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[FYI] Global Business Dialogue for Electronic Commerce (GBDe)


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July 8, 1999

          Global Business Dialogue for Electronic Commerce (GBDe)

 The GBDe is a world-wide private sector initiative to facilitate
 development of e-commerce by proposing solutions to remove barriers
 to it. We, at Fujitsu Limited, are committed to working with business
 and other leaders on this important initiative. For more details
 about the GBDe and its activities, please visit http://www.gbde.org/ 

 The Intellectual Property Protection Issue Group consists of a
 chairperson and two regional spokespersons. Currently, the
 chairperson is Mr. Michio Naruto, Vice Chairman, Fujitsu Limited. Mr.
 Eric Koenig, Senior Federal Government Affairs Manager and Senior
 Corporate Attorney, Microsoft Corporation, is the spokesperson for
 Americas. Ms. Anne Joseph, Legal Director, Reed Elsevier (UK)
 Limited, is the spokesperson for Europe/Africa. 

Dear Colleagues:

I am pleased as IPR Issue Group Chair that our group has successfully
come to an agreement on the final version of the Conference Brief at
the Sherpa Meeting in Paris as a result of an internal meeting among
issue manager and two contact point persons held prior to the
discussions in the Sherpa Meeting on June 29.

Let me take this opportunity to express my great appreciation for all
the contributions you have provided to our paper. We will work from
now to make necessary adjustments to comply with the Secretariat's
requirements for the Paris Conference in September, including
coordination with other issue papers. We will post that version as
soon as it is ready.


                                       June 29, 1999 

1. Importance of Intellectual Property Protection 

The Global Business Dialogue on Electronic Commerce (GBDe) supports
strong intellectual property rights protection for works made
available over digital networks, while promoting the lawful use of
such works by consumers.

For content providers and users both, the value of electronic
environment depends in part upon the content that is made available
upon international digital networks. Growth in attractive content,
stimulated by adequate intellectual property protection, will in turn
stimulate the growth of electronic commerce and the infrastructure
needed to sustain it.

Inadequate and ineffective protection of intellectual property in the
networked environment will not only stifle the full potential of
electronic commerce, but will also distort trade in works of
authorship in non-networked markets.

2. Need for Intellectual Property Enforcement

Electronic commerce will not develop to its fullest potential until
problems with enforcement of copyright laws are resolved.

Accordingly, the GBDe encourages governments to: (a) provide
rightholders with effective and convenient means of pursuing copyright
enforcement actions in each jurisdiction where infringement occurs;
(b) encourage the improvement of judicial proceedings and remedies
against copyright infringement in all countries, in order to achieve
effective enforcement and deter infringement; and (c) promote a
copyright awareness program among public, industrial and educational
organizations to educate users on the importance of copyright
protection and compliance with copyright laws, which together foster
creative activities.

3. Prompt, Faithful Ratification of WIPO Treaties

The GBDe encourages governments to ratify and implement the WIPO
Copyright Treaty and WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty promptly
and faithfully.

These treaties rightly encourage the establishment and maintenance of
legal regimes that give copyright and neighbouring right owners the
ability to authorize or prohibit the use of their works or phonograms,
including their communication through digital media, and effective
means through which to enforce such rights. 

As part of treaty implementation, appropriate legal frameworks should
be enacted for effective technological protection measures.

Legislation should prohibit harmful circumvention related activities
by regulating both conduct and devices, while providing appropriate
exceptions, such as those set forth in the legislation recently
enacted in the U.S., that would maintain the overall balance between
rightholders and users.

4. Promotion of Technological Innovation

The GBDe supports further development of technology to protect
effectively the interests of all parties involved in electronic
commerce, particularly to enable copyright rightholders to attain the
fullest enforcement of their rights.

While ensuring full and effective copyright enforcement, governments
should avoid taking legislative measures that impede the innovation of

The GBDe believes that effective technologies are most efficiently
developed through private sector initiatives and any standards which
are developed should reflect a broad based industry consensus.

5. Workable Liability Rules

To the extent necessary to promote legal certainty for service
providers, the GBDe encourages adoption of the principles on
service-provider liability agreed among rightholders and service
providers as reflected in the recently enacted U.S. legislation. These
principles recognise the common stake of rightholders and service
providers in ridding the electronic marketplace of infringing

6. Importance of WTO TRIPs Agreement

The GBDe attaches great importance to the WTO Trade-Related Aspects of
Intellectual Property Rights Agreement (TRIPs) and calls on all WTO
member countries to implement and enforce this agreement fully and

Adequate and effective intellectual property protection and its
enforcement are the third pillar of the WTO, along with liberalized
trade in goods and services.

Governments should promptly implement all of their TRIPs obligations.
Countries seeking accession to WTO should be encouraged to bring their
enforcement regimes into compliance with WTO TRIPs standards.

7. Domain Names

The GBDe supports the recent WIPO recommendations to ICANN regarding
domain names, and encourages prompt ICANN implementation of these

8. Importance of Harmonizing Intellectual Property Protection

The GBDe looks to governments to bring new impetus to harmonizing
intellectual property protections world-wide.

Harmonization and implementation should be targeted not only upon the
online electronic environment, but also the illegitimate reproduction,
distribution and importation of protected materials

In this regard, governments should ratify and fulfil their
international obligations under all major intellectual property and
related treaties, including the 1971 Paris text of the Berne
Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works.

Much more work on enforcement needs to be done to control the
illegitimate production and distribution of such "optical media" as
compact discs (CDs), CD-ROMs, video CDs (VCDs) and Digital Versatile
Discs (DVDs).

The GBDe encourages governments to study and, if appropriate, to
provide for the optimal level and means of protection for databases

(For your information, see the previous draft) 

If you have any comment, please e-mail to us.

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