No International Broadcast Treaty (Yet)
from the phew dept
For many years, there's been a push for a "broadcast treaty" that would provide a new kind of intellectual property right. It would be a "broadcast right." Basically, it would be like a copyright, giving broadcasters total control over content they broadcast (and how others can broadcast it) even if they don't own the copyright to that content. Where this gets quite problematic is where it conflicts with copyrights. If a broadcaster were to take something in the public domain and broadcast it -- they could then effectively control it with this "broadcast right" even if they don't have the copyright on it. That's problematic for many reasons -- and luckily there's been enough pushback on it that the plan has gone nowhere for years. We can add some more time to that as the latest plans for such a treaty have fallen through after the various delegates couldn't agree on what level of protection to give broadcasters. This isn't over, of course, but it's nice to see that the attention directed at this issue has had enough influence to keep it from passing.