Wikileaks Cables Provide Global Insights on Intellectual Property Issues

My posting on the Wikileaks Canadian copyright cables have generated considerable attention, but there have also been some very notable intellectual property related cables discovered from other countries. They include:

  • numerous cables involving pharmaceutical drugs and trade pressures. Jamie Love has an excellent article on those cables.
  • a cable from Australia that reveals that the MPAA was behind the iiNet copyright lawsuit. The U.S. cable indicated that the information was intended to be kept secret.
  • a cable from Tunisia indicating that Microsoft assisted the former regime on criminal issues in an effort to get the government to drop a policy favouring open source software. Jamie Love has annotated the dozens of cables involving open source software.
  • nearly 1,000 cables referencing the USTR Special 301 process, which leads to many countries being placed on an IP watch list.
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  1. Did you hear about …
    It’s interesting that the ‘conspiracy theory’ aficionados were not so wrong after all, but I wonder if it will really make any difference to power broker behaviour.

    It will take a critical mass of … well criticism to bring change. So lets try not to become jaded by the constant stream of back-room revelations and keep pressure on where it is needed.

  2. The good, the bad, and the ugly.
    What would be good is if most countries of the world had similar laws, shared technology, and thus allow an easier time for countries to cooperate.

    What’s bad is that the US is trying to do that with laws that serve mostly corporate interests and not for the public good. Driving up drug costs is most certainly not to the public’s well being and yet the US does very little to lower costs internally.

    Also, while patents are a good thing the US has gone way, way too far in both duration and scope and is blocking innovation more often than driving it forward. There seems to be very little examination of patents, especially in software, which magnifies the problem. It’s no wonder that the big tech companies are involved in many, many lawsuits thanks to the government.

    The ugly part is that the US seeks to export this flawed mess, which is slowly getting worse, to other countries? When one has a 14+ trillion debt that is a sign that someone has seriously messed up over an extended period of time. Dems and Repubs–both are responsible thanks to the dual party system that makes it easy for corps to buy off members on both sides.

    Seriously, I’ve heard little being done to seriously fix their internal mess. They need to do that before pushing their flawed patent and copyright system to other countries. Quite frankly, if the rest of the world said ‘screw you’ to the US they would be in some deep, deep trouble. Not quickly, no, but perhaps it would force some of those politicos to face reality and focus on fixing their country instead of accepting payoffs from professional lobbyists (the first things that need to go).

  3. Yikes, that is a long way down …
    There was an interesting piece on US public radio yesterday about a lost opportunity of self reflection post 9/11. The speaker pointed to two similar major ‘shocks’ to the USA collective consciousness; the civil war & pearl harbour. In both those cases the country came eventually together and was better for it afterwards. In contrast, the last decade has seen a further disintegration and polarization of politics & the economy.

    I think the debt ceiling thing was a bit of a wake up call for some, but there is a lot of house cleaning needed to clean up that mess. And yes, we are better off here in Canada but need the same introspection to keep us away from the ledge.

  4. Devil's Advocate says:

    That’s one great link (Falkvinge)!