CRIS+ Statement regarding Intellectual Property Provisions in the draft Convention

Submitted by Sasha Costanza-Chock on February 9, 2005.Copyright/Fair Use | Radio

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.

Article 27 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states:

“(1) Everyone has the right freely to participate in the cultural life of the community, to enjoy the
arts and to share in scientific advancement and its benefits.

“(2) Everyone has the right to the protection of the moral and material interests resulting from any
scientific, literary or artistic production of which he is the author.”

In addition, the Action Plan of the UNESCO Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity, paragraph
16, calls for: "Ensuring protection of copyright and related rights in the interest of the development
of contemporary creativity and fair remuneration for creative work, _while at the same time
upholding a public right of access to culture, in accordance with Article 27 of the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights._" (Emphasis ours).

As we have mentioned in previous interventions, it is fundamental to recognize that the rights of
authors and creators are not synonymous with the rights of publishers, broadcasters, or other title
holders, and the rights of the public are different from all of these. This draft Convention, and the
discussion of the plenary to date, unfortunately suggest that the titles held by the owners of cultural
expressions are superior both to the rights of creators and authors, and to the rights of all people to
access, enjoy, and participate in culture.

We urge that this Convention reflect the balance between creators, copyright owners, and the public,
in accordance with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the UNESCO Universal
Declaration on Cultural Diversity. Also we submit that, in general, issues of intellectual property are
best addressed not in this Convention but under the auspices of the World Intellectual Property
Organization, particularly with reference to the WIPO development agenda.

Accordingly, we propose for the delegates’ consideration the following positions and alternative
language for the draft text of the Convention.

Page numbers refer to the English version CLT/CPD/2004/CONF.607/6 23 of December 2004.

Our suggestions appear in italics.

(p.14) - Preamble, paragraph 9: Change "Emphasizing the vital role of the creative act ... intellectual
property rights" to read as the following two paragraphs:
"Emphasising the vital role of the creative act, which nurtures and renovates cultural
expressions, and hence the vital role of artists and others creators, whose work needs to
be appropriately encouraged and rewarded, and also the vital role of the public domain
and cultural commons, which need to be constantly enriched and expanded,"
"Emphasising the need for a balance between the right of all to participate freely in the
cultural life of the community and to enjoy the arts, and the right of the author to the
protection of his or her moral and material interests, as stated in Article 27 of the
Universal Declaration of Human Rights,"
(p.16) - Preamble, paragraph 13: Oppose option 1.
(p.19) - Proposals for new preambles, proposal 1, paragraph 18: Delete.
(p.20) - Proposals for new preambles, proposal 2, paragraph 10: Delete last part of the sentence.

Article 4
(p.42) - Article 4, paragraph 4, cultural goods and services: No on option 3.
(p.43) - Article 4, paragraph 4, subparagraph (c): Change to read: "they generate, or may generate,
a material reward for their creators." Alternatively, We support option 4 (Deletion).
(p.44) - Article 4 paragraph 4, Proposal 1d: Delete everything after "creativity."
(p.44) - Article 4 paragraph 4, Proposals 2, 4, 5: Oppose.
(p.44) - Article 4 paragraph 4, Proposal 6: Delete (d).
(p.45) - Article 4, paragraph 5: Delete the last sentence of option 7.

Article 7
(p.60) - Article 7.1, Proposals-new subparagraphs, proposal 1: Reject proposal 1.
(p.61) - Article 7.2(b): Revise to read as follows:
"(b) that the role of the public domain and the cultural commons are fully recognised, in
making freely available to all the essential raw material for cultural creativity;"
"(c) that copyright and related rights are fully respected and enforced, with an
appropriate balance between the right of authors to their moral and material interests,
and the right of all to freely participate in the cultural life of the community and to enjoy
the arts."

Note: It is especially important to delete the phrase: "particularly through the development or
strengthening of measures against piracy" from paragraph 2 (b). Alternatively, support option 5
(p.62) - Article 7, Proposals for a new Article 7: (f) - No, (g) -Yes.

Article 12
(p.75) - Article 12, paragraph 2(g): In option 2, delete “protection of intellectual property rights”.

Article 18
(p.83) - Article 18, paragraph 1, option 2: Delete the last clause, “while systematically respecting
intellectual property rights.”

Article 19
(p.87) - Article 19, Option A: Paragraph 1, support option 1 (delete this paragraph); paragraph 2,
support original text.
(p.88) - Article 19, Option B: Oppose option B.

Annex II
(p.105) - In Annex II, paragraph 1, suggested addition: just before "promoting culture among young
"Protecting and extending the cultural commons: policies that protect and encourage the enriching
of the cultural commons; copyleft, General Public License; Creative Commons licenses; policies that
protect the public domain; policies that encourage collaborative rather than competitive forms of
cultural production; etc."
(p.106) - In Annex II, paragraph 2, just before "Arts Education," suggested addition of reference to:
"Cultural commons: free/libre open source software; creative commons licenses; support for the
public domain, etc."


The campaign for Communication Rights in the Information Society (CRIS)
& supporters (list of signatory organizations on following page)

Communication Rights in the Information Society (CRIS:
Agencia Latinoamericana de Informacion – ALAI, Ecuador
Agencia Za Informiranje, Croatia
Agenda NFA, Netherlands
Asociación Latinoamericana de Educación Radiofónica (ALER:, America Latina
Amnesty International – Section Suisse, Suisse
Amnistia Internacional – Seccion Chilena, Chile, Seoul
Assemblea per la Comunicacio Social (ACS), Paisos Catalans
Association for Progressive Communications
(APC), South Africa
Bits of Freedom, Netherlands
Bytes for All, South Asia
C & F Editions, France
Carrefour mondial de l'internet citoyen / World Forum on
Community Networking, Canada
CCIAV, Rep Dominicana
Center for Digital Democracy, USA
Central Kalimantan Cultural Collective, Indonesia
PLAGE - Überparteiliche Plattform gegen Atomgefahren
Cineodyssey, Republic of Korea
Civil Media Development Institute, Thailand
Coalition for Cultural Action, Republic of Korea
Comedia - the Swiss media union, Switzerland
Community Communications Online, Australia
Computer Professionals for Social
Responsibility, USA/global
Comunica, Uruguay
ConcienciAccion, USA
Consumer Project on Technology (CPTech), USA
Unibo, Italia
Culturalaction, Republic of Korea
Centre of Community Networking and Information
Policy Studies (CCNS), Russian Federation
Electronic Frontier Foundation, USA
EMA RTV (Asociación de Radio y TV), España
Eparty, Republic of Korea
VOICE Bangladesh, Bangladesh
Eyes of Workers, Republic of Korea
Focus 7, UK
Foundation for Media Alternatives, Philippines
Free Press (, USA
Fundacion Cultural de la Amazona, Colombia
Global Alternate Information Applications (GAIA), India
GAPA/RS, Brasil
GESTOS- Soropositivity, Communication and
Gender Issue, Brazil
Ghana Community Radio Network, Ghana
Hivos, The Netherlands
Inimag, UK
Institute of Local Television, UK
Instituto de Estudos e Projetos em Comunicação e Cultura
Intellectual Property Left, Republic of Korea
Internet and Public Policy Project at Georgia Institute of
Technology (Atlanta), USA
Internet Society, Bulgaria
IP Justice, USA
IT for Change, India
KIFV, Republic of Korea
Korea Teacher Union, Republic of Korea
Korean Progressive Network Jinbonet, Republic of Korea
La Konspiration, Spain
Manhattan Neighborhood Network Youth Channel, USA
Mauritius Union of Journalists, Mauritius
Media Solidarity, Republic of Korea
MediACT, Republic of Korea
Mistica/Funredes, R. Argentina
National Association for the Visual Arts (NAVA),
Netzwerk Neue Medien e.V., Germany
Open Forum of Cambodia, Cambodia
Organisatie van Lokale Omroepen in
Nederland / Dutch Federation of Local Public Broadcasters,
Privacy Ukraine, Ukraine
Radio Ada, Ghana
Reclaim the Media, United States
Recuperando Futuros, Peru
Regional Arts NSW, Australia
RISE, Pakistan
Root - the Dalit Centre, India
World Catholic Association for Communication
(SIGNIS:, Belgium
Society for Public Information Spaces, France
Squinch Labs, Canada
Strawberrynet Foundation (, Romania
Student radio MARS, Maribor – Slovenia
Studio i Scream, Republic of Korea
The Inha Democratic Legal Studies Association, Republic
of Korea
Union for Democratic Communications, USA
Universal Esperanto Association, The Netherlands
Vecam, France
World Association for Christian Communication (WACC)
Waikato 2020 Communications Trust, New Zealand
We Are Media (WArM), Republic of Korea
Women in Politics Institute, affiliate of PILIPINA (National
Organization of Filipino Women), Philippines
World Association of Community Radio
Broadcasters (AMARC)
Youth Interest Organization, Nigeria