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<title>Observing the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)</title>
<h3>Changing the</h3>
<h1>World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)</h1>
<div class="image right">
<img src="/activities/wipo/wipo.en.png" alt="WIPO Logo" width="200" height="140" />
The <a href="">World Intellectual Property
Organization (WIPO)</a> is one of the 16 specialized agencies of the
<a href="">United Nations</a> system of organisations.
Its role is administrating 23 international treates dealing with
different aspects of limited monopolies on knowledge.
According to its own <a href="">web page</a>, it is
<p class="indent">
"an international organization dedicated to promoting the use and
protection of works of the human spirit. These works -- intellectual
property -- are expanding the bounds of science and technology and
enriching the world of the arts. Through its work, WIPO plays an
important role in enhancing the quality and enjoyment of life, as well
as creating real wealth for nations."
As explained in articles such as
"<a href="/activities/wsis/issues.html">Fighting intellectual
poverty</a>" or "<a href="/activities/wipo/iprip.html">On 'Intellectual
Property' and Indigenous Peoples</a>" on FSFEs web page -- as well as
many others on the net -- the statement above did not match reality in the past. The
<a href="">Geneva
Declaration</a> states clearly how in the past WIPO has had a history of
"intellectually weak, ideologically rigid, and sometimes brutally
unfair and inefficient policies."
For anyone involved in questions of freedom in a digital age, such as
Free Software Foundation Europe, WIPO is often at the root of current
threats, such as <a href="/activities/swpat/">software patents</a>, the
<a href="/activities/eucd/">European Copyright Directive (EUCD)</a> and
others. When these come to a European or national level, we often find
that little room for change exists.
Instead of reacting to legislative projects individually when they are
passed down, Free Software Foundation Europe is proactively
facilitating more useful legislation at its root, the
global level, in which WIPO is one key player. For that reason,
FSFE has requested observer status to WIPO in 2003, which was
granted during the Assemblies of the Member States of WIPO from
September 27 to October 5, 2004.
Together with a global coalition of other players with similar goals,
FSFE will work to change the "World Intellectual Property Organization"
into a "<a href="/activities/wipo/wiwo.html">World Intellectual Wealth
<dynamic-content />
<li>Free Software Foundation Europe supports the <a href="">Development Agenda -- IIM/3 NGO Statement</a> for the third <a href="" target="_blank">Inter-Sessional, Inter-Governmental Meeting (IIM) on a Development Agenda</a>, 20 July 2005</li>
<li>Statement in Support of the Geneva Declaration: <a href="/activities/wipo/wiwo.html">Towards a 'World Intellectual Wealth Organisation'</a></li>
<li>Article: <a href="/freesoftware/standards/ps.html">Analysis on balance: Standardisation and Patents</a></li>
<li>Article: <a href="/activities/wsis/issues.html">Fighting intellectual poverty</a></li>
<li>Article: <a href="/activities/wipo/iprip.html">On 'Intellectual Property' and Indigenous Peoples</a></li>
<li>Project page: <a href="/activities/wsis/">World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS)</a></li>
<li>Project page: <a href="/activities/swpat/">Software Patents</a></li>
<li>Project page: <a href="/activities/eucd/">European Copyright Directive (EUCD)</a></li>
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