IP Update Conference: some comments

Speaking first at the CLT Intellectual Property Law Conference this morning, Trevor Coook (Bird & Bird) opened with a review of global developments. He mentioned that the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) currently seemed a good deal happier than it had in the past, and also that WIPO's figures for international filings were somewhat down [Could these two statements be in some way related? Merpel wonders]. He reviewed the activities of the various Standing Committees, as well as the current status of the Development Agenda, which appears to permeate so many areas of WIPO's work; the Development Agenda has moved beyond the point of being a talking shop, as tasks are being set for specific action.

The World Trade Organization's TRIPS Agreement, Trevor reminded the audience, now set the basic international norms for IP law as well as establishing an effective means ("with teeth") of resolving disputes when TRIPS members accused one another of failing to comply with the treaty's norms. He detailed both the manner in which the US-China copyright dispute of 10 April 2007 was adjudicated, and its (aftermath) and the "teeth" -- cross-retaliation by countries injured by breach of WTO rules by infringing IP rights from the countries in breach (Brazil's retaliation in respect of US cotton subsidies being a case in point).

Next to speak was Liz Coleman (Patents Directorate, Intellectual Property Office), who picked two topics on which to focus -- the patent prosecution highway (PPH) and the activities of the Strategic Advisory Board for Intellectual Property (SABIP). The PPH, essentially a set of bilateral arrangements between national/regional patent offices initiated by the offices of the US and Japan, now covers 14 countries [adds Merpel, it's so good to hear the words 'Japan' and 'pilot' associated with something so much more positive than Kamikaze ...]. Liz also displayed this lovely figure to illustrate the current state of full implementation, pilot projects and proposed highways.
Moving on to SABIP, Liz described the need for research-based evidence on which to build IP policy, reviewing its current programme of funded research as well as the points revealed in the research results released so far (see SABIP's website for details). Following some bright and breezy questions and answers, we all went off for coffee ...
IP Update Conference: some comments IP Update Conference: some comments Reviewed by Jeremy on Thursday, January 28, 2010 Rating: 5


  1. I'm getting pretty sick of the silly interjections you put into almost all your posts. Merpel's reference here to Kamikaze just because the word 'pilot' appears in reference to Japan really isn't funny, IMHO.

  2. Anonymous: I'm sorry you don't like the interjections. They actually serve a useful didactic function, in that they enable the reader the better to remember the more serious content which surrounds them.

    I'm not however unsympathetic: as a student I didn't like many of the jokes my lecturers inserted into their lectures -- though they too served much the same didactic function.

  3. I don't have a problem with the interjections as such, but I do think this one is more than a little off-colour

  4. I had a pretty good idea what the 3 comments where about before even opening them. I'd have to agree, most of the interjections are mildly amusing - this one misses the mark by some way. Maybe it should just be edited out?

  5. The less mentioned about suicide attacks the better, IMHO.

  6. Suitably chastened, Merpel assures me that she promises to say no more about S****** a******

  7. Hey, don't blame Jeremy - it was Merpel who said it. Merpel - *I* thought it was funny.


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