Oct 262015
 

un 400pxFarida Shaheed, United Nations Special Rapporteur in the field of cultural rights, presented her report on patents and access to culture to the General Assembly. The report’s summary is below, and the full report is available here.

Summary: In the report, the Special Rapporteur addresses the implications of patent policy for the human right to science and culture. She reaffirms the distinction to be made between intellectual property rights and human rights, emphasizing that the right to the protection of the moral and material interests of authors does not necessarily coincide with the prevailing approach to intellectual property law. There is no human right to patent protection. The right to protection of moral and material interests cannot be used to defend patent laws that inadequately respect the right to participate in cultural life, to enjoy the benefits of scientific progress and its applications, to scientific freedoms and he right to food and health and the rights of indigenous peoples and local communities. Continue reading »

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Patents and Human Rights: The Paradox Reexamined

 Posted by on September 3, 2015  Comments Off on Patents and Human Rights: The Paradox Reexamined
Sep 032015
 

dreyfussAuthor: Rochelle Cooper Dreyfuss

Abstract: The Special Rapporteur in the field of cultural rights is tackling the difficult task of reconciling the provision in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights recognizing that “Everyone has the right to the protection of the moral and material interests resulting from any scientific, literary or artistic production of which he is the author” with the right “to participate in the cultural life of the community, to enjoy the arts and to share in scientific advancement and its benefits.” Continue reading »

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Potential Human Rights Impact of the Trans Pacific Partnership

 Posted by on July 27, 2015  Comments Off on Potential Human Rights Impact of the Trans Pacific Partnership
Jul 272015
 
Image:  EFF (CC-BY)

Image: EFF (CC-BY)

This post contains a brief summary of, and excerpt from, a report published by the Third World Network. Click here for the full report.  (eds.)

This document summarises some of the ways in which the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) can harm human rights. The analysis below only examines the impact on recommendations and comments by United Nations (UN) Special Procedures mandate-holders[1] and other United Nations human rights bodies,a so there are other human rights which are likely to be adversely affected by the TPP which are not covered here. Continue reading »

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Apr 252015
 

art19ARTICLE 19 has welcomed the annual report of Farida Shaheed, the Special Rapporteur in the field of cultural rights, presented to the 28th Session of the Human Rights Council in March 2015. The Special Rapporteur’s final report subjects copyright laws and policies to a thorough human rights analysis, referencing “the Right to Share” Principles, developed by ARTICLE 19 and a group of international experts.

The report draws on Article 27 of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights and Article 15(1) of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), which protect both authorship and cultural participation, and questions the assumption that strong copyright enforcement is synonymous with advancing either of these interests.

Click here for the full blog on article19.org.

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Global Library and Archives Community Welcomes New Report from United Nations Special Rapporteur on Copyright Policy and the Right to Science and Culture

 Posted by on March 18, 2015  Comments Off on Global Library and Archives Community Welcomes New Report from United Nations Special Rapporteur on Copyright Policy and the Right to Science and Culture
Mar 182015
 

ifla-logo[Joint statement by 15 civil society groups, Link, (CC-BY)] On Wednesday, 11th March 2015, the UN Special Rapporteur in the field of Cultural Rights presents a report to the 28th session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva regarding copyright policy in the context of cultural rights. The international library and archive community welcomes the report that examines copyright from a critical but often neglected perspective: the human dimension.

Click here for the full statement (PDF).

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Mar 132015
 

eifl[Theresa Hackett, EIFL, Link (CC-BY)]  On 11 March 2015, the United Nations Special Rapporteur in the field of cultural rights presented her report ‘Copyright Policy and the Right to Science and Culture’ at the 28th session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva. The thematic report examines copyright law and policy from the standpoint of the right to science and culture, recognized in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (Article 27) and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (Article 15), as well as in regional human rights conventions and national constitutions.

To assist the research of the Special Rapporteur, Farida Shaheed, EIFL participated in June 2014 in a rather lively expert meeting with other stakeholders at the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in Geneva. EIFL welcomes the final report that brings discussion on copyright issues to the wider UN community, explores important social and human dimensions that often get overlooked in more technical debates, and provides an opportunity to discuss, and help resolve, tensions between copyright and the right to access knowledge. Continue reading »

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UN Agencies’ Report on Pacific Trade & Human Rights: Excerpt on State Obligations on IPR, with Focus on Vanuatu

 Posted by on November 12, 2014  Comments Off on UN Agencies’ Report on Pacific Trade & Human Rights: Excerpt on State Obligations on IPR, with Focus on Vanuatu
Nov 122014
 

un trade and human rights coverThe following is an excerpt from  Pacific Trade & Human Rights, a joint report by the World Health Organization, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, and the UN Development Programme.  The lead authors are Lloyd Lipsett, Miranda Forsyth, Selim Raihan, and Wesley Morgan.

Click here for the full report.

This case study on Vanuatu highlights the human rights dimension of the connection between trade agreements, intellectual property rights (IPR) and traditional knowledge (TK) in Pacific Island Countries. IPR are linked to the enjoyment of a range of economic, social and cultural rights, the rights to health, education, and food in particular. [91] However, it is often very challenging to get a comprehensive understanding of the exact nature of the relationship between IPR and human rights in a particular country or region, as local contexts have a profound effect on their inter-relationship. Continue reading »

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Implementing IP Provisions in Human Rights Instruments: Towards a New Social Contract for the Protection of Intangibles

 Posted by on July 2, 2014  Comments Off on Implementing IP Provisions in Human Rights Instruments: Towards a New Social Contract for the Protection of Intangibles
Jul 022014
 

geigerAbstract:  Despite the crucial importance of ensuring a just balance of interests within intellectual property law, a well ‘thought-out’ IP clause is still lacking in an overwhelming majority of human rights instruments. Building upon the results of an empirical study of about 200 national constitutions and several leading international and European treaties on human rights, this chapter examines how the constitutional framework is guiding the understanding and shape of IP law. In particular, it examines different model provisions for IP included in human rights instruments and puts them in the context of selected judicial practice, general principles of legal interpretation and ‘quasi-constitutional’ rules of IP protection. Continue reading »

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New Booklet – Human Rights and Privatised Law Enforcement

 Posted by on March 4, 2014  Comments Off on New Booklet – Human Rights and Privatised Law Enforcement
Mar 042014
 

edriJoe McNamee
European Digital Rights

Our latest booklet is now online!   The document looks at the extent to which “voluntary” law enforcement measures by online companies are serving to undermine long-established fundamental rights principles and much of the democratic value of the internet.

Unquestionably, the successful campaigns against SOPA and ACTA demonstrate the democratic potential of the internet. Sharing of information over social media, online blackout protests, etc., all generated a synergy which led to big demonstrations against the measures and their rejection or abandonment. But what happened then? Continue reading »

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Make copyright compatible with the UN International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights

 Posted by on January 27, 2014  Comments Off on Make copyright compatible with the UN International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
Jan 272014
 

ffii[Ante Wessells, FFII, Link (CC-BY-SA)]  I just made a personal submission to the Public Consultation on the review of the EU copyright rules.

I used the You can fix copyright website. Very handy, thanks!

I added an attachment, see below or pdf, in which I argue that copyright law has to be made compatible with the UN International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR). Continue reading »

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A Human Rights Approach to Intellectual Property and Access to Medicines

 Posted by on September 12, 2013  Comments Off on A Human Rights Approach to Intellectual Property and Access to Medicines
Sep 122013
 
Photo: Fillmore (CC-BY)

Photo: Fillmore (CC-BY)

Global Health Justice Partnership Policy Paper 1
Yale Law School and Yale School of Public Health 

[Hannah Brennan, Rebecca Distler, Miriam Hinman, Alix Rogers (CC-BY)]

In this paper, we address whether and how human rights norms and frameworks can be used to improve access to medicines (A2M) by reducing the barriers that intellectual property (IP) laws create to such access. We evaluate the feasibility and usefulness of four human rights based strategies that our contacts in the A2M community suggested might be particularly productive: Continue reading »

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Sep 022013
 

vnVietnam’s controversial new “Decree 72 on the Management, Provision and Use of Internet Services and Online Information” went into effect on September 1.  The full text in Vietnamese is here.*

As reported in VOA by Marianne Brown,”Critics say the new rules are aimed at stifling speech online and could discourage businesses from operating in Vietnam. But the government says the measures are aimed at protecting intellectual property and fighting plagiarism.”  Continue reading »

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