For the half-year to 31 December 2014, the IPKat's regular team is supplemented by contributions from guest bloggers Rebecca Gulbul, Lucas Michels and Marie-Andrée Weiss.

Regular round-ups of the previous week's blogposts are kindly compiled by Alberto Bellan.

Monday, 17 May 2010

Monday miscellany

The IPKat has heard from his friend Kay Chapman, from the Central Advisory Service on Intellectual Property (home page here, blog here). This service assists the agricultural research centres of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) with their intellectual property management issues for development purposes and she writes:

"One of our projects is called the National Partners Initiative (NPI) which is a community of practice of IP practitioners from developing countries. It was launched in 2007 and now has around 45 members from Africa, Asia and Latin America. Members are from a wide range of backgrounds, including scientists, lawyers and academics. From 13 to 19 June we will be holding our annual meeting in Washington DC. The meeting will be a combination of roundtable discussions, case studies and 'open space' discussions. It's a fascinating group with a wide range of IP experiences (and of course challenges) of managing IP in the context of agricultural development. ... Many members have "found" themselves thrown into the field of IP management at their research institution and this community of practice has been a source of professional support".
The Kat can't be at this meeting himself, though he'd very much have liked to do so, since it looks like the sort of positive contribution that the IP community can make to agricultural development where it is most needed. He hopes to get news of how the meeting goes, though, and looks forward to keeping his readers informed.


Soccer World Cup Competition. Oh dear, says the IPKat, this competition is five days old but the Kats still haven't received any entries. This is an almost unprecedented state of affairs and we very much hope that it's a purely temporary one. Just to remind you, the prize is a copy of Working Within the Boundaries of Intellectual Property: Innovation Policy For The Knowledge Society, edited by Rochelle C. Dreyfuss, Diane L. Zimmerman and Harry First (details here) and the closing date is a very generous 30 June.


The WIPO Logo competition is faring rather better (click here for details) -- the Kats have received a good crop of entries already and the prize is a one-year electronic subscription to the Journal of Intellectual Property Law & Practice (JIPLP), edited by IPKat team blogger Jeremy and with a fellow Kat, Birgit, on its Editorial Panel. You can read about JIPLP here and peruse its very own blog here. Closing date for entries: 30 May.


On the subject of football, let's spare a thought for Lord Triesman. He was the United Kingdom's first Minister for Innovation, back in 2007 (before Baroness Morgan and then David Lammy). The IPKat notes with sorrow that he has been in the news again, but not for the best of reasons (see here for the sad story). The new Minister, David Willetts, is deemed to be the Minister for Universities and Science. He is reputed to have two brains which, Merpel restrains herself from adding, is also reputed by some to be more than those of the three previous incumbents combined.


For your amusement. Graham Titley (Subject Librarian and Copyright Advisor to the Charles Seale Hayne Library, University of Plymouth) has drawn the IPKat's attention to an 8 April article in The Economist, "Copyright and wrong: why the rules on copyright need to return to their roots", which you can enjoy here together with the 62 comments added by some passionate readers. Thanks, Graham! By the way, the article concludes
"A return to the 28-year copyrights of the Statute of Anne would be in many ways arbitrary, but not unreasonable. If there is a case for longer terms, they should be on a renewal basis, so that content is not locked up automatically. The value society places on creativity means that fair use needs to be expanded and inadvertent infringement should be minimally penalised. None of this should get in the way of the enforcement of copyright, which remains a vital tool in the encouragement of learning. But tools are not ends in themselves".

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