US Signs WIPO Marrakesh Treaty On Copyright Exceptions For The BlindPublished on 11 October 2013 @ 4:14 pm
Intellectual Property Watch
The United States has signed the World Intellectual Property Organization Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, Visually Impaired or Otherwise Print Disabled.
According to the WIPO website, the United States and Zimbabwe signed on 2 October, which appears to bring the number to 57. So far none have ratified it.
Despite signing, the United States might be a long way from ratifying the June 2013 treaty, as noted by Jonathan Band of policybandwidth in Washington, DC, who first announced the US signing.
“Of course, signing the treaty is different from ratifying it,” he said on a listserv. “Signing the treaty was a decision within the control of the Obama Administration. Ratification requires a two-thirds vote of the Senate, and the Senate Republicans have refused to ratify over 30 treaties signed by a variety of administrations over the past four decades, if not longer.”
Experts discussed prospects for US ratification at an event held last month at American University law school (IPW, WIPO, 20 September 2013). At that event, a US official said it would be signed “very soon”.
The list of signers of the Marrakesh Treaty is available here.
The Marrakesh Treaty is available here.