[A2k] IP-Watch: US Ambassador Sees Hope For WIPO Visually Impaired Treaty This Year

Thirukumaran Balasubramaniam thiru at keionline.org
Thu Sep 13 05:04:26 PDT 2012


US Ambassador Sees Hope For WIPO Visually Impaired Treaty This Year	 

Published on 13 September 2012 @ 12:22 pm

By William New, Intellectual Property Watch

United States Ambassador Betty King told a gathering of journalists at the US mission yesterday of the important work being done at the international institutions under her responsibility in Geneva, including the World Intellectual Property Organization and World Health Organization.

At WIPO, King said there are legal systems that govern the crossborder flow of copyrighted material, and that the US is “very much hoping to get a treaty on that – or hoping to get some legal instrument on that – by the end of this year” that will allow those materials to flow to blind and visually impaired readers.

The subject of whether it will be a treaty or a lesser instrument is the matter of debate in the WIPO negotiations, but the US in particular was accused of blocking quick progress toward a treaty in July.

At the July meeting of the WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights (SCCR), it was agreed to leave open the possibility of an instrument being negotiated at a high-level diplomatic conference in 2013 (IPW, WIPO, 26 July 2012).

It is unclear if the issue will come up at the annual WIPO General Assembly in early October, but the next meeting of the SCCR is scheduled for 19-23 November, with the treaty for print-disabled readers prominently on the agenda.



Thiru Balasubramaniam
Geneva Representative
Knowledge Ecology International (KEI)

thiru at keionline.org

Tel: +41 22 791 6727
Mobile: +41 76 508 0997

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