|It's Friday, I'm in Love!|
For the 3 (or perhaps fewer) Afro-IP readers who are not also following the IPKat, this posting regarding a very recent decision in the Court of Justice of the European Union is particularly worth noting. The issue is whether a webpage, by providing a link to copyrighted material, may be infringing the copyright. In short, the answer is "no" provided that the link does not enable a "new" audience to view the copyrighted material. A "new" audience would be one that did not have access to the original content - for example, non-subscribers to a subscription-only journal. This is a critically important decision (which, this Leo thinks, comes to the perfect conclusion). To the extent that any similar cases are brought in African jurisdictions, it is greatly hoped that the courts will look to this CJEU decision for guidance.
It is difficult to know whether to cheer or to despair this news reported at IP Watch, but the Office of the US Trade Representative has released it's list of Notorious Markets, i.e., countries and markets that are Notorious for violation of IP rights, particularly in marketing pirated and counterfeit goods. Not a single African country or African market was mentioned in the list. So, either Africa is doing so well in combatting counterfeit/pirated goods that it is not a Notorious Market, or Africa is so far from the radar of the United States that
Finally, again from the IPKat, we learn here of progress toward a EU directive on Collective Management of Copyright-related rights. The best part about this report is one of the reasons underpinning the directive: "The functioning of some collective management organisations has raised concerns as to their transparency, governance and the handling of revenues collected on behalf of right-holders." It's just nice to know that the same issues that plague CMOs in Africa (see here and here, for example) are also a problem in Europe! It is said that misery loves company (although hopefully not for our dear readers on Valentine's Day).