EFF Wants You to Help Stop Broadcasting Treaty Flip-Flop

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) wants to mobilize businesses, public interest groups, and creative industry representatives to stand up against what it sees as over-broad protection of broadcast material. The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) has been debating a treaty that could severly inhibit digital devices like DVR’s and grant broadcasters and cablecasters copyright-like rights over everything they transmit. A draft version of the Broadcasting Treaty is on the fast track and they want your help to stop it.

On June 18-22, WIPO’s Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights (SCCR) will be holding a special session to determine whether there’s enough agreement on this new draft to go forward with an already-scheduled inter-governmental Diplomatic Conference in November, at which the new draft could become international law.

EFF wants you to help convince the US WIPO delegation not to support this draft at the June meeting. Particularly if one or more of your senators is a member of the Judiciary Committee, which has oversight over US intellectual property policy. If you want to voice your opinion, EFF has a fillable form here.


IP Kat Blogger Makes A Move

Newpic_2The Human Law Mediation blog reports that IP Kat blogger, Jeremy Phillips is joining the UK law firm Olswang. Jeremy Phillips is the author of the IP Kat blog. The press release states that:

“Jeremy worked as an academic at several universities, was the founder of Trademark World, Patent World, Copyright World and Managing Intellectual Property magazines, and has been the Editor of the European Trade Mark Reports and the Journal of Intellectual Property Law and Practice since 1996 and 2005 respectively. Jeremy is currently the Research Director and a Council Member of the Intellectual Property Institute and a visiting professor to the World Intellectual Property Organization. He also launched IPKat, the highly regarded IP blog.”


Gene-Chip Company Moves to Iceland To Circumvent IP Laws; Now Headed For an IPO

Earlier, NimbleGen Systems Inc. fled to Iceland in 2002 in order to circumvent U.S. patents controlled by Santa Clara, Calif.-based Affymetrix Inc. that were blocking NimbleGen’s ability to market its gene chips in the U.S. Affymetrix hadn’t applied for patent protection in Iceland so NimbleGen moved there to set up shop for making and using the gene chips offshore. Basically, NimbleGen receives samples from patent-protected countries and ship back only the results (data) from the chip analysis.

After a court decision requiring competitor Illumina to pay about $16.7 million in damages to Affymetrix for infringing on five patents, Affymetrix has changed it’s business model and has now agreed to license its technology to NimbleGen. NimbleGen now hopes to cash in on the gene chip market, which could reach $900 million by 2012.

NimbleGen filed with federal securities regulators in March to raise as much as $75 million through an IPO.


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