Washington – The U.S. Trade Representative is considering charges from the International Intellectual Property Alliance that South Africa should lose its eligibility for trade benefits under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) because its proposed fair use laws are problematic. The Computer & Communications Industry Association filed comments today following a hearing on this issue.
While some countries have more limited exceptions to copyright law, the United States has broader fair use rights which have enabled its media and tech industries and their users to engage in a wide variety of activities, ranging from interoperability of products to information sharing and speech online.
CCIA has advocated on fair use issues for more than 30 years and published studies on the value industries that rely on fair use bring to the U.S. economy.
The following can be attributed to CCIA Vice President Ali Sternburg:
“These objections to fair use, which enable American consumers to find and share information online, are unwarranted. USTR itself has noted that U.S. consumers and businesses rely on exceptions to copyright law like fair use. A fair use law in South Africa modeled after the U.S. will help both U.S. and South African businesses, creators, and users.”