[A2k] Infojustice Roundup - June 4, 2013

Michael Palmedo mpalmedo at wcl.american.edu
Tue Jun 4 04:23:28 PDT 2013


Infojustice Roundup

 

Witnesses at U.S. Trade Hearing Offer Opinions (and Warnings) on
Intellectual Property in Upcoming Negotiations with the EU

 

[Mike Palmedo]On May 29 the Obama Administration's inter-agency Trade
Policy Staff Committee held the first day of its two-day hearing on the
Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP).  Many of the
witnesses who testified in the afternoon offered comments related to
intellectual property and/or privacy on the internet - both subjects
that are expected to be among the most highly controversial in the
upcoming trade negotiations. Below is an account of the testimony
related specifically to intellectual property, along with links to the
full text of written materials they submitted to USTR.  Click here for
more. <http://infojustice.org/archives/29783> 

 

Controversy Over Patent Rights and the Middle Eastern Respiratory
Syndrome Virus

 

[Sangeeta-Shashikant] An investigation conducted by Edward Hammond,
consultant researcher of Third World Network, has revealed that a
leading medical centre in The Netherlands is using a material transfer
agreement (MTA) that claims proprietary rights over the Middle Eastern
Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) virus, contrary to their public denial of
placing restrictions on the virus. A copy of the MTA was obtained by
Third World Network some weeks ago under the public records law of the
North Carolina, the United States, as part of our ongoing research into
potential biopiracy of the MERS virus, triggered by a media report of
criticism by Saudi Arabia's Deputy Minister of Health of Erasmus on this
matter. Click here for more. <http://infojustice.org/archives/29777> 

Technical Note: The LDC TRIPS Transition Extension and the Question of
Rollback

 

[ICTSD] ...On November 5, 2012, Haiti on behalf of WTO LDC Members
requested a further extension of the(TRIPS) transition "for as long as
the WTO Member remains a least developed country." The extension request
is stated unconditionally in the sense that it does not incorporate a
no-rollback commitment similar to that embodied in the 2005 extension.
At the request of Nepal on behalf of LDC Members, this proposal was
discussed at the TRIPS Council meeting of March 5-6, 2013. While most
countries agree in principle with an extension, there are disagreements
about the modalities of such a measure including its time frame and
scope. Click here for more. <http://infojustice.org/archives/29790>  

 

Joint Statement by National Federation of the Blind President Marc
Maurer and MPAA Chairman Senator Chris Dodd on Importance of Completing
WIPO Visually Impaired Treaty

 

[Joint press release]  NFB and MPAA ... fully support a Treaty that
facilitates access to published works in the form of text, notation
and/or related illustrations for the blind and print disabled to address
the book famine wherein the blind and print disabled have access to less
than five percent of published works worldwide. The Treaty must achieve
two overarching goals: creating exceptions and limitations in copyright
law which allow published works to be converted into formats accessible
to the blind and print disabled, and permitting accessible copies of
published works to be shared across international borders. Click here
for the full statement.
<https://nfb.org/joint-statement-national-federation-blind-president-mar
c-maurer-and-mpaa-chairman-senator-chris-dodd> 

 

Rep. McDermott v. State Department - Conflicting Views on the Trans
Pacific Parternship and Access to Medicines

 

[Mike Palmedo] Last week Jim McDermott wrote an op-ed in Roll Call on
the TPP in which he warned that the U.S. proposal for intellectual
property in the TPP could "cost millions of lives in developing
countries." McDermott wrote that the proposal extends patent monopolies
on pharmaceuticals further than TRIPS:  "It would extend patents beyond
the current 20-year norm and block national regulators from using
existing clinical trial data to approve the production of generic or
"bio-similar" drugs. Alarmingly, the proposal also outlaws 'pre-grant
opposition' that allows doctors and patients to provide information to
their governments about patents they believe do not meet national rules,
an important democratic safeguard. The proposal also requires the
patenting of new versions of old medicines, even when the new versions
offer no additional therapeutic benefits. It even requires patenting of
surgical, therapeutic and diagnostic methods, which not only is
unethical but also could increase medical liability and the cost of
practice." Click here for more. <http://infojustice.org/archives/29795> 

 

Consumer rights groups: Trans-Pacific Partnership to hurt consumers

 

[Santiago Times] Consumer interest groups from across Latin America met
in Santiago to express concerns about a free trade agreement that will
unite 12 major economies, saying the deal is being signed in secret...
the consumer rights groups object to provisions that would restrict
domestic regulations of genetically modified foods, pesticides and
additives, as well as raise intellectual property protections above
existing World Trade Organization rules. "Many countries will be forced
to extend the duration of protection copyright for 20 years or more,
which will result in early works of the past century to be closed to the
public domain for decades," the groups' statement said. Click here for
full story on santiagotimes.cl
<http://www.santiagotimes.cl/world/chile-abroad/26233-consumer-rights-gr
oups-trans-pacific-partnership-to-hurt-consumers> 

 

The full statement and Consumers International press release is here
<http://es.consumersinternational.org/news-and-media/news/2013/05/declar
aci%C3%B3n-organizaciones-lac#.Ua3MDJxDVAM> .  

 

Second Edition of Crowdfunded Contest Future of Copyright 2.0

 

[Modern Poland Foundation] It's hard to find a person who is pleased
with the current shape of the copyright system. In most countries.
People who  attempt to earn a living from this system also try to have
digital monitoring systems work for them. Meanwhile, users are have less
and less rights... The public domain is shrinking. There are some
efforts to expropriate some of its areas. Therefore, user's rights are
tightened. There are new proposals on the table that focus on finding a
way to narrow fair use and to cut proposed exceptions for unprivileged
people (impaired or just living in Global South). Therefore, once again
we ask the following question: what should a good copyright system look
like? Is it possible to live without sharing? Will artists disappear if
we make copyright less strict? Can we make culture without artists?
Click here for more. <http://infojustice.org/archives/29769>  

 

 

 

 

--

Mike Palmedo

Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property

American University Washington College of Law

4801 Massachusetts Ave., NW, Washington, D.C. 20016

W: 202-274-4442 | M: 571-289-3683

wcl.ameican.edu | infojustice.org | pijip-impact.org

 




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