Aug 292017

[Originally posted in The Conversation, Link (CC-BY-SA)] . As the new school year approaches, Canadian universities are grappling with the Federal Court of Canada’s recent copyright decision against York University.

The court ruled that York could not rely on its fair dealing policy and per-use licensing to copy works as a part of course packs, but must pay millions of dollars in licensing fees to Access Copyright, which sells blanket copyright licenses to organizations. Continue reading »

Jun 292017

[Reposted from, Link (CC-BY)] The Supreme Court of Canada released its much-anticipated Google v. Equustek decision today, upholding the validity of an injunction requiring Google to remove search results on an international basis.  The 7-2 decision (Justices Côté and Rowe dissented, finding that there were alternatives available, the order is ineffective, and expressing concern that the “temporary” injunction was effectively permanent) is not a surprise – last week’s Facebook’s decision suggested a willingness to side with the weaker Canadian litigant against Internet giants – but the decision will ultimately grant Google more power, not less. Continue reading »


The Web Is At A Crossroads – New Standard Enables Copyright Enforcement Violating Users’ Rights

 Posted by on April 15, 2017  Comments Off on The Web Is At A Crossroads – New Standard Enables Copyright Enforcement Violating Users’ Rights
Apr 152017

[Parminder Jeet Singh, IP Watch, Link (CC-BY-NC-SA)  The World Wide Web today stands at a crossroads, as its standards body, the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), considers the demand of big content providers to provide them with the facility to be able to control user devices for ensuring that their content is not copied. This facility is called the Encrypted Media Extension (EME), which enables these companies to put digital rights management (DRM) into the user’s browser, whether the user wants it or not, and whether such restrictions are as per the user’s local national laws or not. Continue reading »


Policing the Unstable Materialities of Digital-Media Piracy in Brazil

 Posted by on August 26, 2016  Comments Off on Policing the Unstable Materialities of Digital-Media Piracy in Brazil
Aug 262016

DentAmerican Ethnologist, Volume 43, Issue 3, August 2016.
Descrição em Português
| Full Text (English)

Around the world, antipiracy NGOs train police to recognize the unauthorized use of music and films and to publicly destroy illicit CDs and DVDs. For those who enforce laws governing intellectual property (IP), music and film piracy underscores how digital reproduction can be conceived of as forgetful, inconstant, and promiscuous. Continue reading »


UK Bill Introduces 10 Year Prison Sentences for Online Pirates

 Posted by on July 8, 2016  Comments Off on UK Bill Introduces 10 Year Prison Sentences for Online Pirates
Jul 082016

tf[Ernesto for TorrentFreak, Link, (CC-BY-NC)] Last year the UK Government announced a plan to increase the maximum prison sentence for online copyright infringement to ten years. The current maximum of two years is not enough to deter infringers, lawmakers argued. The plan followed a recommendation put forward in a study commissioned by the UK Intellectual Property Office (IPO) a few months earlier. This study concluded that criminal sanctions for online copyright infringement could be increased to bring them into line with related offenses, such as counterfeiting. Continue reading »


Safeguards for Defendant Rights and Interests in International Intellectual Property Enforcement Treaties

 Posted by on June 13, 2016  Comments Off on Safeguards for Defendant Rights and Interests in International Intellectual Property Enforcement Treaties
Jun 132016

weatherallAuthor: Kimberlee G. Weatherall

Abstract: This paper explores how international intellectual property (IP) law protects the rights and interests of defendants in IP enforcement procedures. It offers a mapping and analysis of a range of procedural safeguards and limits to remedies found in the international legal framework governing IP enforcement. Continue reading »


Fan-Created Movie Subtitle Site Operator Facing Prison

 Posted by on May 26, 2016  Comments Off on Fan-Created Movie Subtitle Site Operator Facing Prison
May 262016

tf[Andy, TorrentFreak, Link (CC-BY-NC)] The operator of a site that hosted fan-made translated movie subtitles has been prosecuted in Sweden. was raided by police in the summer of 2013, despite many feeling that the site had done nothing wrong. That is disputed by the prosecutor who says that the crimes committed are worthy of imprisonment. Running a site offering or even linking to pirated movies and TV shows can be a hazardous occupation. It attracts the attention of copyright holders, the police, and in some cases even governments. For those running them these perils represent an occupational hazard.

Continue reading »

Mar 252016

US-EUThe European Union has published its report on the 12th round of Transatlantic Trade and Investment (TTIP) negotiations, held in Brussels Februiary 22-26.  The full document is available here.  The section reporting on the intellectual property negotiation (pp. 15-16) follows:

3.5 Intellectual property rights, including Geographical Indications

Given the efficiency of the respective systems, the EU’s intention in this area of negotiations is not to strive towards harmonisation but to identify issues of common interest where we can address divergences. The latest discussions continued to explore what elements a TTIP IPR chapter could include. Continue reading »


Specialised Intellectual Property Courts – Issues and Challenges

 Posted by on March 24, 2016  Comments Off on Specialised Intellectual Property Courts – Issues and Challenges
Mar 242016

ictsd-160px[CEIPI, ICTSD, Link]  The establishment of the WTO Agreement on TRIPS (Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights) and the proliferation of plurilateral, bilateral and regional agreements have significantly contributed to the increasing complexities of the intellectual property system. The emergence of new actors, reflecting conflicting expectations and the adoption of new trade agreements that often exceed the standards set by the TRIPS agreement, have resulted in a new density of rules that have further fragmented the international system. These developments have unavoidably called for further analysis by academics and stakeholders. Continue reading »

Feb 292016

cbp logo2Last week, President Obama signed the Trade Enforcement and Trade Facilitation Act of 2015 into law. It made news primarily due to the provisions allowing Customs to block entry of goods made by slave labor, but readers of this blog might also be interested in the section on trademark and copyright enforcement. The bill requires customs officers to share information with rightholders upon suspicion that an import is infringing, it allows the seizure of anti-circumvention tools, and it sets up a new IPR “Coordination Center” within Immigration and Customs Enforcement.  There are also coordination, reporting and training requirements. Continue reading »


Sneaky Change to the TPP Drastically Extends Criminal Penalties

 Posted by on February 18, 2016  Comments Off on Sneaky Change to the TPP Drastically Extends Criminal Penalties
Feb 182016

effbig[Posted on, Link (CC-BY)] When the text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) was first released in November last year, it included provisions dictating the kinds of penalties that should be available in cases of copyright infringement. Amongst those provisions, the following footnote allowed countries some flexibility in applying criminal procedures and penalties to cases of willful copyright infringement on a commercial scale: Continue reading »

Feb 022016

butler150pxThe Trans-Pacific Partnership (“TPP”) is a massive new trade agreement recently negotiated between the US and a host of countries including Australia, Japan, Canada, Mexico, Singapore, and Chile. The TPP’s IP Chapter (PDF) includes a series of provisions that address rightsholder abuse. While the agreement’s acknowledgment of abuse is salutary, and the protections it affords to users are real, these provisions rely largely on the discretion of judicial or administrative authorities, making the agreement’s protections for users less certain than protection for rightsholders. Continue reading »