Manon Ress's blog

SCCR24: today, all but India agreed on a single text to move the broadcasting treaty forward

July 24, 2012 afternoon plenary: the broadcasting treaty text moved forward. All but India supported the Chair's text as the basis of future works. In their own words:

EGYPT: Thank you, Chair. The African Group ...
The African Group would support that the Chair's nonpaper be adopted as the Committee's working document, to guide our future deliberations on broadcasting. It's our further recommendation that this Committee makes a clear recommendation to the General Assembly on our plan towards hosting a Diplomatic Conference on broadcasting in 2014.

Time is running out at SCCR24 and there is a lot at stake

India like many other delegations (except the EU Commission and the US) has been a strong advocate for the treaty to faciltate access and sharing of accessible formats. There is a lot at stake.
According to the WHO page on the incidence of visual impairments in India:
285 million people are visually impaired worldwide: 39 million are blind and 246 have low vision.
About 90% of the world's visually impaired live in developing countries.

India has a particularly large population of blind persons:

A treaty for visually impaired persons is long overdue but the US has still not agreed on the "nature" of the text!

Like many readers, I am now an official fan of Zach Carter. Mr. Carter just wrote a timely and intelligent article regarding the SCCR24 and the treaty for the blind and visually impaired persons:"Obama Administration Blocks International Treaty To Benefit The Blind"

The Blind people want a treaty:

CCIA,EFF, IFLA, KEI, ISOC, CIS views on the broadcasting treaty July 23, 2012

Once again a diverse group of NGOS spoke clearly against the treaty for broadcasting organizations. To quote CCIA "While the world's governments can certainly create legal instruments with any language in them that they wish, surely granting copyright in objects that don't exist would be difficult to justify to the wider public". Well, the delegates are now back into informal sessions so the public in fact does not even know why they still work on more rights, (more road blocks) to solve signal piracy, already a crime I believe in most countries!

July 23, 2012. Broadcasting organizations (and MPA) views on why they need a treaty

July 23, 2012. Broadcasting organizations (and MPA) views why they need a treaty

I am not sure if the best film analogy here would be Groundhog Day or The Bridge on the River Kwai but the following NGOs are re-affirming that they need a treaty because:
1. there is a piracy problem that can be fixed by giving them more exclusive rights for 20 years
2. the Internet treaties trilogy: there is a WCT and a WPPT so there has to be a WBT. To be fair.

Governments views on progress on broadcasting treaty at WIPO SCCR24

July 23, 2012. The plenary at WIPO has started again briefly before lunch. While there is not much progress on a text about broadcasting protection there seems to be consensus among governments regarding the nature of the instrument: it has to be a treaty. No one seems to be talking about a soft recommendation for broadcasters!

Quick Notes from NGOs intervention from the floor during SCCR24

WBU: we look forward to the revision tomorrow and we will study carefully. We see ourselves as technical advisors and we are available today and tomorrow for consultation.

STM (publishers); we have been supportive. But framework should not undermine publishers ambition....a legal instrument should be limited where there is no existing has to be limited to the essential. Should also be mindful to respect flexibilities. Authorized entities can be trusted By all stakeholders. that could be provided if operationaly prepared and ....

WIPO SCCR24: TPMs, Contracts, new articles


Member States shall ensure that beneficiaries of the exception provided by Article C have the means to enjoy the exception where technological protection measures have been applied to a work.

SCCR 24: Focus is on "primary mission" of authorized entities

During the three hours of informal negotiations, I am told the discussions focused on among the definition, the first paragraph regarding "authorized entity"

[in SCCR23/7 Auhtorized entities]

means a governmental agency, a non-profit entity or non-profit organization that has as one of its activities to assist persons with print disabilities by providing them with services relating to education, training, adaptive reading, or information access needs, in accordance with national law.

WIPO SCCR24: still on "definitions" behind closed doors

The WIPO SCCR 24 delegates are still meeting behind closed doors (no NGOS and no streaming nor recording). I heard they are still talking about the definitions (see below) and that the 5pm plenary is delayed. Yesterday and this morning we heard quite a bit about "works" and "authorized entity". If they agreed on these maybe they are now arguing over the meaning of "reasonable price for developed countries" and "reasonable price for developing countries"

SCCR/23/7 ORIGINAL: English DATE: December 16, 2011


For the purposes of these provisions

Quick Update on WIPO SCCR 24 Meeting on The treaty for People with Disabilities

Today is day 5 of the WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights which for over 2 years has been discussing the first ever treaty that would involved a limitation to copyright, in these case to benefit blind people as well as people with other disabilities. It is day 2 of plenary discussions regarding the treaty for people with disabilities.

Zimbabwe: Mr. Chair transparency is key to everything

Late morning at WIPO SCCR 24 meeting regarding the treaty for people with disabilities.
The US is asking now to go into "informal" discussions.

WIPO SCCR24 What is an "authorized entity" and what is the fight about?

Today the discussion on the definition of "authorized entity" has started. It is one of the important and technical issues that could make a treaty good or bad, useful or ineffective.

An "authorized entity" or AE is the institution that provides the works in accessible format to the people with visual impairments who are the beneficiaries of the future treaty. Depending on how broad or narrow or inclusive v. restrictive the definition gets to be by the end of the negotiation, access is conditioned.

Some of the questions this morning:

The European Orphan Works Directive: a missed opportunity?

Earlier this month, the European Parliament and the European Commission released a new compromise text on orphan works.

The Compromise Text is available here:

KEI sees the text as a step backwards for access to knowledge. The proposed directive makes far too many compromises, is too limited in terms of the beneficiaries and uses of works, and creates complicated, burdensome and costly procedures and record keeping requirements.

Background on earlier EU consultations

Applauding WIPO Webcast and Video-on-Demand

Clearly WIPO could teach a few things to many agencies --other UN bodies but also for example the office of the US Trade Representatives-- regarding transparency and accessibility for all stakeholders.

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