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IP-Watch Summer Interns

IP-Watch interns talk about their Geneva experience in summer 2013. 2:42.

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9. These terms and your posts and contributions shall be governed and interpreted in accordance with the laws of Switzerland (without giving effect to conflict of laws principles thereof) and any dispute exclusively settled by the Courts of the Canton of Geneva.

The Politicization Of The US Patent System

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.


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    Opposition Heavy To US Environmental Health Agency Plan To Privatise Open Access Journal

    Published on 28 February 2006 @ 12:18 pm

    Intellectual Property Watch

    By Steve Gibb for Intellectual Property Watch

    WASHINGTON, DC – The director of the US National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) is facing overwhelming opposition to a plan to privatise an open-access environmental science journal NIEHS publishes, according to public comments on the plan.

    NIEHS last September proposed privatizing Environmental Health Perspectives (EHP), www.ehponline.org, a free, online monthly that publishes information on major toxics like dioxin, mercury and lead and distributes the data free to developing countries. The privatization plan came after a budgetary review, and NIEHS’ new director suggested the funding could be re-directed toward research.

    But the privatization plan is drawing broad domestic criticism from academics, state health agencies, and many US Environmental Protection Agency officials, who fear they would lose access to critical data that helps agency scientists set toxic risk limits and other policies affecting vulnerable populations, according to comments obtained under the Freedom of Information Act.

    There also is a lengthy set of international comments expressing opposition to the plan as well. In addition to comments from Taiwan, Israel, Argentina, New Zealand and India, over 35 Chinese scientists emphasized the value of the information to them in addressing the country’s environmental challenges and praised EHP’s quarterly Chinese edition. “Don’t let the world fall down into black fog,” a Taiwanese commenter says.

    NIEHS director David Schwartz said in a recent interview that he will decide about the privatization option in the next three to six months. “We will be exploring all the opportunities and options available to make this the strongest environmental science journal that is accessible to the widest audience. If he opts for privatization, he likely would establish a formal procedure soliciting bids, reviewing them, and deciding on open-access policies for the archives.

    About 94 percent of over 330 public respondents opposed privatization of the journal outright, saying it would be a “disadvantage” or “strong disadvantage.” In addition, just over four percent support privatization only if EHP’s content remains free online, according to an analysis of the comments. Less than two percent of the comments supported unconditional privatization.

    Several commenters highlighted their preference for submitting works to open access journals. “Many high-quality journals are published by both non-profit private sector organizations such as technical societies and by commercial publishers. In general, I prefer to publish in journals that are low cost or open access to maximize readership of the work,” a University of Utah toxicologist said.

    “The journal has been, without question, the most important and objective resource on environmental health matters in this country, and perhaps in the world today,” said a Harvard Medical School professor. “I oppose in the strongest terms possible the privatization of EHP, as it would be a clear cut abrogation of the government’s responsibility to inform its citizens in an area of rapidly increasing importance.”

    Another commenter said EHP’s credibility, strong conflict of interest disclosure policies and neutrality are at stake. “There would be conflict of interest violations and slanted research and reporting” if it were privatized, according to the commenter. A number of librarians also objected to the plan, with one saying the result would be “conflict of interest in the business sector, propaganda in the non-profit sector.”

    Another said the journal “helps to raise the level of discourse in this vital field for building the technological dimension of a sustainable civilization.”

    One group of commenters focused on the long-range value of the publication, predicting that, “sustaining a healthy planet and human population will replace biomedical research as the dominant science challenge of the 21st century.”

     


    Leave a Reply

    We welcome your participation in article and blog comment threads, and other discussion forums, where we encourage you to analyse and react to the content available on the Intellectual Property Watch website. By participating in discussions or reader forums, or by submitting opinion pieces or comments to articles, blogs, reviews or multimedia features, you are consenting to these rules.

    We welcome your participation in article and blog comment threads, and other discussion forums, where we encourage you to analyse and react to the content available on the Intellectual Property Watch website.

    By participating in discussions or reader forums, or by submitting opinion pieces or comments to articles, blogs, reviews or multimedia features, you are consenting to these rules.

    1. You agree that you are fully responsible for the content that you post. You will not knowingly post content that violates the copyright, trademark, patent or other intellectual property right of any third party or which you know is under a confidentiality obligation preventing its publication and that you will request removal of the same should you discover that you have violated this provision. Likewise, you may not post content that is libelous, defamatory, obscene, abusive, that violates a third party's right to privacy, that otherwise violates any applicable local, state, national or international law, that amounts to spamming or that is otherwise inappropriate. You may not post content that degrades others on the basis of gender, race, class, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sexual preference, disability or other classification. Epithets and other language intended to intimidate or to incite violence are also prohibited. Furthermore, you may not impersonate others.

    2. You understand and agree that Intellectual Property Watch is not responsible for any content posted by you or third parties. You further understand that IP Watch does not monitor the content posted. Nevertheless, IP Watch may monitor the any user-generated content as it chooses and reserves the right to remove, edit or otherwise alter content that it deems inappropriate for any reason whatever without consent nor notice. We further reserve the right, in our sole discretion, to remove a user's privilege to post content on our site. IP Watch is not in any manner endorsing the content of the discussion forums and cannot and will not vouch for its reliability or otherwise accept liability for it.

    3. By submitting any contribution to IP Watch, you warrant that your contribution is your own original work and that you have the right to make it available to IP Watch for all purposes and you agree to indemnify IP Watch, its directors, employees and agents against all damages, legal fees and others expenses that may be incurred by IP Watch as a result of your breach of warranty or of these terms.

    4. You further agree not to publish any personal information about yourself or anyone else (for example telephone number or home address). If you add a comment to a blog, be aware that your email address will be apparent.

    5. IP Watch will not be liable for any loss including but not limited to the following (whether such losses are foreseen, known or otherwise): loss of data, loss of revenue or anticipated profit, loss of business, loss of opportunity, loss of goodwill or injury to reputation, losses suffered by third parties, any indirect, consequential or exemplary damages.

    6. You understand and agree that the discussion forums are to be used only for non-commercial purposes. You may not solicit funds, promote commercial entities or otherwise engage in commercial activity in our discussion forums.

    7. You acknowledge and agree that you use and/or rely on any information obtained through the discussion forums at your own risk.

    8. For any content that you post, you hereby grant to IP Watch the royalty-free, irrevocable, perpetual, exclusive and fully sub-licensable license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform and display such content in whole or in part, world-wide and to incorporate it in other works, in any form, media or technology now known or later developed.

    9. These terms and your posts and contributions shall be governed and interpreted in accordance with the laws of Switzerland (without giving effect to conflict of laws principles thereof) and any dispute exclusively settled by the Courts of the Canton of Geneva.

     

     
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