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First off today, the House of Lords in the UK has approved the Digital Economy Bill, paving the way for a “three strikes” system in the country and also for the blocking of Web sites that contain large amounts of infringing material. The House did drop a controversial amendment that would have allowed ministers to edit copyright law without Parliament’s review. However, many of the details, including some of the more controversial ones, will need to be handled by the House of Commons when they take up the bill shortly, including how Web sites can challenge a block in the country.
Next up today, a dispute over cotton farming may spill over to the copyright arena as Brazil, with blessing from the World Trade Organization, may increase fees and tighten regulation on U.S.-based copyright holders in the music and audiovisual industry. The dispute stems from a U.S. subsidizing cotton farmers in the country, who export their crops to Brazil at extremely low rates.
Finally today, Japan and China have signed a copyright memo which calls for a series of meetings to hash out copyright issues and, according to Japan, will hopefully make it easier for their entertainment industries to market to China, where they have historically faced very high piracy rates.
That’s it for the three count today. We will be back tomorrow with three more copyright links. If you have a link that you want to suggest a link for the column or have any proposals to make it better. Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email. I hope to hear from you.
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