Wednesday, January 17, 2007

WIPO Broadcasting Treaty - Update Janaury 17, 2006

The WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights (SCCR) is holding its First Special Session from January 17 to 19, 2007.

The first day apparently was filled with the sounds of silence as delegates from many countries and NGO's gathered in Geneva. Little happened. The Chair - Mr. Liedes - finally handed out some documents.

According to William New of IP-Watch:
Liedes doled out his non-papers sparingly during the day only when it was clear member governments were not going to proffer their own, he said. “There is no master plan … no mandate on what to do,” Liedes said afterward. He said he decided to put forward “something that reflects my understanding” of positions.
It's not clear why delegates are convening in Geneva to be handed brief documents that could presumably have seen sent out earlier by e-mail. Delegations need time to analyze and need instructions.

IP-Watch has a detailed report on today's events, including the text of the documents.

It's worth recalling that the monumental Berne Convention went from being a glint in someone's eye to fruition in three years from 1883 to 1886 when the telegraph was high technology and steam ships were still fairly new technology. This current effort concerning a broadcasting treaty has been going in earnest since about 2000 and traces back even further - about 8 or 9 years.

There's a lesson to be learned here. But I'm not quite sure yet what it is.


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