Author Archives: Shawn Sullivan

Ecuador: Change Constitution to Protect Traditional Knowledge

  Ecuador’s national government has proposed to amend the country’s constitution to provide special protections against the misappropriation of traditional knowledge and biological diversity. Propuesta de enmiendas constitucionales sobre la protección de los Saberes Ancestrales y la Biodiversidad del Ecuador, Secretaría … Continue reading

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Australian Full Federal Court Upholds Myriad Gene Patent

Today, in D’Arcy v Myriad Genetics Inc [2014] FCAFC 115, the Full Court of the Federal Court of Australia upheld the validity of Myriad Genetics’s Australian patent on methods and materials relating to the human  gene known as BRCA1. THE BRCA1 GENE. … Continue reading

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Guatemalan Congress Repeals Plant Variety Rights Law

Today the Congress of the Republic of Guatemala voted to repeal in its entirety the Law for the Protection of Plant Variety Rights that it approved less than three months ago. Congreso de la República aprueba de urgencia nacional derogatoria del … Continue reading

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Guatemalan Protesters Demand Repeal of Plant Variety Rights Law

In demonstrations today in Guatemala City, Guatemala, public officials and thousands of residents of indigenous communities demanded that the national legislature repeal the recently-enacted Plant Variety Rights Law. See Diputados se comprometen a derogar Ley Monsanto, Prensa Libre (2 Sept. … Continue reading

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Increased Fines for Violations of North Carolina Seed Law

In 2013, the North Carolina legislature increased the maximum fine for violations of the state’s seed law from $500 to $10,000 per violation. See N.C. Session Law 2013-345, Senate Bill 455, An act to increase penalties for violation of the seed … Continue reading

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Unintended Consequences of Open Access Publishing Policies

Rick Anderson at The Scholarly Kitchen has a thought-provoking article regarding the pressure on authors to publish their academic articles under the most permissive open access licenses available. See Rick Anderson, CC-BY, Copyright, and Stolen Advocacy, The Scholarly Kitchen (Mar. … Continue reading

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“Twilight” Trademark Infringement Claims Cleared for Trial

The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York ruled that the entertainment company responsible for the “Twilight” film series is entitled to a trial on claims that its trademarks were infringed by a cosmetics company’s use of … Continue reading

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Spanish Trademark Office: “Paella Catalana” too Generic to Register as Mark

On September 10, 2013, Barcelona chef Quim Marqués applied to the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office for registration of the trademark PAELLA CATALANA–the name of a wildly popular dish of rice, chicken, and seafood created by Marqués at the restaurant … Continue reading

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South Africa Advertising Body Says GM Crops Ad “Unsubstantiated”

On March 17, 2014, the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) of South Africa–a non-governmental, self-regulatory body established by the marketing communication industry–declared that a radio advertisement that touted several benefits of genetically engineered crops violated the ASA’s Code of Advertising Practice. Mariam … Continue reading

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