Wednesday, November 05, 2008

The Obama Effect on IP

IP-Watch has a good analysis of the likely direction of the Obama administration here. IP-Watch also speculates on some Obama appointments here.

Although a Democratic administration is likely to be very sympathetic to the wishes of IP owners and rightly so, there is reason to hope that the Obama administration will take a more nuanced approach than we've seen in the past as a result of such factors as:
  • Obama's commitment to affordable health care
  • Obama's commitment to improving child education in order to improve competitiveness
  • Obama's experience as an academic
  • the very Internet savvy campaign he ran
  • the need to balance traditional Democrat protectionist instincts with the pressing need to to restore America's lead in high tech R&D and even manufacturing
  • the need for the USA to regain respect internationally by informed policy leadership and not by brute force trade hegemony
  • the need to satisfy likely great expectations from Africa and developing countries in other regions
  • more intellectual rigor and honesty in separating bogus terrorism and exaggerated counterfeiting issues from real trade and IP issues.
It's worth noting that Bill Clinton's IP point man, Bruce Lehman, has stated that the DMCA "didn't work out very well" under the last Democratic administration. Hopefully, Bruce's soul searching and public confessions will impart valuable wisdom to the new Democratic White House, whether or not he has part to play in it.

As I say, and without being political, there is now indeed plenty of reason to hope.


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