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Intellectual Property Breakfast Club Examines IP Enforcement

WASHINGTON, May 16, 2011 – The Intellectual Property Breakfast Club last week featured a keynote address by Erik Barnett, Assistant Deputy Director at the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and subsequent panel with industry experts, taking a closer look at administration recommendations to expand the scope of IP laws and increase certain penalties for infringement.

Barnett’s keynote focused on “Operation In Our Sites,” an ICE initiative that focuses on stopping Internet counterfeiting and piracy. The initiative seizes U.S.-based sites that provide illegal content via the web. Critics allege that the seizures deprive domain registrants of due process.

Intellectual Property Enforcement: Where Does the Law Need to be Updated?

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WASHINGTON, May 16, 2011 – The Intellectual Property Breakfast Club last week featured a keynote address by Erik Barnett, Assistant Deputy Director at the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and subsequent panel with industry experts, taking a closer look at administration recommendations to expand the scope of IP laws and increase certain penalties for infringement.

Barnett’s keynote focused on “Operation In Our Sites,” an ICE initiative that focuses on stopping Internet counterfeiting and piracy.  The initiative seizes U.S.-based sites that provide illegal content via the web.  Critics allege that the seizures deprive domain registrants of due process.

Since June 30, 2010, according to Barnett, 120 sites have been seized by ICE, all of which were entirely commercial and profiting from trade in infringing goods.

Intellectual Property Enforcement: Where Does the Law Need to be Updated?

“These are sites… that are existing purely on ad revenue or subscription packages or sales or a combination of the three,” said Barnett. “Ultimately, they are purely violative.  We get a lot of questions about blogs, chat rooms, community forums – [we are] not interested; don’t have time.”

Barnett went on to note that Operation In Our Sites is intended to be one of several tools to prevent online infringement and that those from whom ICE seizes sites have several methods of recourse through the court system.

During the panel discussion, Jason Gull, a Senior Counsel, Computer Crime & Intellectual Property Section (CCIPS) of the United States Department of Justice, described some of the issues that occur with sites that stream content.

“There is not as a technical and factual matter, it is unclear whether we can show a violation of the distribution right or the reproduction right,” said Gull. “Part of this is a metaphysical argument about whether reproduction occurs in a buffer in a computer somewhere, but as a practical matter in court, it’s not clear that we can do that.”

Under copyright law, the content owner holds both the distribution and reproduction rights.  Individuals who reproduce or distribute copyrighted material without permission violate the rights of the content owner.

Chun Wright, an attorney who specializes in IP enforcement as well as Internet and technology law, described the difficulties associated with protecting IP.

“You’ll hear people in the enforcement world talk about it as a ‘whack-a-mole’ problem,” said Wright, “and it very much is, except the moles are on steroids and they’re mutating.”

M. Luisa Simpson, Executive Director of International Copyright Enforcement & Trade Policy at the Association of American Publishers, noted the changing face of infringement in the publishing world with the rise of new technology that is moving books and magazines increasingly online and onto portable devices.

“With the ubiquity of electronic reading devices that are now far smaller, lightweight, and easier to read, the scope of the piracy for our industry has grown,” said Simpson. “What we’re finding now is that there’re not just unauthorized digitized copies of printed books, but we’re finding the actual e-books, stripped of the encryption, can be downloaded onto these readers.”

David McClure, President and CEO of the US Internet Industry Association, cautioned against increasing penalties against enforcers rather than improving the means by which the current laws are enforced.

“I think is has to be recognized that the law enforcement agencies have to get a lot better than they are right now at the game,” said McClure.  “I don’t think any of the law enforcement agencies would disagree with this; they’re being badly outgunned.”

The panel further discussed issues of law enforcement’s effectiveness in prosecuting infringers, the rhetoric surrounding the debate on IP enforcement and, more generally, where to strike the balance between protecting content owners and protecting citizens from the overreach of government.

“When we’ve got valid legal process, we want to be able to obtain evidence,” said Gull, “and that’s critical not just in IP, but in all sorts of law enforcement issues.”

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Broadband Breakfast on September 21, 2022 – Broadband Mapping and Data

The future of the Biden administration’s Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act depends upon the FCC’s maps.

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See “Panelists at Broadband Breakfast Event Urge the FCC Mapping Fabric Be Made Public,” Broadband Breakfast, September 22, 2022

Our Broadband Breakfast Live Online events take place on Wednesday at 12 Noon ET. Watch the event on Broadband Breakfast, or REGISTER HERE to join the conversation.

Wednesday, September 21, 2022, 12 Noon ET – Broadband Mapping and Data

Much hinges on the success or failure of the Federal Communications Commissions’ updated broadband maps. This fall the agency is entering into a period of intensive updating in which it is assessing an address-level “fabric” of locations and comparing internet service data received from providers. Now comes the hard part: Providing a framework for broadband users and providers to understand and challenge the FCC’s map. The future of the Biden administration’s Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act depends upon it.

Panelists:

  • Scott Wallsten, President, Technology Policy Institute
  • Bryan Darr, Vice President of Smart Communities at Ookla
  • Dustin Loup, Program Manager, Marconi Society’s National Broadband Mapping Coalition
  • Drew Clark (moderator), Editor and Publisher, Broadband Breakfast

Panelist resources:

Don’t miss the Broadband Mapping Masterclass! You can navigate the treacherous waters around broadband mapping by participating in this 2-hour Masterclass for only $99. Enroll TODAY in this LIVE Masterclass on Tuesday, September 27, at 12 Noon ET

Bryan Darr is the Vice President of Smart Communities at Ookla. He coordinates Ookla’s outreach to local, state and federal governments and serves on CTIA’s Smart Cities Business & Technology Working Group.

Scott Wallsten is President and Senior Fellow at the Technology Policy Institute and also a senior fellow at the Georgetown Center for Business and Public Policy. He is an economist with expertise in industrial organization and public policy, and his research focuses on competition, regulation, telecommunications, the economics of digitization, and technology policy. He holds a Ph.D. in economics from Stanford University.

Dustin Loup is an expert on internet governance and policy and program manager for the Marconi Society’s National Broadband Mapping Coalition. Much of his work centers on improving digital inclusion and establishing transparent, open-source, and openly verifiable mapping methodologies and standards.

White House photo from August 2021 by Adam Schultz

WATCH HERE, or on YouTubeTwitter and Facebook.

As with all Broadband Breakfast Live Online events, the FREE webcasts will take place at 12 Noon ET on Wednesday.

SUBSCRIBE to the Broadband Breakfast YouTube channel. That way, you will be notified when events go live. Watch on YouTubeTwitter and Facebook

See a complete list of upcoming and past Broadband Breakfast Live Online events.

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Broadband Breakfast on September 14, 2022 – How Can Cities Take Advantage of Federal Broadband Funding?

There is an increasing worry that cities may be left out of the wealth of resources for broadband infrastructure spending.

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Our Broadband Breakfast Live Online events take place on Wednesday at 12 Noon ET. Watch the event on Broadband Breakfast, or REGISTER HERE to join the conversation.

Wednesday, September 14, 2022, 12 Noon ET – How Can Cities Take Advantage of Federal Broadband Funding?

As the nation eagerly awaits the release of updated national broadband maps from the Federal Communications Commission, there is an increasing worry that cities may be left out of the wealth of resources made available through the bipartisan infrastructure funding measure. Will the focus on “unserved” and “underserved” communities – even if broadband in cities is not affordable or reliable – impede local governments’ ability to access Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act funding? Join us for this Broadband Breakfast Live Online event to air cities’ concerns.

Panelists:

  • Scott Menhart, Chief Information Technology Office, Traverse City, Michigan
  • Brieana Reed-Harmel, Fiber Manager, Loveland Pulse
  • Andrew Butcher, President, Maine Connectivity Authority.
  • Nathan Hoople, Senior Project Manager, Ditesco Project & Construction Services
  • Drew Clark (moderator), Editor and Publisher, Broadband Breakfast

Upcoming resources:

Scott Menhart, the chief information technology officer for Traverse City Light & Power (TCLP), has more than 20 years of experience in technology and broadband industries. He has been actively involved with multiple fiber to the premise deployments and recently launched TCLPfiber, a full municipal community network. TCLP currently serves nearly 13,000 electric customers and is currently working to expand TCLPfiber services to these customers.

Brieana Reed-Harmel is the Municipal Fiber Manager for Pulse, the community-driven and city-owned 100% fiber-optic broadband network in Loveland, Colorado. Brieana brings over 20 years of utility experience in engineering and leadership roles, spanning both the public and private sectors. Brieana was officially named Municipal Fiber Manager in December 2018 after leading the city through assessment and feasibility study of publicly owned broadband. In her current role she oversees all aspects of the construction and operation of Pulse, making fiber-optic internet service a reality for every home, business, and school in Loveland.

Andrew Butcher is the inaugural president of The Maine Connectivity Authority a new quasi-governmental agency serving as the primary entity charged with achieving universal access of affordable high-speed broadband in the state of Maine. By balancing investments in projects, places and people MCA is advancing digital equity for all.  Butcher has over 15 years in community and economic development, social entrepreneurship and connected infrastructure. Prior to his role at MCA he founded an internationally recognized non-profit, served as director of the Maine Broadband Coalition and helped advance numerous innovation and resilience initiatives in Maine.

Nathan Hoople is a Senior Project Manager for Ditesco. He brings over 17 years of experience in the telecommunications, construction, energy, control systems and program management industries. Prior to joining Ditesco, he was responsible for a variety of large infrastructure projects for the National Science Foundation’s United States Antarctic Program including data center design and fiber network installation. He is currently managing Ditesco’s broadband portfolio including overseeing the FTTP build for Pulse in Loveland, CO and providing support for Fort Collins Connexion, as well as feasibility and strategic planning for Larimer County and the Town of Timnath.

Drew Clark is the Editor and Publisher of BroadbandBreakfast.com and a nationally-respected telecommunications attorney. Under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, he served as head of a State Broadband Initiative in Illinois. Now, in light of the 2021 Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, Attorney Clark helps fiber-based and wireless clients secure funding, identify markets, broker infrastructure and operate in the public right of way. He is also the President of the Rural Telecommunications Congress.

Photo of Austin skyline from the Brookings Institution.

WATCH HERE, or on YouTubeTwitter and Facebook.

As with all Broadband Breakfast Live Online events, the FREE webcasts will take place at 12 Noon ET on Wednesday.

SUBSCRIBE to the Broadband Breakfast YouTube channel. That way, you will be notified when events go live. Watch on YouTubeTwitter and Facebook

See a complete list of upcoming and past Broadband Breakfast Live Online events.

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Broadband Breakfast on September 7, 2022 – Assessing the NTIA’s Middle Mile Grant Application Process

The event will be headlined by Sarah Bleau, middle mile program director at the National Telecommunications and Information Administration.

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See NTIA Middle Mile Director Stresses Need for Infrastructure to Withstand Climate Events, Broadband Breakfast, September 8, 2022

Our Broadband Breakfast Live Online events take place on Wednesday at 12 Noon ET. Watch the event on Broadband Breakfast, or REGISTER HERE to join the conversation.

Wednesday, September 7, 2022, 12 Noon ET – Assessing the NTIA’s Middle Mile Grant Application Process, an Event Headlined by NTIA’s Sarah Bleau

Most of the attention from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act has been focused on last-mile broadband deployment. But the deadline for IIJA’s Middle Mile grant program is coming up on September 30, 2022. In this special Broadband Breakfast Live Online session, we’ll begin with a brief headline presentation by Sarah Bleau, Middle Mile Program Director at the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, speaking about the $1 billion program, how the agency is handling the program, and how Middle Mile grants will impact the $42.5 billion last-mile broadband program.

Panelists:

  • Sarah Bleau, Middle Mile Program Director, National Telecommunications and Information Administration
  • Doug Maglothin, Executive Director, Diamond States Network
  • Mark Goldstein, President of the International Research Center
  • Drew Clark (moderator), Editor and Publisher, Broadband Breakfast

Panelist resources:

Sarah Bleau (center) joined the National Telecommunications and Information Administration in February 2021 as the Middle Mile Program Director. She took on this leadership role for the Broadband Infrastructure Program in Fall 2021 and saw the program through to the award recommendations and announcements made in February 2022. Sarah has extensive industry experience from spending the better part of her career buying, building, and selling fiber networks Sarah holds a master’s degree in business administration from the Illinois Institute of Technology.

Doug Maglothin (left) is presently serving as the lead on the Diamond State Networks middle mile project which is the largest and fastest networks of its kind in all of Arkansas. Founded by electric cooperatives, DSN’s goal is to make Arkansas the most significantly connected state in the country by promoting fast and affordable broadband to every corner of the state. Working alongside the coops, Doug helped to develop Diamond State Networks from its inception in 2020 as a consultant by way of his firm, Leverage Broadband Strategies where he serves as a Partner and Chief Strategy Officer.

Mark Goldstein (right) is chairman of the Arizona Telecommunications & Information Council and president of the International Research Center.

Drew Clark (moderator, not pictured) is the Editor and Publisher of BroadbandBreakfast.com and a nationally-respected telecommunications attorney. Under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, he served as head of a State Broadband Initiative in Illinois. Now, in light of the 2021 Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, Attorney Clark helps fiber-based and wireless clients secure funding, identify markets, broker infrastructure and operate in the public right of way. He is also the President of the Rural Telecommunications Congress.

Photo from the National Association of Counties

WATCH HERE, or on YouTubeTwitter and Facebook.

As with all Broadband Breakfast Live Online events, the FREE webcasts will take place at 12 Noon ET on Wednesday.

SUBSCRIBE to the Broadband Breakfast YouTube channel. That way, you will be notified when events go live. Watch on YouTubeTwitter and Facebook

See a complete list of upcoming and past Broadband Breakfast Live Online events.

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