30 international intellectual property law professors from around the world filed a brief in the U.S. Supreme Court today in ABC v. Aereo. Aereo is being accused of being directly liable for copyright infringement by supplying equipment for a remote DVR service that allows consumers to record and play back free-to-air television programming. The brief responds to arguments made by IFPI et al and some other amici supporting ABC that international copyright law — including the Berne Convention, WIPO Copyright Treaty and several Free Trade Agreements — control the case. This brief argues that international law is not controlling, but rather leaves countries free to hold that Aereo’s equipment only facilitates private copying by consumers.
[Reposted from Digital Rights LAC, Link, (CC-BY-SA)] At Digital Rights LAC we wanted to ask different specialists in the region about their personal appraisals on digital rights issues. This is the case of Carolina Botero from Colombia. We asked her what the main achievements were regarding the “exceptions and limitations to copyright” and what direction these discussions took in 2013. Here is her reply.
Bearing in mind that Colombia is anticipating a copyright reform, essentially to fulfill the commitments of the FTA with the USA (ie commercial interests of the holders), 2013 was, however, an interesting year for the “positive agenda” that the country’s Karisma Foundation is pushing, which has exceptions at its central axis, which are understood as guarantees of fundamental rights and not as favors for the holders.
[Cross posted from CCUSA, Link (CC-BY)] Much of what we hear about the globalization of copyright law around the world does not favor users. The dominant trend of lengthening terms, increasing criminalization and “deterrent” penalties and expanding third party liability has the intent and effect of privatizing more and more of the public domain. But one trend moves in the opposite the direction – the recent shift toward a global expansion of fair use.
The term “fair use” is often used to refer the specific limitation and exception to copyright contained in the US Copyright Act, 17 U.S.C. § 107. But it has also come to have a broader meaning
Sean Flynn, American University Washington College of Law, 202-274-4157, firstname.lastname@example.org
Margot Kaminski, Yale Law School, email@example.com
David Levine, Elon University School of Law, 336-279-9298, firstname.lastname@example.org
The release of a Trade Promotion Authority bill yesterday, including provisions to increase Congressional oversight of the trade negotiation process, is a welcome sign that Congress may be preparing to increase its oversight over international trade, including trade laws that alter or restrict our domestic intellectual property laws. Unfortunately, the bill does not go far enough to ensure public transparency and participation, and does little to ensure that the products of such negotiations promote the public interest.
Researchers, scholars and policy specialists from over 40 countries drafted and endorsed a declaration of Fundamental Public Interest Principles for International Intellectual Property Negotiations that are starkly at odds with some trade agreement negotiations.
The Principles were adopted at the Third Global Congress on Intellectual Property and the Public Interest which met in Cape Town, South Africa December 7-13, 2013. The principles are strongly critical of the process and presumed substance of the negotiation of intellectual property provisions in the ongoing Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) and US-EU Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP).
Abstract: The first version of the three-step test emerged at the 1967 Stockholm Conference for the Revision of the Berne Convention. With the inclusion of versions of the test in the TRIPS Agreement of April 1994, the two WIPO “Internet” treaties of December 1996, the more recent Beijing Treaty on Audiovisual Performances of June 24, 2012, and the Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, Visually Impaired, or Otherwise Print Disabled (VIP Treaty) of June 27, 2013, the test has taken on the central function of allowing and enabling tailor-made solutions at the national level.
The three rather abstract criteria of the test offer room for different interpretations.
By Luisa Fernanda Guzmán Mejía (CC-BY)
Cross posted from Digital Rights – LAC; Link
After approving the Marrakesh Treaty, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) will resume the Development Agenda. Now is the time for reviewing the needs of libraries and archives, but will there be political will to do so?
Libraries and archives have the mission to collect, preserve and provide access to knowledge and information. Undoubtedly, they are guarantors of fundamental rights such as freedom of expression and access to information. These institutions contribute for improving education, research and employment, and as a source of entertainment; moreover, they promote the flow of ideas and freedom of thought, creativity and innovation. Due to their important role, they are central axis of cultural ecosystem.
[by Jonathan Band and Peter Jaszi] The Marrakesh Treaty, adopted by the World Intellectual Property Organization this past summer, provides Contracting Parties with great flexibility concerning the implementation of its obligations. Article 4(2) sets forth one way a Contracting Party may meet its obligation under Article 4(1) to permit the making and distribution of accessible format copies domestically. Likewise, Article 5(2) sets forth one way a Contracting Party may meet its obligation under Article 5(1) to permit the cross-border exchange of accessible format copies.
Economists and legal experts will join in a public discussion of the social and economic benefits of copyright users’ rights on September 26 from 2pm at American University Washington College of Law. The event will bring together top scholars in economics and law to discuss needs for empirical research on copyright users rights to inform law reform processes around the world. The first panel will review the empirical scholarship on the relationship between copyright limitations and exceptions and social and economic development and discuss new avenues for research that would improve our public understanding of the issue. The second part of the event will feature a roundtable discussion with regional copyright academics about the need for empirical evidence to promote balanced policy-making in regions where copyright reform initiatives are underway. The event will end with a keynote address by Sunil Abraham from the Center for Internet and Society on the relation between intellectual property flexibility and innovation in the telecommunications sector in India.
September 11, The Promise and the Peril of Intellectual Property Licensing for Indigenous Assets.
September 12, The Marrekesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, Visually Impaired, or Otherwise Print Disabled. Links to registration for the free and public events, as well as to webcast information, are included below.
Reposted with author’s permission from the Socio-Legal Newsletter
Concern about access to educational materials has regularly been in the news. Whether it is the ‘cost of knowledge’ campaign focusing on Elsevier’s blanket licence policy or the suicide of Aaron Swartz. Also significant was Harvard University’s announcement that it couldn’t afford the price hike demanded by journal publishers. For that matter, initiatives like those contained in the Finch Report have invited criticism that they divert research monies – already a dwindling resource – as ‘article processing charges’ whilst not dealing with the problem of blanket licences.
These struggles are legion; yet, I want to shift attention to the analogue world of books and photocopied course packs. The case in Delhi High Court has Oxford University Press (OUP), Cambridge University Press and Taylor and Francis litigating Delhi University and Rameshwari Photocopy Services for copyright infringement. Not only is the thought of a university press litigating a university problematic; but, this case comes with a fair dose of colonial-era inequities.
There are a series of meetings at the Creative Commons Global Summit this week on promoting the public interest and protection of the public domain in copyright reform.
PIJIP has been working for two years on research and advocacy promoting the incorporation of open and flexible general limitations and exceptions into copyright reform proposals. Below is a collection of links to related resources for easy access.