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Broadcast Treaty very very bad


Public hearing on Broadcast Treaty in DC, May 9
The US Patent and Trademark Office is holding public hearings on May 9 to 
discuss the US position on the WIPO Broadcast Treaty -- you can attend and 
even speak.

The Broadcast Treaty is a proposal to let broadcasters (and "webcasters" 
people who host files and make them available to the Internet) claim a 
copyright to the stuff that they transmit. Broadcasters get this special 
right even if the stuff they're sending around is in the public domain, or 
Creative Commons licensed, or not copyrightable (like CSPAN's broadcasts 
Congress). Fair use doesn't apply to this right.

What this means is that a handful of corporations are going to be able to 
claim copyrights over billions of works they didn't create -- works that 
they've done nothing to improve, works they've done nothing for except 
electromagnetically modulating them.

What this means is that these corporations are going to be able to trump 
rights of actual creators. If you put a Creative Commons license on your 
video that allows your fans to share it, the "broadcaster" -- or the 
who transmits it over the Web -- can override your wishes and tell your 
that they can't.

This is a proposed UN treaty, and the US position on it keeps wavering. 
tech sector recently woke up and told the government off for selling them 
out in Geneva, critically wounding the Treaty's prospects. With a little 
help, it could die altogether.

    Persons wishing to attend and observe or participate in the roundtable 
are required to submit requests to observe the roundtable or participate, 
preferably by electronic mail through the Internet to sking@loc.gov. 
Alternatively, you may submit requests by facsimile at 202–707–8366 or via 
regular mail to: U.S. Copyright Office, Copyright GC/I&R, P.O. Box 70400, 
Southwest Station, Washington, DC 20024, marked to the attention of Simone 
King. Please be aware that delivery of mail (U.S. Postal Service and 
carrier) sent to the U.S. Copyright Office is subject to delay. Therefore, 
it is strongly suggested that any request to observe or participate be 
via e–mail or fax. Requests to observe the roundtable or to participate as 
member of the roundtable must indicate the following information:

    1. The name of the person, including whether it is your intention to 
observe the roundtable or to participate as a member of the roundtable;

    2. The organization or organizations represented by that person, if 

    3. Contact information (address, telephone, and e–mail);

    4. Information on the specific focus or interest of the observer or 
participant (or his or her organization) and any questions or issues you 
would like to raise.

    The deadline for receipt of requests to observe or participate in the 
roundtable is 5:00 p.m. on Friday, May 4, 2007. If we receive so many 
requests that we reach the room’s capacity, attendance will be granted in 
the order the requests were received.

Link (Thanks, Dan!)

See also:
US Senate: Broadcast Treaty subverts copyright!
WIPO Broadcast Treaty: consolidated three-day notes
UN cooking podcast-killing treaty
URGENT: Podcasters act now to stop anti-podcasting UN treaty!
America to US gov't: kill the Broadcast Treaty!
US copyright head: world "totally rejects" webcasting restrictions
Secret WIPO memo: rich countries to kill Broadcast Treaty, Development 
WIPO wants to give webcasters the right to steal from public domain, 
Creative Commons and GPL
WIPO anti-podcasting treaty refuses to die
European podcasters to WIPO: Stay away from us!
Copyright treaty laid bare: watch your governments make sausage!
Financial Times: WIPO's webcaster treaty is a disaster
Podcasting saved from the UN -- for now
Tech companies tell WIPO: we don't want your "protection"

posted by Cory Doctorow at 09:51:41 AM permalink | blogs' comments

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