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November 17, 2004
Blogging WIPO 2.0
The subject line of an email from the Union for the Public Domain (UPD) says it all: "Broadcasters Try to Steal More of the Public Domain this Week at WIPO."
As regular Copyfight readers may remember, the UN's World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) took an extraordinary step forward in October when it adopted the Development Agenda -- a proposal that the organization throttle back its "IP Uber Alles" philosophy and tap into its considerable power to spur innovation and help humanity. Starting today, the organization will hold the 3-day Twelfth Session of the Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights, and a number of non-government organizations (NGOs), including CPTech, EFF, and the UPD, will be there to urge WIPO to stick to its guns.
My EFF colleague, the indefatigable Cory Doctrow, will pursue four major initiatives on EFF's behalf:
- asking WIPO to apply public-interest considerations in revising the highly controversial Broadcasting Treaty, which proposes the creation of a new and unnecessary layer of pseudo-copyright protection for broadcasters (see EFF's statement [PDF] for details);
- joining other NGOs in proposing an alternative draft [PDF] of the treaty -- one that targets the problem (signal theft) rather than adds new rights;
- advocating filling in the "negative space" at WIPO -- that is, using the organization to establish a miniumum global set of rights for the public as well as for copyright holders; and
- supporting 20 tech companies that will speak out against the inclusion of "webcasters" in the Broadcasting Treaty.
Here's the best part: we get to tune in and "hear" what's going on as it happens. Below, two spots to watch for live-blogging from behind WIPO's closed doors:
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