Friday, August 05, 2011

public radio on counterfeits (etc.)

America Abroad, with support from among others the Chamber of Commerce, brings us Counterfeit Crackdown! It starts off with the IP high-protectionist case, including what I thought was the odd choice to have Adrian Johns only give the affirmative arguments for IP and none for its limits, and then spending a lot of time on fake drugs, including in Ghana and India and then moving seamlessly to "piracy" of fabric designs and music downloads in Hungary. However, the program gets more complicated, with one interviewee suggesting that the drug problem should focus on quality rather than counterfeiting and many pointing out that issues like lax enforcement are problems of development--if the border is not being policed and there's a culture of corruption, a lot of things are going to be wrong, not just counterfeiting. Another interviewee notes that no legal provider is available to sell music downloads in Hungary, so that one way to look at the issue is as a market problem, and Chris Sprigman and John Whealan finish up by discussing the ways in which different markets and IP rights require different responses. Victoria Espinel also shows up. Overall, I'd recommend the program for a good overview of the state of play.

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