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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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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.

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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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    European Parliament Set To Reprimand Mandelson For Pressuring Thailand

    Published on 9 May 2008 @ 8:53 am

    Intellectual Property Watch

    By David Cronin for Intellectual Property Watch
    BRUSSELS – The European Parliament looks set to take Brussels’ top trade official to task over his latest attempt to persuade Thailand that it should revise its policy on pharmaceutical patents.

    Shortly after a new government was installed in Bangkok earlier this year, European Union trade commissioner Peter Mandelson urged it to review a series of compulsory licenses issued by the previous administration that overruled patents on several medicines.

    When a copy of Mandelson’s letter, dated 21 February [see attached], was obtained by members of the European Parliament (MEPs) in the past few weeks, it drew an angry response. Some MEPs have accused the European Commission of backtracking on commitments it has made to support the use of such measures as compulsory licensing in order to reduce the price of medicines in developing countries.

    In discussions held this week, representatives of the Parliament’s political groups agreed to formally protest at Mandelson’s letter. They also decided to request that Mandelson appears before the Parliament’s international trade committee in the near future to answer questions about the surrounding issues.

    Vittorio Agnoletto, an Italian MEP who has been actively involved in the access to medicines debate, said: “We absolutely cannot accept this.”

    Agnoletto alleged that there is a contradiction between statements that Mandelson has made to the Parliament and those contained in his letter. “He is using two different languages,” Agnoletto added. “I have the impression he is working more for the pharmaceutical industry than for the Commission.”

    In his letter – addressed to Thai Commerce Minister Mingkwan Saengsuwan, Mandelson said that the European Union is “one of the most important sources of foreign direct investment in Thailand.” Bangkok’s stance on compulsory licensing, he continued, “has raised some concern among EU investors, particularly the pharmaceutical industry.” Industry has frequently raised the concern that uncertainty about patent protection for companies’ products is a deterrent to investment.

    Mandelson said that he supported a declaration approved by the World Trade Organization at its 2001 ministerial conference in Doha, Qatar. That declaration reinforced WTO rules that allow a flexible approach to be taken to intellectual property rights when issues of public health are at stake.

    Still, he argued that compulsory licensing should be “an exceptional measure” and that alternatives such as negotiations with drugs companies should be explored before it is resorted to. “Against this background, I was rather surprised to learn that the outgoing minister for public health has reportedly announced a new set of compulsory licenses for new drugs before his departure,” he said.

    This is the second time that Mandelson is known to have queried the Thai policy on pharmaceutical patents. During 2007, he wrote a similar letter to several Thai ministers after Bangkok decided to issue compulsory licenses for three medicines used to treat HIV/AIDS and one for heart disease.

    After being questioned by MEPs, Mandelson offered assurances in October last year that he would not do anything to undermine access to medicines in what he described as “poor developing countries.” Thailand is, however, recognised as a middle-income country by the United Nations.

    Alexandra Heumber, a campaigner with the humanitarian aid agency Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders) welcomed the MEPs’ decision to complain over the alleged contradictions in Mandelson’s statements.

    Each of the EU’s most powerful institutions – the Commission, Parliament and Council of Ministers – has undertaken to promote access to affordable medicines in developing countries, she said. “It is important that each of them takes its responsibility seriously,” she added. “If we don’t have strong political will to affirm the commitments made at Doha and to support the flexibilities it provides for, then they will never be put into practice.”

    According to Heumber, the Doha declaration leaves it at the discretion of developing countries to decide when they wish to issue compulsory licenses and that it does not contain any obligation that negotiations take place with a patent-holder beforehand.

    “Peter Mandelson is trying to reinterpret the Doha declaration,” she said.

    David Cronin may be reached at info@ip-watch.ch.

     


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    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.

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