Global Congress, December 15-17 in Delhi, India

The Fourth Global Congress will open tomorrow at the National Law University in Delhi, India. The website with the program and other details is here. In advance of the meeting, the organizers have posted a series of discussions with some of the keynote speakers: Shamnad Basheer, Susan Sell, Michael Geist and Zakir Thomas.

State of the Commons: 1 Billion Creative Commons Works

[Ryan Merkley]  I’m proud to share with you Creative Commons’ 2015 State of the Commons report, our best effort to measure the immeasurable scope of the commons by looking at the CC licensed content, along with content marked as public domain, that comprise the slice of the commons powered by CC tools. Creative Commoners have known all along that collaboration, sharing, and cooperation are a driving force for human evolution. And so for many it will come as no surprise that in 2015 we achieved a tremendous milestone: over 1.1 billion CC licensed photos, videos, audio tracks, educational materials, research articles, and more have now been contributed to the shared global commons. Click here for more.

GRULAC Proposal for Analysis of Copyright Related to the Digital Environment

[Group of Latin American and Caribbean Countries (GRULAC)] Introduction: GRULAC presents a proposal of discussion on questions regarding the update of copyrights related to ongoing uses of protected intellectual goods in the digital environment in the works of the Standing Committee of Copyright and Related Rights of the World Intellectual Property Organization (SCCR/WIPO). Click here for more.

Statement at the Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights: Thirty-First Session

[Sean Flynn] … Many of the issues that educational institutions face are the same as libraries. And therefore the proposal of merging parts of the two discussions is appropriate. I think it helpful to think of the desirable products of this Committee in two categories: 1) a set of norms (whether in the form of principles or binding text) and, 2) a set of soft law technical guidance materials. Click here for more.

See also: Catherine Saez, IP Watch. Artists’ Call For Rights Wakes Up WIPO Copyright Committee. Link.

Health GAP Submission to U.S. House of Representatives Ways and Means on the Trans Pacific Partnership and Access to Medicine

[Brook Baker] In its issue analysis paper, the Committee on Ways and Means posed three basic questions about the Trans Pacific Partnership and its impacts on access to medicines: 1) Does the current TPP text provide an appropriate balance between the need to incentivize innovation and to provide access to affordable medicines for patients in developing countries, like the balance struck under the May 10 Agreement of 2007?  2)Does the current TPP text either require changes to existing U.S. health or intellectual property laws, or prevent the United States from making reasonable changes to those laws?  3)What period of exclusivity is provided for biologic medicines, and is the period sufficient to incentivize the production of new biologic medicines in the future while also ensuring access to affordable medicines? This submission from Health Global Access Project (GAP) discusses each of these issues and includes a chart analyzing relevant textual provisions and their impact on access to medicines. Click here for more.

See also:  House Ways and Means Committee hearing page, with testimony from Stephen Ezell, Rohit Malpani, Joseph Damond and Peter Maybarduk. Link.

Preliminary analysis of the final TPP Healthcare Transparency Annex:

[Deborah Gleeson] The intent of Annex 26-A of the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) is to discipline national pricing and reimbursement schemes for pharmaceutical products and medical devices. While the language of the Annex is framed around principles of transparency and fairness, the objectives of the pharmaceutical and medical device industries clearly go much further than this. The ultimate objective of the industry is expanded market access at monopoly prices dictated by industry: the target is mechanisms that impact on both market access and prices. Click here for more.

The Effect of Increased Copyright Enforcement on Access to Primary School Textbooks in Panama

[Mike Palmedo] In the early 2000s, the International Intellectual Property Association complained that large scale piracy of textbooks was common in Panama. It sought the intervention of U.S. trade officials, noting that “the major forms of piracy afflicting the U.S. book publishing industry in the region involve commercial photocopying piracy.” Panama was engaged in various trade negotiations with the U.S. in the early-to-mid 2000s (first as part of the failed Free Trade Area of the Americas, then as a party to bilateral trade agreement negotiations which were ultimately successful), giving the U.S. leverage to seek policy changes regarding the enforcement of copyrights. Click here for more.

How the TPP Will Affect You and Your Digital Rights

[Maira Sutton] The Internet is a diverse ecosystem of private and public stakeholders. By excluding a large sector of communities—like security researchers, artists, libraries, and user rights groups—trade negotiators skewed the priorities of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) towards major tech companies and copyright industries that have a strong interest in maintaining and expanding their monopolies of digital services and content. Click here for more.

Copyright in Europe: Minimal Reform to Avoid Crucial Questions

[La Quadratre du Net] Today, the European Commission has presented its proposal to reform copyright law in the European Union. This package includes a proposal for a regulation on portability of online services, as well as a communication to announcing future reforms to follow in 2016. The European Commission has thus confirmed that it does not wish to reopen the file on the InfoSoc directive, reflecting its reluctance and lack of ambition on this issue. Click here for more.