ACTA - Criminal Enforcement

The European Union released the first official consolidated draft of ACTA on Wednesday, April 21. This blog post contains a summary of the section on Criminal Enforcement - including criminal offenses, criminal liability and penalties and sanctions, seizure, forfeiture, confiscation, and destruction, ex officio enforcement, and the rights of the defendant and third parties. It provides an analysis of how this latest text differs from previous leaked versions.

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PIJIP Statement on the Release of the 2010 Special 301 Report

Today the U.S. Trade Representative released the 2010 Special 301 Report, in which it identifies countries it claims "deny adequate and effective protection of intellectual property rights." One of the hallmarks of the report its threatening of countries with trade sanctions for intellectual property policies that do not violate any trade agreement. This use of the report is not required by the authorizing statute and, particularly with respect to access to medicines issues, such use violates international trade and human rights law as well as the Administration's own policies.

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Governor Baldacci Writes Sebelius on Special 301

CC License - photo by rodrigo senna

Governor of Maine wrote to Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Sebelius and US Trade Representative Ron Kirk to express concerns on the use of the Special 301 Report and other trade policy instruments to restrict pharmaceutical pricing programs. US state and local governments negotiate prices for medicaid and other programs that serve low income Americans, but trade officials have attacked similar negotiations abroad.

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Consumers International Publishes Its 2010 IP Watchlist

Consumers International has published a report on flexibilities in copyright laws enjoyed by consumers in a sample of 34 nations. For each nation, the "IP Watchlist" tries to measure "how balanced the country's copyright law is, whether it is enforced in ways that impact consumers' interests, and whether the country fosters the exchange of knowledge in forms that are not encumbered by exclusive rights."

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ACTA and Access to Medicines

I was asked to provide some comments on the impact of ACTA on access to medicines for the April 28 meeting of the Trans Atlantic Consumer Dialogue. This is an extended version of my remarks. My ultimate concern is that his agreement extends incredibly far beyond the core subject of criminal, intentional trademark counterfeiting. It would be far less worrisome for access to medicines and host of other public interest concerns if it was confined to procedures and remedies to battle true, criminal, intentional counterfeiting.

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ACTA Negotiation Date Revealed

Two separate government officials from two different countries have stated that the next ACTA negotiation will be the week of June 28 to July 2. Previous releases have indicated that the meeting will be held in Geneva, Switzerland. Public interest advocates have also been informed off the record that the U.S. government is planning to conduct a notice and comment process on the recently released text. no date for the comment process was indicated.

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Trans-Atlantic Consumer Dialogue (TACD) Hosts International ACTA Meeting

Today the Trans-Atlantic Consumer Dialogue, a trade advisory board to the United States and the European Commission, hosted a series of roundtable discussions in regard to the recent release of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement draft text. It featured a diverse group of panelists, including representatives from universities, European and American public interest groups, and government agencies.

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CCIA Releases Report on Fair Use in the US Economy

Today the Computer and Communications Industry Association (CCIA) released its report “Fair Use in the U.S. Economy,” which measures the economic contributions of industries that rely on flexibilities in copyright law. These contributions are massive, including 16.2% of GDP in 2007, and 23% of real GDP growth over five years. The report was released at a panel on Capitol Hill which included comments by Rep. Zoe Lofgren and PIJIP professor Peter Jaszi.

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Kenyan Supreme Court Stays Enforcement of Anti-Counterfeit Law

The Kenyan Supreme Court issued an order today temporarily preventing the enforcement of the Kenyan Anti-Counterfeit Law with respect to generic medicines. The order may be a good sign for opponents of the bill because the Court recognizes the potential harm anti-counterfeit enforcement could cause.

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ACTA - Civil Enforcement Summary

The European Union released the first official consolidated draft of ACTA on Wednesday, April 21. This blog post contains a summary of the section on Civil Enforcement - including civil proceedings, injunctions, damages, other remedies, privacy issues related to the identification of alleged infringers, and provisional measures. It provides an analysis of how this latest text differs from previous leaked versions.

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