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Intellectual Property Watch
Original news and analysis on international IP policy
Updated: 16 min 53 sec ago
The World Health Organization this week is holding its first conference on health and climate change. The major objective of the conference is to raise awareness on the impact of climate change on health, according to the WHO, which said it aims to strengthen its voice in the debate.
The inclusion of intellectual property in the ongoing negotiations of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership between 16 countries, most of them Asian, is raising concerns about "TRIPS-plus" measures that could jeopardise generic drugs production in India, according to Médecins Sans Frontières.
Faced with the worst outbreak of Ebola since its discovery some 40 years ago, the world is scrambling for treatments. A World Health Organization-convened panel of experts has decided it is ethical to use experimental treatments. Why is there no treatment available even after 40 years? Market failure, not intellectual property rights, says the WHO.
A group of countries has submitted a new proposal to the upcoming meeting of the World Intellectual Property Organization budget committee to allow the continued participation of indigenous peoples representatives in WIPO’s committee on traditional knowledge and genetic resources.
Drug regulatory authorities are meeting this week in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil to discuss global regulatory issues such as vaccine regulation, falsified products, and pharmacovigilance. A “pre-conference” focused on biosimilars, with civil society warning on barriers to access to those products.
The Washington Post story, How patent reform’s fraught politics have left USPTO still without a boss (July 30), is a vivid account of how patent reform has divided the US economy, preempting a possible replacement for David Kappos who stepped down 18 months ago. The division is even bigger than portrayed. Universities have lined up en masse to oppose reform, while main street businesses that merely use technology argue for reform. Reminiscent of the partisan divide that has paralyzed US politics, this struggle crosses party lines and extends well beyond the usual inter-industry debates. Framed in terms of combating patent trolls through technical legal fixes, there lurks a broader economic concern – to what extent ordinary retailers, bank, restaurants, local banks, motels, realtors, and travel agents should bear the burden of defending against patents as a cost of doing business.
The European Commission recently launched a public consultation on the protection of geographical indications for non-agricultural products.
Intellectual Property Watch is pleased to announce a joint internship opportunity with the DiploFoundation/Geneva Internet Platform in Geneva, covering events and issues related to internet governance.
The recent case of a monkey selfie that went viral on the web raised thorny issues of ownership between a (human) photographer and Wikimedia. Two attorneys from Morrison & Foerster sort out the relevant copyright law.
At a recent meeting of the UN Commission on Science and Technology for Development (CSTD), a Cuban expert offered a humorous – but at the same time serious – vision of global internet governance. Below are his remarks.
WIPO Lex is a publicly available online database under the World Intellectual Property Organization providing streamlined access to the intellectual property systems of almost 200 jurisdictions. The database now features over 12,000 legal texts, some 600 treaties and is operational in six languages: English, Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian and Spanish. Intellectual Property Watch takes a look at this resource.
A recent paper published by the Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition criticises a joint study by the European patent and trademark offices as lacking insight about the economic effects of intellectual property.
The Australian government is seeking to amend its copyright act to address online copyright infringement. To that purpose, a discussion paper has issued for public input until 1 September. In particular, the paper looks at trends in similar nations and proposes measures to dry up business models operating outside of Australia, and to extend the responsibility of internet service providers.
Universities Allied for Essential Medicines is calling for new incentive models for research and development so that new treatments can be found for neglected tropical diseases to fight antibiotic resistance, and is asking that health issues supersede trade interests.
Switzerland is considering the “modernisation” of its copyright law to adapt the rights and obligations of various stakeholders to the “realities” of the internet. The country’s generous exception on private use of downloaded material appears to be preserved in the proposed change but internet service providers might feel the pinch.
A new legal analysis looks at the 1 July oral hearing of the European Court of Justice (CJEU) on Spain’s nullity actions against the regulations on the “unitary patent” and its language regime.
Compulsory licences should be issued to roll out generic versions of innovative HCV drugs. Only generic competition can push down the extortionate prices of these lifesaving medicines, while placing equitable access and public interest before monopolistic pharma companies’ business strategies, Daniele Dionisio argues.
A new United Kingdom copyright exception for private copying cleared Parliament on 29 July and will become law in October. The change brought cheers from high-tech and digital rights groups. UK Music, however, said the new regulation will hurt creators and that it is considering legal action.