UN broadcast rights treaty comes for debate next year

MUMBAI: As per the World Intellectual Property Organization (Wipo), a new proposal for an international agreement to protect broadcasting rights will be negotiated during a conference, which is scheduled to take place from 11 July to 1 August 2007.

The proposed treaty, which aims among other things to prevent broadcasting and cable signals being stolen and retransmitted elsewhere, was approved by a key committee of the UN agency.

Wipo director general Kamil Idris has been quoted in media reports as saying that the positive spirit of the discussions will further strengthen consensus on these issues in the months leading up to the diplomatic conference. Wipo deputy director general Rita Hayes described the meeting a tremendous success after eight years of work, and said a lot of the contentious issues could be resolved.

According to reports, a coalition of representatives from electronics and telecommunication companies, including Dell, Intel and Sony, as well as consumer rights organizations, said in a joint statement ahead of the Wipo meeting that they weren't convinced such a treaty was needed and that the most important intellectual property issues were already addressed under existing law.

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