News and Commentary
In TechDirt, Mike Masnick criticizes an op-ed by Michael Rosen in The Hill. Rosen maintains that the proposed TRIPS waiver has done nothing to help the COVID-19 pandemic, but Masnick throws cold water on that theory due to its one flaw–the TRIPS waiver has yet to go into effect.
Writing for the National Law Review, Ann Potter Gleason discusses the use of copyright law for reasons not obviously related to “promoting the Progress of Science and the useful Arts.” These include police playing music in an attempt to trigger copyright filters, and other examples of “incidental” inclusion of “ambient” works protected by copyright in other works. Though these cases are more relevant to cases of people abusing copyright filters, it’s important to point out, as she does, that “[t]his isn’t a technical problem to be solved by the platform, but rather the platform’s response to the law surrounding copyright.”
Speaking of cops using Taylor Swift music to try and shut down being recorded, in Techdirt Tim Cushing writes about recently discovered documents related to internal police policy on playing protected music to try and stop people from filming them. While it’s not a smoking gun of a departmental policy, it’s clear that police are at least aware of the power of algorithms and are willing to weaponize them.
A column in VoxEU examines the role intellectual property plays in wage inequality. Looking at a change to intellectual property laws in India which allowed patenting products and not just manufacturing methods, it found that after the reforms in question the divergences wages between high- and low-tech firms increased, along with an increase in the relative wages of managerial workers versus non-managerial workers. This points to the role intellectual property plays not only in growth, but also in intra- and inter-firm inequality.