Thursday, September 14, 2006

Jukka Liedes must go

Jukka LiedesJukka Liedes, chairman of the WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights, has steamrollered over global opposition to recommend that the draft Broadcasting Treaty moves forward. Liedes ignored objections from Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Bolivia, Iran, South Africa and even the United States to claim to WIPO's General Assembly that "consensus" existed that a Diplomatic Conference should now be convened to negotiate a treaty.

Contrary to WIPO practice, Liedes has chaired meetings of the SCCR for the last decade. After rejecting the bogus "consensual" request for a Diplomatic Conference, the General Assembly should instruct the SCCR to choose a new chairman who will respect member states' wishes at future meetings of the committee.

Liedes claimed: "The Diplomatic Conference engenders friendship. Then many years later you see the people you have been fighting with, and it is like meeting your family. You hug and kiss! In the end there is a treaty adopted by consensus." Ars Technica replies: "If the people you have been fighting with turn out to be responsible for crippling fair use rights and access to public domain material, you'll probably feel like punching them in the face, no matter how many years have gone by."

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