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October 18, 2005

Call for Stern Measures to Limit Patents and Copyrights

An international group of scientists, academics and artists has called for stern measures to restrict patents and copyrights, expressing concern that the increase of intellectual property (IP) protection is restraining the spread of knowledge and creativity. The Royal Society of Arts, London has developed a charter on IP that calls for an automatic presumption against producing new protection or widening existing rules. According to the charter, patents and copyrights should not be applied to business processes, computer code, abstract data or scientific theories. Sir John Sulston, who headed the centre at Cambridge University that helped map the human genome, is one of the signatories. According to the project supporters, the collaborative nature of such projects illustrates the potential for scientific inventions without authoritative IP protection. Some of the other signatories include William Neal Reynolds, professor of Law at Duke Law School, Gilberto Gil, musician and Culture Minister of Brazil, and Vandana Shiva, Director of India’s Research Foundation for Science Technology and Ecology. 10/18/05

Posted by P. Kaufman at October 18, 2005 9:10 AM