Archive for the ‘ACTA’ category

Why is the EU asking the ECJ to review ACTA and does it matter?

February 27th, 2012

Last week the European Commissioner for Trade, Karel De Gucht, released a statement announcing that the EU will refer the ACTA (Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement) to the European Court of Justice (ECJ). The ECJ will be asked to assess whether ACTA is incompatible – in any way – with the EU’s fundamental rights and freedoms, such as freedom of expression and information or data protection and the right to property in case of intellectual property.

What reason did the Commissioner give to explain the referral to the ECJ?

  • A fear that ACTA will censor websites? No.

Canada signs ACTA

September 30th, 2011

Earlier today, Ed Fast, the Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, signed the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement. The press release announcing the signing stated the following:

“Counterfeit and pirated goods are an increasingly global problem that requires a globally coordinated solution,” said Minister Fast. “We all have an interest in combatting counterfeiting and piracy because these activities cost billions of dollars each year in revenue and trade losses, which translates into higher prices, lost income and lost jobs for people employed in a range of industries—from film and pharmaceuticals to electronics. Counterfeit goods also pose a real threat to the health and safety of people because the producers of goods such as drugs and auto parts evade the rigorous rules, standards and guidelines that are in place to protect consumers.”

Signing Ceremony for the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) this Weekend

September 27th, 2011

The Japan Ministry of Foreign Affairs has issued a press release announcing that ACTA will be signed this weekend. Here is the text from the press release.

  1. On Saturday, October 1, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan will hold the signing ceremony for the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) at Iikura Guest House, Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
  2. The Agreement was inspired in significant part by Japan’s proposal at the G8 Gleneagles Summit in 2005 to create a new international framework against counterfeit and pirated products, in the context of the heightened awareness of the need for a higher degree of intellectual property protection. Its negotiation has been led by a strong initiative of Japan, the United States and other key partners.

UK to get even tougher with IP crime

August 4th, 2011

Yesterday, the UK Government released a number of proposals to modernise the UK’s intellectual property laws. One of the reports is dedicated to outlining The UK IP Crime Strategy. The rational for the strategy is clear: counterfeiting and piracy are of concern both as a barrier to growth and because of the wider ills to which they have been linked, which include dangerous goods, online fraud and serious organised crime.

The Liberal Digital Canada Plan and Copyright

April 11th, 2011

Earlier today, Marc Garneau and guest commentators Michael Geist and Steve Anderson had a live online chat about the Liberal Digital Canada Plan.  A transcription of the chat is available here.

The Liberal Digital Plan says the following about copyright:

Fair balance Between Creators and Consumers.

Digital technology offers many new opportunities, but enjoying content without compensating its creators shouldn’t be among them. At the same time, consumers should have freedom for personal use of digital content they rightfully possess. Liberals have worked to pass effective copyright legislation, including a private copying compensation fund instead of any new tax on consumers.

Is copyright part of the FTA or NAFTA?

February 19th, 2011

Does the Canada-US Free Trade Agreement (FTA) contain provisions dealing with copyright? According to Prof. Geist it does not. Does the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) require Canada, the U.S. and Mexico to protect copyright? According to Prof. Geist it does not. NAFTA doesn’t deal with copyright.

These revelations about the FTA and NAFTA were part of Prof. Geist’s prepared opening remarks to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on International Trade on the subject of CETA, the Canada EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement. Prof. Geist appeared before the Committee on February 15, 2011 to warn them against including copyright as part of a potential trade agreement with the EU.

EU highlights role of ISPs, damages and trade agreements in reducing IP infringements

January 9th, 2011

The EU just published a report reviewing the effectiveness of the EU Directive 2004/48/EC of the European Parliament and the Council of 29 April 2004 on the enforcement of intellectual property rights. That Directive, which recognized that effective means of enforcing intellectual property rights are essential for promoting innovation and creativity, harmonized the minimum means available  to right holders and public authorities for fighting infringements of intellectual property rights in the EU. It also established a general framework for exchanging information and administrative co-operation between national authorities and with the Commission.

Separating copyright fiction from facts about C-32’s TPM provisions

November 24th, 2010

Earlier this week Prof. Geist wrote an opinion piece in the Toronto Star in which he purported to separate “copyright facts from fiction”. His opinion piece, Separating copyright facts from fiction, followed by another blog post this week, The False Link Between Locks and Levies, are two in a series of blog posts and opinion pieces written by him recently that purport to expose as inaccurate statements made about Bill C-32 by various individuals and organizations. See: Responding to ACTRA: Group Calls C-32 a “Disaster” and Proposes Six Part Fix; Copyright Fear Mongering Hits a New High: Writers Groups Post Their C-32 Brief; In Search of A Compromise on Copyright; EU: ACTA Digital Lock Rules Don’t Cover Access Controls.

The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) -a summary of the final terms

October 11th, 2010

RCMP report details Canada’s serious counterfeiting and piracy problems

September 17th, 2010

The RCMP just published a report surveying the problems posed by counterfeiting and piracy in Canada. Some of the important findings of the report A National Intellectual Property Crime Threat Assessment, 2005 to 2008 are the following:

  • Traditionally viewed as being victimless, Intellectual Property (IP) crime has become a source of health and safety concern in Canada. Health, safety, and economic damages from the consumption and usage of counterfeit goods are being reported on an international scale. Victims of IP crime include, among others, people suffering from life threatening diseases who unknowingly use counterfeit medicines containing little or too many active ingredients, or toxins.