavy focus on rightholders, in several cases the panels did not have any voices advocating for the importance of consumers and the role of limitations and exceptions in copyright law. Continue reading »

Sep 152016

flags-br-and-arJoint statement by Fundación Grupo Efecto Positivo and the ABIA Grupo de Trabalho sobre Propriedade Intelectual 

Buenos Aires, Rio de Janeiro, September 15th, 2016 – The United Nation’s High Level Panel (UN HLP) on Access to Medicines released yesterday its final report. The Panel was mandated in November 2015 by UN’s Secretary-General Mr. Ban-Ki Moon to find solutions for the “incoherence” between human rights and public health and rules on intellectual property that hinders innovation and access to medicines. Although the recommendations of the report could have been stronger, it clearly recommends the use of pro public health safeguards to promote the human right to health. The report describes some of the challenges faced by countries to make use of those safeguards, however it fails on addressing the responsibility of pharmaceutical companies. Continue reading »