Around the blogs. Here's a US thoroughbred in the making: ED Michigan IP Report: Intellectual Property Litigation News From The U.S. District Court For The Eastern District of Michigan. This weblog is a venture shared by the IPKat's friend David C. Berry (Professor of Law and Director, Graduate Program in Intellectual Property Law, Thomas M. Cooley Law School, right) and some of his students. Says David: "It has been an amazing experience (and unbelievably time consuming)!" That just about sums up the IP blogging experience. Keep it up, folk, says the Kat, you're doing fine! Meanwhile, congratulations to Afro-IP, the weblog focusing on IP law in the mysterious and tantalising continent of Africa. The blog's pet lion Afro Leo has just announced his 500th email subscriber.
"... the project will be considering the privacy implications of emerging technologies such as new identification and surveillance technologies, biometrics, on-the-spot DNA sequencing and technologies for human enhancement.You can visit the Prescient website here.
"New technologies can often be used in a way that undermines the right to privacy because they facilitate the collection, storage, processing and combination of personal data by security agencies and businesses," says Michael Friedewald, head of the ICT research unit at the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research (ISI) and co-ordinator of the project. "We have seen that with the rise of social networking websites such as Facebook, MySpace and Bebo. They have led to a dramatic increase in the amount of personal information available online, which is routinely misappropriated for identity theft or other fraudulent purposes. We know that employers also mine these sites in order to vet prospective employees.
RFID and biometrics can also be used in ways invidious to our privacy.
The use of these new technologies is changing the ways in which we understand privacy and data protection. It is not sufficient to look at privacy as only a legal or human right. We need to reconceptualise privacy in ethical, social, cultural and other dimensions and to see how these different conceptualisations impact each other and how they can be bridged. We think part of the solution is much wider use of privacy and ethical impact assessments before new technologies or projects involving personal data are undertaken".
The Strategic Advisory Board for Intellectual Property Policy (SABIP) in the UK organised a Moral Rights event last month (reported by the IPKat here). At that event a speech was delivered by Intellectual Property Minister David Lammy MP. This might be his last serious pronouncement on the subject of IP before the forthcoming General Election, so be sure to watch it here. Supporting acts from William McGrath, Anne Latournerie and Makeen Makeen are also available for delectation. As part of an ACTA-style commitment to keeping things secret and/or off the record, SABIP writes:
"we are working on a report of proceedings which will be written under Chatham House Rules - comments will not be attributed to individuals or report in a way that individuals can be identified [what can people say about authors' moral rights that requires that their identities can't be traced, for goodness' sake?].