Improved access to copyright-protected content for the blind and other persons with visual or print disabilities (VIPs) was the focus of an international training course co-organized by the United States Copyright Office and WIPO in Washington from March 8 to 12, 2010. The International Training Program for Developing Countries and Countries in Transition on Emerging Issues in Copyright and Related Rights and Issues Pertaining to Blind and Visually Impaired Persons, brought together policy-makers and experts from 28 countries.
WIPO Director General Francis Gurry wrapped up an official visit to Japan from March 1 to March 5, 2010, during which he met a number of high level Government representatives, including Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Masayuki Naoshima, and Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Koichi Takemasa, as well as Japan Patent Office (JPO) Commissioner Tetsuhiro Hosono.
International patent filings under WIPO’s Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) fell by 4.5% in 2009 with sharper than average declines experienced by some industrialized countries and growth in a number of East Asian countries. Provisional data indicates that 155,900 (annex 1) international patent applications were filed in 2009 as compared to the nearly 164,000 applications filed in 2008.
A workshop hosted by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) from February 2 to 5, 2010, brought together over 180 persons from some 32 organizations to promote awareness about accessibility for people with disabilities and to encourage webmasters within the United Nations system and other organizations to implement principles of accessibility in their daily work.
The importance of intellectual property (IP) in promoting innovation and boosting national economic development in Viet Nam topped discussions between Viet Nam’s President Nguyen Minh Triet and WIPO Director General Francis Gurry in Hanoi this week. Mr. Gurry pledged the Organization’s continuing support in further enhancing Viet Nam’s national IP capacity to innovate and achieve sustained economic growth.
A Florida-based company (“Federated Institute for Patent and Trademark Registry”) was this month found to have violated the state's Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act by sending out by mass mail misleading “invoices” to patent and trademark applicants—including users of WIPO’s Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) which facilitates the process of seeking international patent protection.
WIPO’s top copyright negotiating forum has agreed to move forward with discussions that could lead to better access to copyright-protected works by the blind, visually impaired (VIP) and other reading-disabled persons. The Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights (SCCR), meeting from December 14 to 18, 2009, decided to accelerate the work on copyright exceptions and limitations for the benefit of persons with reading disabilities.
WIPO Director General Francis Gurry participated on December 16, 2009 in a series of events related to international climate talks in Copenhagen and outlined how WIPO can contribute to international efforts to mitigate climate change. Mr. Gurry underlined that policies that stimulate the creation and diffusion of technology are key elements in developing an effective and practical global response to the threats posed by climate change. He said judicious use of the intellectual property (IP) system can make a positive contribution in crafting the many and diverse technological solutions needed to attenuate the impacts of climate change.
The Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), Mr. Francis Gurry, welcomed on December 14, 2009 the ratification by the European Union (EU) of the so-called “Internet Treaties” - the WIPO Copyright Treaty (WCT) and the WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty (WPPT) - which establish the basic standards of protection for copyright and related rights in the digital environment.
WIPO’s Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual Property and Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore (IGC) reviewed draft provisions for the protection of traditional cultural expressions (TCEs) and traditional knowledge (TK), and considered options for future work on intellectual property (IP) and genetic resources at a meeting from December 7 to 11, 2009, paving the way for mandated negotiations in 2010.