Following Wednesday’s jam-packed day of presentations and side-events, you could feel a drop in energy in the chamber today as a number of reports were presented.
IPA’s delegation started the day with two early morning meetings with the Canadian and the Thai delegations, both of which are dealing with reviews of copyright. Later, but still before the main plenary, an IPA delegation met with the African Group where we invited all delegates to participate in our 2ndRegional Seminar on African Publishing which will take place in Nairobi on 14-15 June. We were also able to speak with the members of the African Group about the European Copyright Directive and to share with them the publishers’ position on the current directions of the debates.
When we finally made it to the plenary hall, Thursday’s agenda opened with Professor Suttonpresenting his Background Paper on Archives and Copyrightwhere he noted the copyright implications of a number of activities that may be carried out by archives and how collections may be split among a variety of countries with different copyright regimes, creating a cross-border impact.
The next 3 presentations were a series of typologies on Libraries, Museums and Educational and Research Activities. If you don’t know what typologies are then you aren’t on your own. Many delegations and NGOs weren’t entirely sure what to expect from this process. In the end, the typologies present the range of exceptions and limitations in the WIPO Member States that relate to different acts that may be carried out by users. This builds up a picture of the types of laws that already exist and shows the similarities and divergences in approach in different WIPO Member States. The three reports are worth reading and can be accessed at these links:
Professor Daniel Seng - Copyright Limitations and Exceptions for Educational and Research Activities: Typology Analysis
Dr Yaniv Benhamou - Copyright Limitations and Exceptions for Museums: Typology Analysis
The typology presentations were split by the lunchtime side event organised by the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA) featuring Angela Mills Wade of the European Publishers Council, Dr Ole Jani of the law firm CMS, Dr Eleonora Rosati of the University of Southampton and Anne le Morvan of the French Ministry of Culture. These speakers spoke about the development of a press publishers’ neighbouring right within the European Union and its installation in the recent Copyright Directive. They argued that this was essential in an age when online platforms are becoming news distributors and attracting advertising on the back of press publishers’ content. A number of speakers presented this as a re-balancing of negotiating positions to ensure that those who create are able to be paid by those that want to distribute them. Le Morvan emphasized the French Government’s support for this right in the EU discussions, and stressed that when there is value generated by creation then there should also be remuneration.
The temperature rose slightly towards the end of the session when questions came from the floor and the press publishers right was referred to as a tax (during the EU Copyright Directive discussions opponents to the provision called it a link-tax) and press publishers were criticised for allegedly harvesting readers’ data. Angela Mills Wade calmly noted that the new right is not a tax in any sense of the word, and that the EU has a General Data Protection Regulation empowering citizens to control how their data is used, unlike many other territories.
A further 2 typology presentations later and the exceptions and limitations agenda items were brought to a close before the delegates joined a celebration of the Republic of Cabo Verde becoming the 100thContracting Party to the WIPO Internet Treaties.