USPTO to double number of patent examiners
The IPKat says more power to the US Patent Office – so long as the patent fees don’t double to pay the new examiners’ salaries.
Is WIPO harming developing countries?
The Financial Times reports that Consumers International, an NGO, is claiming that developing countries are suffering as a result of implementing more stringent copyright laws than their international obligations demand. In particular, Consumers International alleges that the developing countries are being given bad advice by WIPO. This advice is allegedly being re-enforced by misleading WIPO model laws which include clauses that go further than countries’ international obligations and which fail to include permitted flexibilities and exemptions from protection. The problem is said to be particularly acute in the field of exemptions for educational use. According to CI:
“As a result, copyrighted educational materials in these countries are expensive and consumers are being priced out of access to knowledge.”The IPKat says that these are serious charged indeed. He hopes that WIPO will make it crystal clear to all countries (including those who do not necessarily have the funds for expert legal counsel in the field of copyright) which of its policy statements correspond to legal obligations and which are recommendations only.