U.S. at WIPO: Committed To Better Copyright Exceptions

The U.S. delegation to the World Intellectual Property Organization has just delivered a noteworthy statement on its commitment to addressing copyright exceptions for persons with print disabilities.  The statement includes:

the United States believes that the time has come for WIPO Members to work toward some form of international consensus on basic, necessary limitations and exceptions in copyright law for persons with print disabilities. This international consensus could take multiple forms, including a model law endorsed by the SCCR, a detailed Joint Recommendation to be adopted by the WIPO General Assemblies, and/or a multilateral treaty. The United States is open to discussing and exploring all these options.

Not only has the U.S. called for an international consensus, it has rejected claims that addressing exceptions would weaken copyright law:

We recognize that some in the international copyright community believe that any international consensus on substantive limitations and exceptions to copyright law would weaken international copyright law. The United States does not share that point of view. The United States is committed to both better exceptions in copyright law and better enforcement of copyright law. Indeed, as we work with countries to establish consensus on proper, basic exceptions within copyright law, we will ask countries to work with us to improve the enforcement of copyright. This is part and parcel of a balanced international system of intellectual property.

The Canadian delegation should speak to these issues shortly.


  1. The US wants to set the exceptions as well as the rules. No big surprise there.

  2. Will one of the exceptions…
    be for compilation CDs? 🙂

    Now, if this is made illegal under ACTA anyway… one hand giveth, the other taketh away.

  3. I remain resolutely of the opinion…
    … that copying any copyrighted work for the personal and private use of the person making the copy should be exempt from copyright infringement, notwithstanding that the person who is making the copy also have access to what they are copying from completely independently of the making of the copy (so that, for example, photocopying articles for one’s private use in a library would be fine, while downloading copyrighted content that you don’t have any other access to and had no permission to copy would not).