Tuesday, October 12, 2010 4:26 pm | By Katerina Bricker
In Tokyo last week, 37 countries met to discuss the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) The agreement would increase efforts against theft of intellectual property, support high enforcement standards against piracy, and also accompany existing rules that are already in effect under the auspices of the World Trade Organization.The finalized document is 24 pages long and if you click HERE, you can read it in its entirety.
Strong intellectual property enforcement is key to long-term economic growth and prosperity. Intellectual property rights can boost trade and foreign investment dramatically, but first, global piracy and counterfeiting must be stopped or significantly reduced for the economies of developed and developing nations to thrive. U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk stated, “This text reflects tremendous progress in the fight against counterfeiting and piracy – a global crime wave that robs workers in the United States and around the world of good-paying jobs and exposes consumers to dangerous products.”
ACTA does not provide governments with every answer on how to tackle IP infringement, but it does help with the very important job of finding solutions to this global problem. This is a milestone in the fight to protect intellectual property rights worldwide reached by 37 other countries including the United States, the 27 EU member states, Japan, Switzerland, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, Singapore, Mexico, and Morocco. While this agreement does not include some of the biggest IP offenders, including China, this is a step in the right direction.
Decreasing Piracy Stimulates Economy
Wednesday, September 22, 2010 4:24 pm | By Katerina Bricker
A recent study released by the Business Software Alliance (BSA) solidifies the argument that reducing software piracy boosts economic growth. The study included 42 countries which own 93 percent of the world’s PC software currently in use. Click HERE to view the original pdf file of BSA’s publication. You can also click HERE for the study in brief.
Stopping Digital Parasites
Wednesday, September 22, 2010 10:04 am | By Kelsey Zahourek
This week Senator Leahy (D-VT) introduced the “Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act.” I applaud Senator Leahy and the bills co-sponsors, Senators Evan Bayh, Richard Durbin, Orrin Hatch, Amy Klobuchar, Herb Kohl, Charles Schumer, Arlen Specter, George Voinovich, and Sheldon Whitehouse for taking a much needed step to ensure that websites and domain names which facilitate and profit from the illegal distribution of intellectual property are shut down before any further infringement can take place.
American industries that rely on intellectual property rights employ over 18 million people and account for over $5 trillion of U.S. gross domestic product. The entertainment industry is perhaps the most visible victim of online infringement through illegal music downloads and video streaming, but there are other industries, including pharmaceuticals, machinery, and clothing that rely on the protection of intellectual property rights in order to not only thrive, but survive.
In a statement, Senator Hatch elaborated on the need for such legislative action:
“In today’s global economy the internet has become the glue of international commerce –- connecting consumers with a wide array of products and services worldwide. But it’s also become a tool for online thieves to sell counterfeit and pirated goods, making hundreds of millions of dollars off of stolen American intellectual property.”
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