PIJIP Events/Webcasts on Four Upcoming Supreme Court IP Cases

In PIJIP’s ongoing Supreme Court Series, a panel of counsel for amici and parties discusses the IP cases on the afternoon following oral argument before the Court. The events are open to the public and webcast live and on demand.  We will host four of these events over the next two weeks (starting today at 4:15 EST).

Standardisation in the Area of Innovation and Technological Development, Notably in the Field of Text and Data Mining

[EC Expert Group. Ian Hargreaves, Chair] Text and data mining (TDM) is an important technique for analysing and extracting new insights and knowledge from the exponentially increasing store of digital data (‘Big Data’). It is important to understand the extent to which the EU’s current legal framework encourages or obstructs this new form of research and to assess the scale of the economic issues at stake… When it comes to the deployment of TDM, there are worrying signs that European researchers may be falling behind, especially with regard to researchers in the United States. Researchers in Europe believe that this results, at least in part, from the nature of Europe’s laws with regard to copyright, database protection and, perhaps increasingly, data privacy.  Click here for more.

A Discussion That Could Finally Change Copyright in Peru

[Miguel Morachimo] During October 2013, an investigative report managed to inform the public on how copyright is designed and enforced in Peru. Its revelations have prompted congressional hearings, a state decision to suspend the directors of a collecting society, the first designation, after ten years, of a new director for the Office of Copyright and up to thirteen bills that aim to modify the most controversial parts of the law. Does this represent a real change for copyright in Peru or is it just a temporary phenomenon? Click here for more.

Music Industry: Still Profitable After All These Years

[Jonathan Band and Jonathan Gerafi] In March 2014, the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) announced that global industry revenues declined 3.9 percent in 2013. IFPI claims that “digital piracy is the biggest single threat to the development of the licensed music sector and to investment in artists.” Notwithstanding these dire pronouncements, the record labels remain profitable and the music industry as a whole is thriving. Click here for more.

The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement: Implications for Access to Medicines and Public Health

[Kajal Bhardwaj and Cecilia Oh] In recent years, the number of bilateral and regional trade negotiations has been increasing. Many of these negotiations involve both developed and developing countries, and the ensuing free trade agreements often contain extensive provisions on the protection of intellectual property rights. These provisions usually impose a higher level of protection for intellectual property rights than is required under the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights, or TRIPS Agreement. These so-called “TRIPS-plus” provisions delay generic market entry and competition. As such, they run counter to UNITAID’s efforts to increase the affordability of, and access to, medicines and other medical products. Click here for more.

Peruvian Civil Society Organizations Demand that Government Issue a Compulsory License for Atazanavir

[Javier Llamoza and Ana Romero] Atazanavir is an antiretroviral, second-line medicine that is used to treat people living with HIV.   In Peru, this drug is patented by Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS), ensuring exclusivity and a high price for the same in the national market.  A related result of this situation is that Peru’s public health sector overspends approximately US$ 7.5 million annually, as the present patent on Atazanavir does not allow for the purchase of the generic product.   In contrast, the generic version of this medicine is available in Bolivia, for example, and costs that country US$ 0.50 per 300mg tablet, while in  Peru, an average of  US$ 12.85 is paid for the original brand name (Reyataz tab 300mg ),  24 times more for the same product. Click here for more.

Law Professors File Brief in U.S. Supreme Court: International Law Supports Aereo

[Sean Flynn] 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. Click here for more.

Problems of the Patent System Are Home-Made: Experts Published a Declaration According to 20 Years TRIPS Agreement

[Max-Planck Gesellschaft] Patent law is omnipresent in the business news of today. One record number of patents issued follows the next. At the same time, the public consciousness is occupied by ‘patent wars’ between Smartphone manufacturers, massive demonstrations against the perceived greed of pharmaceutical companies or the patenting of tomatoes, animals and even parts of the human body. At the time of its introduction, the patent system was not without controversy either. However, is it now at the brink of collapse? What are the problematic issues – are they to be found in international law? 40 patent law experts from 25 countries under the auspices of the Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition deliver answers. In the ‘Declaration on Patent Protection’, published in connection with the 20th anniversary of the WTO, they demonstrate the manner in which the international legal order leaves ample space for differing designs of national patent systems and how this flexibility promotes economic growth and social welfare. Click here for the full declaration.

Report from India: Relicensing books under CC

[Subhashish Panigrahi] … While negotiating with authors for relicensing their books in Creative Commons license, I started identifying certain motivation areas for any author for such free content donation. Some of the a uthors, publishers, and copyright holders have started learning about open access to scholarly publications. However, the readers who are likely to buy a hard copy of a book are likely to buy it even when a free, virtual version is available – that’s the idea authors who are skeptical about CC licenses need to understand.  Click here for the blog on planet.creativecommons.org.

Determinants and Welfare Implications of Unlawful File Sharing: A Scoping Review

[Steven James Watson, Daniel John Zizzo and Piers Fleming] Using systematic reviewing techniques drawn from the medical sciences, a team of behavioural economists and psychologists from the University of East Anglia has undertaken a scoping review of all evidence published between 2003-2013 into the welfare implications and determinants of unlawful file sharing. Articles on unlawful file sharing for digital media including music, film, television, videogames, software and books, were methodically searched; non-academic literature was sought from key stakeholders and research centres. 54,441 sources were initially found with a wide search and were narrowed down to 206 articles which examined human behavior, intentions or attitudes. Click here for more.