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IP "special" rules not surefire cure to piracy

- AJ de la Torre () - November 10, 2009 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - “It will help our campaign but I cannot estimate if piracy rate will go down.”

This according to Bienvenido Marquez, the consultant for the Philippines Committee of the Business Software Alliance after a reported development on the awaited approval of the proposed “special rules” for hearing of intellectual property cases in the country.

Marquez, said in a text message to The Freeman that the draft rules was just presented by Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines Director General Adrian Cristobal to Supreme Court Chief Justice Reynato Puno last October 23.

Puno and the IPO proposed the special rules last year in order to help the hearing of IP cases which would possibly assist the industries who are victims of piracy in the country.

The special rules would be able to help those who have been victims of piracy not to hesitate in pursuing cases against those who are interfering with their IP rights and would give them justice by convicting those who are found guilty.

Marquez explained that he could not say as to how many percent it would help in terms of decreasing piracy rate not only in their sector which is the software industry but also to other industries being pirated like the music industry.

Latest statistics shared by BSA was the 2008 numbers, which showed a 69 percent of piracy rater in computer softwares alone which was more or less the same in 2007, said Marquez.

But he said that they are optimistic with the impact this would give on their continuous effort to fight piracy in the Philippines.

Marquez said though that the fight for piracy of softwares and piracy in general is difficult in the Philippines.

It is very hard because of delays in litigation, like delaying tactics of the accused,” Marquez added.

He also said that though the government is doing their best, it might still fall short.

Marquez mentioned that in the United Stated Trade Representative report for 2009, the Philippines, which is US’s trading partner, is on their low-level watchlist along with 32 other countries worldwide. Twelve countries are on USTR’s priority watchlist.

USTR’s website stated that “The Administration will conduct Out-of-Cycle Reviews for Fiji, Israel, the Philippines, Poland, and Saudi Arabia to monitor progress on specific IPR issues.

The trading partners of the US on the Priority Watch List “do not provide an adequate level of IPR protection or enforcement, or market access for persons relying on intellectual property protection” while those in the lower-level watch list “merit bilateral attention to address the underlying IPR problem.”

Marquez said that through the attention being given to address the IP rights of different industries, more investors would come in and they would slowly be able to have smooth operations without thinking of piracy issues.

BIENVENIDO MARQUEZ INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OFFICE OF THE PHILIPPINES DIRECTOR GENERAL ADRIAN CRISTOBAL MARQUEZ OUT-OF-CYCLE REVIEWS PHILIPPINES PHILIPPINES COMMITTEE OF THE BUSINESS SOFTWARE ALLIANCE PIRACY PRIORITY WATCH LIST SAUDI ARABIA SUPREME COURT CHIEF JUSTICE REYNATO PUNO UNITED STATED TRADE REPRESENTATIVE
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