Statement of Michael Carroll on the White House Open Access Policy Directive
[PIJIP press release] Today, PIJIP Director and PLoS Board Member Michael Carroll commended the Obama Administration for issuing an historic policy Directive that opens up access to the crucial results of publicly funded research by directing all federal agencies with annual research and development budgets of $100 million or more to provide the public with free and unlimited online access to the results that research: “Today, the Obama Administration’s Office of Science and Technology Policy adopted a pro-Internet, pro-science, pro-innovation policy that requires research articles reporting the results of federally funded research to be made available over the Internet. Importantly, the policy also addresses research data and directs that these data should be made public to the greatest extent feasible. Agencies should embrace these opportunities to increase the value and impact of the research they fund with vigor and creativity.” Click here for more.
Monthly Report on Copyright Reform in Poland
[Alek Tarkowski] The Ministry of Culture and National Heritage has decided to set up the Copyright Forum – a platform for discussion on issues in area of copyright law and especially its reform. The representatives of communities of authors, creative industries, commercial users, chambers of commerce and NGOs dealing with issues of copyright are invited to participate in meetings. Following topics will be initially addressed: orphan works and works out-of-commerce, financing public domain, full implementation of Directive 2006/115/EC on public lending right, the scope of criminal liability in field of copyright and related rights and licensing in digital single market. Click here for more.
The Enforcement Provisions of the Philippines’ IP Code Amendments Do Not Have Safeguards in Cases of Abuse
[Elpidio V. Peria ] … The IP Code amendments give powers to the Director General and the Deputies Director General of Intellectual Property Office (IPO) to undertake enforcement functions with the support of the PNP, NBI, Bureau of Customs, Optical Media Board and the local government units, among others. In addition, these same people will now be able to conduct visits during reasonable hours to establishments and businesses engaging in activities violating intellectual property rights and provisions of this act based on report, information or complaint received by the Intellectual Property Office… this enforcement function makes the IPO officials both judge and executioner of the cases involving violations of IPRs and this is what makes it problematic. Click here for more.
São Paulo State Governor Vetoes Open Educational Resources Bill
[Carolina Rossini, Priscila Gonsales and Debora Sebriam.] We are sorry communicate that the São Paulo governor Geraldo Alckmin (PSDB) vetoed in its entirety the PL 989/2011, because of a perceived conflict of powers between the Executive and the Legislative branches in the State of São Paulo. PL 989/2011 – which was approved by all committees of the São Paulo Legislative Chamber (ALESP) back in December 2012, aimed to establish the public policy for open educational resources in the richest state of Brazil. This Bill was among a remarkable 90% of all bills that were approved by the Legislature in Sao Paulo state, but rejected by the governor. The bill will now return to the Legislative Chamber where the veto might be overturned – but that is an improbable event. Click here for more.
USTR Holds Public Hearings for the 2013 Special 301 Report
[Mike Palmedo] On February 20, the Interagency Special 301 Committee chaired by the US Trade Representative held a public hearing as part of its annual review of foreign countries that “deny adequate and effective protection of intellectual property rights” or that “deny fair and equitable market access” to American companies that rely on intellectual property protection. The Committee will produce the 2013 Special 301 Report based on input from this hearing, written comments received earlier this month, and other less transparent consultations with governments and industry.
- Notes on government testimony
- Notes on business and civil society testimony
- Sean Flynn’s blog based on his testimony
WIPO Blind Treaty Text Shapes Up On Last Day; More Drafting In April
[Catherine Saez] A week of arduous negotiations and doubts at the World Intellectual Property Organization about progress on a text to become a treaty for the benefit of visually impaired people was concluded positively yesterday with a sigh of relief by most delegations, and observers. A new text was issued and even though most deemed that crucial issues were addressed, some are outstanding and delegates will meet again in April to continue their drafting efforts. Click here for the full story on IP Watch.
Early Lessons from the New Zealand Copyright Tribunal
[Susan Chalmers] The local copyright enforcement arm for the “Big Three” record labels (Sony, Universal and Warner) has won two cases at the Copyright Tribunal. One account holder was a Telecom customer, the other with TelstraClear, and now they owe the Big Three $616.57 and $557.17, respectively. Both were caught illegally uploading songs. The specific “wrong” here according to the Copyright Act is that only the copyright owner can “communicate the work to the public”. The law appears to presume that when your BitTorrent client allows other P2P users to download from you, then you are communicating that work to the public, even though that “public” could in fact be one person. Click here for more
Agenda of the 7th Global Congress Against Counterfeiting and Piracy
The Seventh Annual Global Congress Against Counterfeiting and Piracy, Chaired by the World Customs Organization, hosted by the Turkish government, and sponsored by Interpol, WIPO, the International Trademark Association, and the International Chamber of Commerce’s Business Action to Stop Counterfeiting and Piracy, will be held this April in Istanbul. The organizers have sent the agenda: available here.