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Source link: http://archive.mises.org/5664/ip-imperialism-russia-intellectual-property-and-the-wto/

IP Imperialism (Russia, Intellectual Property , and the WTO)

September 22, 2006 by

Russia Adopts New IP Laws to Strengthen Bid for WTO:

The Red Square has recently amended its Intellectual Property legislation in attempt to secure endorsement form the US for its bid to enter the World Trade Organization. Russia is the only major world economy that does not hold membership with the WTO, although it has been campaigning for 12 years to get a spot. Its candidacy has been blocked by the US, who refuses to endorse the bid due to concerns over weak intellectual property rights as reflected in Russia’s copyright protection and rampant piracy.

I wonder if, 10-20 years from now, Russian high school and college students, patent lawyers, and “sober professionals” will all repeat the mantra that “Russia has IP law because it is necessary to encourage innovation,” or whether they will say, “we have IP law because America twisted our arm.”

Update: Russian music download site sends defiant message to US (thanks to Michael Barnett)


Stefan Karlsson September 22, 2006 at 2:46 pm

In a partly related issue, it might interest some here that the election results in Sweden is now out.
And the single-issue anti-IP party Piratpartiet got 34918 votes or 0.63% of the total, making it the third biggest party not represented in the Swedish parliament, after Sverigedemokraterna (a “far right” nationalist anti-immigration party) who got 2.93% and Feministiskt initiativ (a extreme feminist group) who got 0.68%. (The threshold for entering the parliament is 4%.)


The one libertarian party, Klassiskt Liberala Partiet, fared far worse, receiving a pathetic 202 votes or 0.004%.

averros September 22, 2006 at 10:11 pm

Russians have a fine tradition of ignoring the laws.

The leading 19th century Russian satirist, Mikhail Saltykov-Shchedrin, famously noted that “the severity of the Russian laws is mitigated only by the arbitrariness of their application”.

I can confidently predict that adoption of US “IP regime” by the RF government will have no effect on the circulation of unlicensed copies whatsoever.

TGGP September 23, 2006 at 12:46 am

Imagine how many would have died if the Soviet Union had not applied its laws arbitrarily!

guy eames October 14, 2007 at 12:07 am

There is still hope that Russia will respect IP laws – last week they decided to end the long stand-off over pirated Microsoft software in schools and opted for linux: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/7034828.stm

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