Judge Leval on Fair Use and Google Books: A Sketch of a Story

[Brandon Butler] Last Thursday, Judge Pierre N. Leval, a renowned fair use scholar and judge on the Second Circuit Court of Appeals in New York, delivered the Fourth Annual Peter A. Jaszi Distinguished Lecture on Intellectual Property (you can watch the recording at that link) at the law school where I teach, the American University Washington College of Law… Judge Leval recently authored the landmark opinion in Authors Guild v. Google, vindicating Google’s massive digitization program which, in collaboration with research libraries all over the country, has made more than 20 million books full-text searchable and available for data-mining with the very cool Ngram Viewer.  Click here for more.

Public Citizen-CIPPIC Analysis of the Trans Pacific Partnership e-Commerce Chapter

[Burcu Kilic and Tamir Israel] For those catching up on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) text, here is the analysis of the e-commerce chapter we sent around. It is a joint publication of Public Citizen and Canadian Internet Policy & Public Interest Clinic (CIPPIC) at the University of Ottawa Faculty of Law. The chapter sets rules that, if ratified, will shape the development of the digital economy for years to come. The clauses highlight the importance of e-commerce and of eliminating trade restrictions by expanding the legal use of e-commerce platforms, paperless trade administration, protecting users from abuse and damages, and removing ‘non-tariff barriers’. Click here for more.

Letter to Prime Minister and Ministers of International Trade, Health, and International Development re: Access to Medicine and the TPP

[Letter sent to Canadian officials by Richard Elliot on behalf of ten civil society organizations.] …We write to you as Canadian civil society organizations concerned about access to medicines, in Canada and globally. …. We write to you to express our deep concerns with numerous provisions included in the intellectual property, pharmaceutical pricing and investment chapters of the Trans‐Pacific Partnership agreement (TPP). Click here for more.

Evolution of the Copyright Exceptions and Limitations Provision in the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement

[Jonathan Band] (Note: The original version of this paper was posted on October 20, 2015.  It was updated on November 10, 2015 taking into account the release of the official TPP text. (eds.)). The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement contains an important provision concerning achieving balance in the copyright systems of the twelve countries party to that free trade agreement. This provision was not present in the early draft of the agreement. Then, in July 2012, the United States proposed language that formed the basis of the text of the provision. This language subsequently was strengthened over the next three years to its final form. This paper recounts the evolution of this provision. Click here for more.

4 Key Takeaways From Copyright Reform Committee’s Silicon Valley Listening Tour

[Parker Higgins] The House Judiciary Committee, tasked with copyright reform in the Next Great Copyright Act process, has taken its long-running hearing show on the road. This week, members of the committee attended sessions in northern and southern California. The line-up of experts in Santa Clara yesterday was diverse and impressive, and included people like Internet Archive founder Brewster Kahle, noted musician Zoe Keating, iFixit CEO and DMCA activist Kyle Wiens, and of course EFF’s own staff attorney Kit Walsh. Click here for more.

TPP: Threats to Creativity in the Digital Environment

[Katri Stanley] The final text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement, reached by the 12 member countries on October 5, 2105, caused a near-immediate outcry from many within the digital rights advocacy community at what were broadly perceived to be archaic provisions that threatened to further stifle creative activity online. Indeed, such assessments are on point; the released text stipulates the minimum term of protection for copyright and related rights to be the life of the author plus 70 years, and sweeping anti-circumvention provisions similar to those found in the U.S. 1998 Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DCMA) feature heavily. Yet while these provisions are clearly harmful and misguided, in the Latin American context, much of the damage has already been done. Click here for more.

WIPO Committee On Development And IP Agrees On Work Programme

[Catherine Saez] Delegates at the World Intellectual Property Organization Committee on Development and IP (CDIP) ended a weeklong session agreeing on a programme of work for the next session including two future projects to be reconsidered. But this belies the degree of stasis and frustration in the committee. The CDIP met from 9-13 November. Most delegations expressed disappointment at the little progress made during the week, but they did agree to extend a pilot project, and consider a revised version of two new projects at the next session of the committee in the spring 2016. Click for the full story on IP Watch.