European Commission Undecided on Ancillary Copyright for Press Publishers
[Mike Palmedo ] European Commission Vice President Andrus Ansip has responded to Members of the European Parliament who expressed concern with the Commission’s consideration of ancillary copyright for press publishers as part of its upcoming copyright harmonization proposal. The so-called “Google tax,” introduced at the domestic level in different forms in Germany and Spain, allows press publishers to charge fees to search engines that include snippets of news stories in their search results. Vice President Ansip indicated that the Commission is undecided on whether to include the provision. Click here for more.
President Obama Sends Two WIPO Copyright Treaties To US Senate For Ratification
[IP Watch] United States President Barack Obama sent two signed multilateral copyright treaties negotiated at the World Intellectual Property Organization to the US Senate for ratification. The treaties are the 2012 Beijing Treaty on Audiovisual Performances and the 2013 Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, Visually Impaired. The White House sent similar messages to the Senate dated 10 February. The Beijing message is here. Click here for more.
See also: Electronic Information for Libraries. Policymakers in Kyrgyzstan Pledge Support for the Marrakesh Treaty. Link.
CREATe Data and Evidence: Introducing OMeBa
[Theodore Koutmeridis] Online behaviour is changing rapidly due to technological progress. The legal framework, and copyright policy specifically, needs to keep pace with digital innovation and new business models. These changes in consumption of digital goods are also challenging existing theoretical propositions, requiring new academic attention. The use of appropriate data is crucial for the understanding of the perplexing patterns of online behaviour. CREATe acknowledges this need and through various research projects it has explored empirically important aspects of copyright policy. Two recent resources are of particular interest: (i) the Copyright Evidence Wiki, which is available here, focuses on fully categorising all the relevant empirical studies for informed copyright policy interventions and (ii) the Online Media Behaviour analytics (OMeBa) platform, which can be found here, offers easy access to a unique data source related to online behaviour. This blog post introduces OMeBa (more information about the Copyright Evidence Wiki is available here: launch event video and slides). Click here for the full post.
TPP Implementation, and Obama’s 2017 Budget Proposal to Reduce the Period of Biologics Exclusivity in the U.S.
[Mike Palmedo] As readers of this blog are well aware, one of the most controversial issues in the Trans Pacific Partnership was the length of data exclusivity for biologic drugs. The U.S. sought a twelve year period (which would be consistent with current U.S. law) during which competitors would be unable to enter the market to compete with innovator firms unless they duplicated safety and efficacy data to obtain regulatory approval. Other countries sought lesser terms, arguing that long periods of data exclusivity raised the price of biologic medicines by blocking generic competition…. Once again, the [Obama Administration’s annual] Budget calls for seven years of exclusivity. Click here for more.
Lessons for the SADC from the Indian Case of Novartis AG v Union of India
[Lonias Ndlovu] Abstract: …It has been argued by health activists and academics that excessive patenting results in too many patents for minor innovations in medical technology and this in turn leads to higher prices of medicines, thus frustrating SADC citizens’ right to access affordable essential medicines. This paper highlights how the legislative inclusion of World Trade Organisation (WTO) Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) flexibilities around the requirements for patentability can be effectively used to curb incremental patenting and limit the proliferation of evergreen patents. This is achieved through a critical analysis the 2013 Supreme Court of India case of Novartis AG v Union of India before extracting useful lessons for the SADC. The highlighted lessons will in all likelihood inform the current intellectual law reform projects in most SADC members, including South Africa. Click here for the full paper on SSRN.