Central European Countries Establish Visegrad Patent Institute To Reduce Costs, Facilitate Applications

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WARSAW – In a move towards increased regional cooperation in the field of intellectual property, Poland, Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic have signed an agreement to set up the Visegrad Patent Institute (VPI). And representatives of the parties to the agreement say that their ambitions reach further, towards ensuring the recently-established body becomes a regional hub for patent cooperation in Central-Eastern Europe.

IP-Watch Geneva IP Delegates List Updated

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Intellectual Property Watch offers a partial list of the government delegates in Geneva with responsibility for intellectual property issues at the United Nations and World Trade Organization. The newly updated list is now available, exclusively for subscribers. [Note: IP-Watch content is free to most developing countries, just register online here]

CJEU Renders Landmark Decision On Private Copying Levies

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From Hogan Lovells: Private copying levies in the Member States have occupied the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) quite a few times, previously for example in decision C‑521/11 from 2013. With the current decision in Nokia vs. Copydan Båndkopi (C‑463/12), the CJEU answers some of the most discussed questions surrounding copyright levies […]

Gathering Looks At Governance Of WIPO, IP Governance In Multilateral Fora

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On 5 March, the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) in collaboration with Oxford University’s Global Economic Governance Programme (GEG) hosted an event in Geneva to discuss challenges and issues in intellectual property governance.

UN Human Rights Council Debates Report Criticising Copyright

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Copyright might run counter to human rights, says a new report from the United Nations Special Rapporteur in the field of cultural rights. In the report, she provides a number of recommendations, including encouraging UN World Intellectual Property Organization members to support the adoption of international instruments on limitations and exceptions to copyright. The report is under consideration by the Human Rights Council and was debated extensively today.

No, Democracy is Not Excess Baggage

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There was quite some controversy at the 3-4 March 2015 UNESCO Connecting the Dots Conference regarding whether or not the term “democracy” should be included in the conference’s outcome statement to make it clear that internet governance must be democratic.

European Commission Urged To Fix EU Law Before Addressing IPR Protections In Third Countries

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Efforts to revamp protection for and enforcement of intellectual property rights in non-EU countries are welcome, but the European Commission should get Europe’s IPR house in order first, a new draft report by the European Parliament International Trade (INTA) Committee says. Meanwhile, internal IPR reform is advancing on several fronts, said the EC, which gave Intellectual Property Watch an update on the various measures.

In TPP, USTR Seeks To Boost Criminal Remedies Against IP Infringement

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United States trade negotiators are seeking to set a “new regional standard” against intellectual property infringement in the Pacific region with the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement. And among the new tools it is seeking is to boost governments’ ability to criminalise IP infringement based on government information as well as that of rights holders, a US trade official said this week.

Revolving Chairs In The IP World: People Shift Positions. But Interests? Not So Much

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A lot has happened among the global intellectual property community over the past months. Beyond the usual shifts in law offices, many key positions have either changed hands or been filled. For example, the European commissioners changed, and the United States nominated a new “piracy czar” and a new head of the US Patent and Trademark Office. The International Telecommunication Union, UNITAID and other organisations have new heads. And the World Intellectual Property Organization has a new top management team.

Non-governmental organisations and the private sector also saw a lot of movement in recent months, such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the Computer & Communications Industry Association, the International Trademark Association, the International Publishers Association, and the Motion Picture Association of America.

In this article, we take the opportunity to catch up. Here is a look at some of the changes.

NetMundial Initiative: Still Breathing

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After a report by the Register’s Kieren McCarthy on a postponement of the inaugural meeting of the NetMundial Initiative (NMI) Council discussions were revived over the need for the new body in several mailing lists.