Libraries Applaud Landmark Copyright Ruling Affirming Fair Use

[Library Copyright Alliance] [Library Copyright Alliance Press Release, Link] The Library Copyright Alliance is extremely pleased with today’s decision by the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in Authors Guild v. HathiTrust, finding in favor of fair use. The Library Copyright Alliance filed an amicus brief (PDF) in the case, supporting HathiTrust’s position and the lower court’s finding of fair use. Jonathan Band, counsel for the Library Copyright Alliance, said, “The decision is a significant victory for the public.” Click here for more.

Canada – South Korea Trade Agreement Demonstrates Deals Possible Without Increasing IP Protections

[Michael Geist] Canada and South Korea announced agreement on a comprehensive trade agreement earlier today. The focus is understandably on tariff issues, but the agreement also contains a full chapter on intellectual property (note that the governments have only released summaries of the agreement, not the full text, which is still being drafted). The IP chapter is significant for what it does not include. Unlike many other trade deals – particularly those involving the U.S., European Union, and Australia – the Canada-South Korea deal is content to leave domestic intellectual property rules largely untouched. The approach is to reaffirm the importance of intellectual property and ensure that both countries meet their international obligations, but not to use trade agreements as a backdoor mechanism to increase IP protections. Click here for more.

Hong Kong Government to Introduce Copyright (Amendment) Bill 2014

[HKSAR Press Release]  The Government will introduce the Copyright (Amendment) Bill 2014 into the Legislative Council (LegCo) on June 18 to update Hong Kong’s copyright regime and ensure that it keeps pace with technological and overseas developments. The Bill also provides a number of copyright exceptions to facilitate reasonable uses of copyright works. Click here for more.

Text: Copyright Amendments Bill 2014.

Increasing Access to HIV Treatment in Middle-Income Countries: Key Data on Prices, Regulatory Status, Tariffs and the Intellectual Property Situation

[World Health Organization] This paper provides information on the prices paid by 20 middle-income countries for adult and pediatric formulations of antiretroviral treatments recommended by WHO. It links this information with an analysis of the intellectual property situation of the selected medicines taking into account existing license agreements as well as compulsory licenses, and includes data and general information on a number of other determinants of prices and availability of ARVs, including tariffs, mark ups and taxes, as well as the regulatory status. Click here for more.

TRIPS Council Debates Non-Violations, Innovation, Green Tech Transfer

[Caterine Saez] Whether countries can bring intellectual property complaints against each other under the World Trade Organization even if they don’t violate WTO rules was a topic of debate this week, but could not be resolved. The WTO Council for Trade-Related Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) met on 11 June. The meeting ended after only one day. A proposal on the ability to bring so-called non-violation complaints under the TRIPS agreement was raised by the United States and discussed inconclusively. Another item put forward by the United States and Taiwan on “innovation hubs” for small-and-medium-sized enterprises led to many countries sharing their experiences, while discussions on the relationship between IP and technology transfer on green technology are expected to be pursued at the next meeting.  Click here for the full story on IP Watch.

Do University Patents Pay Off? Evidence from a Survey of University Inventors in Computer Science and Electrical Engineering

[Brian Love] Abstract: …This Article examines the pros and cons of university patenting in the high-tech field by reporting the findings of a survey of professors at major U.S. universities who teach and research in the areas of electrical engineering and computer science. Among other findings, survey responses suggest that: Patenting high-tech inventions made on university campuses may not be a profitable undertaking, even at those universities best-positioned to profit from tech transfer… The prospect of obtaining patent rights to the fruits of their research does not motivate university researchers in high-tech fields to conduct more or better research… University patent programs may, instead, actually reduce the quantity and quality of university research in high-tech fields by harming professors’ ability to obtain research funding, to collaborate with faculty from other institutions, and to disseminate their work to their colleagues.  Click here for more.