Wednesday, December 14, 2016

New White House Report Promotes Enforcement of IP Rights

On December 12, 2016, the White House’s Office of the U.S. Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator (IPEC) published a report entitled “Supporting Innovation, Creativity and Enterprise: Charting a Path Ahead,” which promotes strengthening the enforcement of IP rights in the U.S. and abroad for the next three years.
The IPEC submits a joint strategic plan to Congress every three years under the Pro-IP Act of 2008. The Pro-IP Act outlined the following objectives for the joint strategic plan:
  • Reduce counterfeit and infringing goods in domestic and international supply chains;
  • Identify unjustified impediments to effective enforcement action against the financing, production, trafficking, or sale of counterfeit or infringing goods;
  • Support the sharing of information to curb illicit trade;
  • Disrupt domestic and international counterfeiting and infringement networks;
  • Strengthen the capacity of other countries to protect and enforce intellectual property rights;
  • Establish with other governments international standards and policies for the effective protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights; and
  • Protect intellectual property rights overseas by enhancing international collaboration and public-private partnerships.
With those objective in mind, the joint strategic plan for FY 2017-19 sets goals including: (1) enhance national understanding of economic and social impacts from trade secrets misappropriation and IP rights infringement; (2) minimize counterfeiting and IP-infringing activity online; (3) secure and facilitate lawful trade; and (4) enhance domestic strategies and global collaboration.

IPEC Daniel Marti should be commended for the new report. Not only does it recognize the impact that strong protections of IP rights has had on U.S. GDP ($6.6 trillion value added), but it addresses key ways that IP rights can be strengthened including: curbing illicit efforts with innovative enforcement techniques; increasing the ability of consumers to recognize illegal content and goods; and using trade agreements to promote strong global IP rights.
Utilizing various means to enforce rights enables artists and creators to earn a return on their labor and incentivizes innovation and economic activity around the world.