Worth the Wait - installment #1

So, finally, the Copyright Office and the Librarian of Congress have spoken (not quite with one voice, of which to come), in the fourth approximately triennial rule-making under Sec. 1201(a)(1) of Title 17, which we were given as part of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998. For those (perhaps wisely) haven't been paying close attention, let me review the bidding. One of the dubious accomplishments of the DMCA was a the introduction of a general prohibition on the unauthorized "circumvention" of so-called "technological protection measures" ...

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IP Brief call for article submissions; Deadline 08/20/10

After a successful round of submissions for our summer issue, we would like to again invite you to submit articles for our fall issue. We are looking for papers that address a legal topic relating to any area of intellectual property.

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AIDS Activist Letter to State Department on Special 301

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Enclosed please find a complaint filed officially with the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Health last week on behalf of Health GAP and a dozen organizations in India, Thailand, Malaysia, Kenya, and Costa Rica regarding U.S. trade policy and the use of the "Special 301" process in ways that undermine access to affordable medicines. Most recently, for example, a court in Brazil last week denied civil society requests for a "compulsory license" to make a key AIDS drug more affordable ...

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EU Seized in Vienna: EU Claims to Drop Some TRIPS-Plus Measures

At the International AIDS Conference in Vienna Wednesday, AIDS activists undertook two actions to express their anger over EU in transit seizures and its pushing for a globalization of in transit seizure rules in the ACTA negotiations and some new information was revealed by the EU DG trade. It appears that the EU has dropped its demands for patent extensions and may have made data exclusivity subject to compulsory licensing in the EU-India FTA.

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Human Rights Groups Challenge USTR Special 301

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On Tuesday July 20, a group of public interest organizations, represented by Sean Flynn, Associate Director of PIJIP, filed a complaint alleging that the Obama administration's trade policy reduces access to medicines in low and middle income nations, and therefore violates international human rights obligations. The complaint was filed with the Special Rapporteur on the Right to Health, Anand Grover, and was released to the public at a press conference at the International AIDS Conference in Vienna.

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Article: Special 301 and Access to Medicine

The enclosed working paper, to be published in the next issue of the Journal on Generic Medicine, argues that the Obama Administration is continuing to use the Special 301 program to threaten sanctions against countries for failing to adopt pharmaceutical policies that are not required by any international agreement but that would, if adopted, lead to restrictions on access to affordable medicines in poor countries.

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IP-Enforcement at AIDS 2010 Vienna

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Enclosed is a schedule of events covering access to medicines and the international intellectual property enforcement agenda at the 2010 International AIDS Conference Vienna July 18-23. Events include a review of newer threats to access to medicines, and a press conference announcing a complaint to Special Rapporteur on the Right to Health concerning USTR's annual Special 301 Report.

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New ACTA Text Leaked

The advocacy group La Quadrature du Net has received and posted leaked full consolidated text of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, dated July 1st 2010. This is the full text from the Luzern round of negotiations, including the name of the negotiating parties along with their positions. It apparently comes from the civil liberties committee (LIBE) of the European Parliament.

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Credit Where It's Due...

Last month, Victoria A. Espinel, the new U.S. Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator, transmitted to President Obama and Congress the 2010 "Joint Strategic Plan on Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordination," the first report of its kind. Especially notable is the attention that the report devotes to fair use (and other limitations and exceptions to copyright. This ungrudging acknowledgment of the importance of fair use and cognate doctrines is unprecedented, to the best of my knowledge, in official U.S. pronouncements on the subject.

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Internet Groups Introduce ACTA redline

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A coalition of 10 U.S. tech companies and internet rights groups have submitted suggested changes to ACTA to the US Trade Representative. The changes aim to soften the impacts of the agreement on internet service provider liability and user rights to use copyrighted content on and off the internet.

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