Google Books and Feist-y Fair Use
[Brandon Butler] Judge Pierre Leval’s opinion today in the Google Books case offers another fascinating glimpse into the richness of his thinking about the concept of fair use. (For more, be sure to attend (or stream) his talk at WCL’s Fourth Annual Peter Jaszi Lecture on November 12.) … Although the outcome in Google Books (Google wins, duh) was obvious to anyone whose paycheck didn’t depend on their believing otherwise, the discussion that gets us there sheds light on a host of hot fair use topics in ways that courts and copyright wonks will be citing and unpacking for years to come. Click here for more.
US Stands in the Way of LDCs’ Pharmaceutical Transition Period
[Sangeeta-Shashikant] As the World Trade Organization’s intellectual property body begins its session today, there is emerging consensus among the organization’s members that the poorest nations in the world, the least developed countries (LDCs), should not have to apply or enforce pharmaceutical product patents or to implement ‘mailbox’ or exclusive marketing rights for as long as they remain LDCs.The WTO Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights Agreement (TRIPS) Council is meeting in Geneva on 15-16 October. However, whether or not these vulnerable nations will clinch their desired demands very much depends on the United States, which remains opposed to LDCs’ requests. Click here for more.
- Letter from U.S. NGOs to President Obama Expressing Deep Concerns Over U.S. Offer. Link.
- William New for IP Watch. WTO IP Committee Suspended Over LDC Extension. Link.
Analysis of the Final TPP (Leaked) Text on Intellectual Property: Mixed Results
[Krista Cox] On October 5, 2015, the twelve trade ministers of the TPP negotiating parties … announced that they had come to an agreement on the large regional trade agreement that had been under negotiations for the past five years. While the agreement has been criticized for a number of reasons, it is important to recognize the areas where the agreement has improved from the initial proposals made by the United States in February 2011. Civil society, technology companies and academics have participated throughout the negotiating process to improve the language of the final text and many of these efforts are reflected in the agreement. Click here for more.
Challenging the Use of the US Special 301 Procedures against Developing Country Access to Medicines Policies – Indian Pharmaceutical Patents and the WTO
[Suzanne Zhou] In April 2014, the United States Trade Representative (USTR) listed India on its Special 301 Priority Watch List, following India’s refusal to grant a patent over the leukemia drug Gleevec and its compulsory licensing of the cancer drug Nexavar. USTR also undertook an out-of-cycle review of India’s intellectual property laws, to determine whether or not to upgrade India to the more serious Priority Foreign Country status, which would potentially trigger retaliation through withdrawal of GSP benefits. In response, India threatened to take the United States to the World Trade Organization’s Dispute Settlement Body over Special 301. This article examines whether such a case would succeed, taking three lines of inquiry. Click here for more.
National IPR Policy Series: Quick Observations on the Leaked Draft of the National IPR Policy
Earlier this week, the “Don’t Trade Our Lives Away” blog leaked the supposed final draft of India’s National IPR Policy (“leaked draft”). This article presents quick comments on this leaked draft… Perhaps one of the strongest criticisms of the First Draft had been that it supposed a nexus between IP and innovation, and various stakeholders had been quick to point this out as problematic, and fallacious. Unfortunately, since the language of the new draft has barely changed (I have managed to count only two-three additions), this remains the underlying issue in the new draft as well. What continues to be worrying in both drafts is sweeping references of benefits of IP to India’s socio-economic development. What constitutes this development and how IPR, and specifically the IPR Policy will achieve it is anyone’s guess, given that there are no references to studies undertaken to assess how IPR contributes to socio-economic development, specifically in India. Click here for more.
TPP Governments Try to Lessen Stakeholder ISDS Fears
[Mike Palmedo] Trans Pacific Partnership governments are trying to convince stakeholders that the controversial Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) mechanism in the agreement is an improvement over those found in previous trade agreements. ISDS rules in NAFTA have allowed Eli Lilly to sue Canada over its standards of patentable subject matter. Tobacco companies have used ISDS to sue Uruguay and Australia over health measures which the companies say encroach on their trademark rights. The negotiators want to convince the general public that corporations will have a more difficult time using the new ISDS system. Click here for more.