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Ratification of Cultural Diversity Convention

[english below]
Subject: Lettre sur la diversité culturelle

Chers amis,

Le travail effectué par les ONG en vue de l'adoption de la Convention sur "la protection et la promotion de la diversité des expressions culturelles" doit se poursuivre en vue de sa ratification par les Etats membres dans les meilleurs délais, afin d'en assurer l'application. C'est pourquoi nous vous invitons à maintenir vos efforts dans les pays où sont présentes vos Organisations. Nous espérons que la lettre jointe pourra vous y aider. Avec mon meilleur souvenir. Françoise Sauvage, Présidente du Comité de Liaison
Filed Under: Commercialism | English | Français | Internet and Broadband | Media Ownership | Noncommercial Media | Radio | Screen Quotas | Subsidies | Television and Cable

UNESCO adopts convention to protect diversity

PARIS, Oct 20 (IPS) - The United Nations cultural body adopted an international treaty Thursday to protect cultural diversity, marking what experts say is a first but important moral victory in the long-running fight to preserve the world's cultural richness.
Filed Under: Bilateral FTAs | CAFTA | English | FTAA | Media Ownership | NAFTA | Radio | Regional FTAs | Screen Quotas | Subsidies | Television and Cable | USAUSFTA | WTO


Details of how NGOs can register to attend the 6th WTO Ministerial
Conference in Hong Kong, 13 to 18 December 2005, are now available at
Filed Under: Copyright/Fair Use | English | Internet and Broadband | Media Ownership | Noncommercial Media | Radio | Screen Quotas | Subsidies | Television and Cable | WTO

UNESCO convention on cultural diversity: key documents

UNESCO logo Government delegates from over 180 countries approved the final text of the Convention on Cultural Diversity (CCD) at the UNESCO General Assembly in the fall of 2005. The CCD (formally known as the Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Contents and Artistic Expressions) is meant to be an international legal agreement to implement the principle that culture cannot be reduced to a commodity. Concretely, it is meant to allow each country to exclude its cultural policies, including 'audiovisual services' - otherwise known as media - from 'free trade' deals like the WTO.

During the negotiations, progressive NGO networks like the International Network on Cultural Diversity and the campaign for Communication Rights in the Information Society called for broad civil society support for the CCD, but warned that it should not be subordinated to the WTO and should be written to support cultural and media diversity inside countries, not only between them. In addition, they had a good deal of success in lobbying for the elimination of language supporting the current extremist copyright regime, although they failed to insert references to the importance of the public domain, fair use, and the creative commons.

Now that the CCD has been approved by UNESCO, the next step is ratification by each member country.

Key Documents:
  • Final Text of the convention. [en | fr]
  • Comments by the CRIS campaign [ en | es | fr]
  • Comments by the INCD [word]
  • UNESCO overview of the Convention process
  • Daily reports from the II session of the intergovernmental meeting [Day: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 8 | 9 | 10| 11| 12 ]
  • US government: April 15 Briefing by the US State Department on their view of the UNESCO convention [download .rtf]
  • Reports from the III (final) session of the intergovernmental meeting: UNESCO report | INCD
  • Filed Under: Copyright/Fair Use | Government | Industry | Internet and Broadband | Media Ownership | NGO | Noncommercial Media | Radio | Screen Quotas | Subsidies | All related documents


    From BNA's Internet Law News (ILN) - 4/28/05, Compiled by Professor Michael Geist, BNA Consulting Editor: CAFTA TO EXTEND COPYRIGHT & TRADEMARK PROVISIONS TO AMERICAS.
    BNA's Electronic Commerce & Law Report reports on a recent House Committee hearing on the Central America Free Trade Agreement with the U.S. The agreement includes provisions requiring WIPO Internet treaty ratification, extension of the term of copyright protection, and inclusion of UDRP-like
    Filed Under: CAFTA | Copyright/Fair Use | English | Radio | Regional FTAs

    Free Press blog from WIPO meeting

    whither wipo logo

    Free Press ( and the Consumer Project on Technology ( teamed up to bring you a blow-by-blow from inside last week's important World Intellectual Propety Organization (WIPO) meeting in Geneva. At this meeting, public interest organizations supported developing country demands for a Development Agenda that would reform WIPO and put development needs ahead of an ever-broader 'intellectual property' regime. If the Development Agenda succeeds, WIPO could shift from being a tool of Big Media, Pharma, Agribusiness, and Micro$oft, used to promote stronger, longer copyright, patents, and trademarks without regard to the impacts on health, creativity, the media system and development, to an institution that promotes access to knowledge with the aim of meeting the UN Millenium Development Goals. Brazilian activist Pablo Ortellado blogged regular updates on the battle inside WIPO to

    Background: Overview of WIPO | Overview of Development Agenda proposal | Geneva Declaration on the Future of WIPO | WIPO homepage

    MTM Reports: April 11 | April 12 | April 13 (final day)

    CPTech Reports and Key Documents: CPTech list of proposals, statements, news stories

    Filed Under: Copyright/Fair Use | English | Radio

    Monopoly or Monopsony: A new view on corporate media practices

    The article challenges the "monopoly" view of culture industries and offers an alternative view of these industries as monopsonies. Draft of a chapter for an edited volume by Cushla Kapitzke and Chip Bruce for Peter Lang.
    Filed Under: Copyright/Fair Use | Internet and Broadband | Journalism | Media Ownership | Noncommercial Media | Radio | Screen Quotas | Subsidies

    Aussie BitTorrent case to test Aust-US FTA

    A federal magistrate today rejected a request from solicitors representing Internet service provider Swiftel Communications and associated parties to move a court case over alleged copyright infringement to the Federal Court.
    Filed Under: Bilateral FTAs | Copyright/Fair Use | Radio | USAUSFTA

    CRIS+ Statement regarding Intellectual Property Provisions in the draft Convention

    To UNESCO Delegates: The undersigned support the spirit of the UNESCO draft convention on cultural diversity and are encouraged by the efforts of the delegates in their inter-governmental meeting in Paris, January- February 2005. However, we are deeply concerned that the current draft mentions the need to protect or even strengthen intellectual property more than 16 times, while failing entirely to mention the need to protect access to knowledge, the public domain, and the cultural commons. If this imbalance is not corrected, the proposed Convention would represent a serious departure from both the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the UNESCO Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity.
    Filed Under: Copyright/Fair Use | NGO | Radio | Social Movement | Testimony | All related documents