IIPSJ Summer 2019 Filings

IIPSJ stayed active over summer submitting several IP and social justice filings.  Here’s a summary of what we worked on: 

Discrimination in Determining the Scope of Composition – Filed an amicus brief with Professor Sean M. O’Connor to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in the Led Zeppelin ‘Stairway to Heaven’ case.  The brief argues that determining the scope of a composition using only the written “lead sheet” deposit copy discriminates against traditionally marginalized composers that may not be fluent in music notation on a “lead sheet.”

Avoiding Bias in Data Collection – Earlier this summer the USPTO sought comments on women, minorities, and veterans participation in entrepreneurship activities and the patent system.  Professors Lateef Mtima and Steven Jamar joined 2 other professors in submitting a comment in response advocating for creation of a separate, not for profit entity, to collect, analyze, and disseminate demographic information on patent application filers.  Use of a separate entity would avoid bias and the appearance of bias of the use of the demographic information in granting or denying patent applications.

Budget Cap on Universal Service Fund Programs – We submitted comments to the FCC opposing a recently proposed budget cap on Universal Service Fund Programs.  We believe that the proposed cap will harm communities of color, impede entrepreneurial efforts of diverse and small businesses, and mute the creative contributions emerging digital creators.

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