IPA Blog

Delegates at the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) in Geneva spent this week discussing (for the 34th time) how to provide adequate intellectual property protection for the ‘traditional knowledge’ that is typically part of the cultural heritage of indigenous peoples.
Occasionally, copyright and the rights of disabled people are framed as somehow incompatible—as though the former may preclude the latter—but to my mind these rights are definitely not mutually exclusive.
Fridays at the SCCR are always unpredictable, and Friday 5 May was no exception. Yet whereas the usual drill is the final plenary dragging on late into the evening to enable time for a satisfactory closure, today was a little more mysterious. For starters, there was more backroom huddling than open plenary debate at times when the sessions were the
Today the SCCR talks ticked onwards to the ‘and persons of other disabilities’ part of the agenda item ‘limitations and exceptions for educational and research institutions and for persons with other disabilities’ (referring to non-visual impairments). Professor Blake Reid, of the University of Colorado, an IP and disability law maven, presented th
Committee Chair Daren Tang brought to bear his endearing blend of levitas and gravitas this morning as he started the day’s negotiations on ‘limitations and exceptions for libraries and archives’. As he did so, Tang reminded the delegates of the burden of responsibility they bear, something that’s becoming his signature patter. He said their decisi
Today’s talks unfolded almost entirely behind closed doors during so-called ‘informals’, a setting usually employed to unblock a particularly tough impasse, when consensus on the floor of the plenary has proved impossible. The informals, which take place in a separate chamber on the WIPO campus, are strictly for country delegations only. NGOs are n
SCCR 34 opened this rainy Geneva morning, if not with a bang, at least with the hope that proceedings could ‘swing’ under the leadership of the committee’s upbeat new chairman, onetime jazzman, Daren Tang. After WIPO Director General Francis Gurry passed him the gavel, Tang, who is CEO of the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore, promised to d
WHAT DO Alanis Morissette, Margaret Atwood, Bryan Adams, Marie Claire Blais, Michael Bublé, Sharon Pollock, Gordon Lightfoot and William Deverell have in common? Yes, they are all Canadian (eh?)
And so ends another SCCR marathon: hundreds of delegates locked in some 40 hours of discussion over five days; only God knows how many mini-sandwiches, cups of undrinkable coffee and MBs of data have been consumed. The IPA put in a strong showing this time. For the first time ever the IPA delegation included its President (elect) and the Chair of t
Professor Daniel Seng returned to the chamber briefly this morning to field more questions and comments about his mega-study. A night’s sleep had clearly worked wonders on everyone, and the questions came thick and fast from all corners of the room. Some delegates wanted clarifications; others suggested ways to improve the report. And it seemed tha

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