WIPO Broadcast Rights Treaty
The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) is considering a treaty to modernize broadcasters’ legal anti-piracy protections. DiMA’s participation in WIPO meetings has focused on expanding the treaty to also protect webcasters, which face the same piracy threat as terrestrial broadcasters, cablecasters and satellite broadcasters. If the treaty fails to provide webcasting with effective protection against signal piracy, it will undermine investments of innovating companies that operate in the U.S. and internationally to bring people in every nation access to the broadest array of news, sports and culture.
The United States has championed the inclusion of webcasting, recognizing the need treaties to be forward-thinking, technologically neutral and principled in addressing all challenges for digital and online technologies. In late 2005, the European Commission – following an appeal from DiMA, U.S. and European broadcasters and the U.S. Government – signaled support for WIPO to advance an updated technologically-neutral treaty.
WIPO's Standing Committee on Copyrights and Related Rights (SCCRR) will meet to discuss the broadcast treaty at least once more in 2006 and then may recommend the convening of a diplomatic conference in early 2007 to conclude a treaty. DiMA will continue to actively advocate for the inclusion of webcasters in the WIPO broadcaster protection treaty.