PRA Applauds IPEC Legislative Recommendations

Today, White House Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator (IPEC), Victoria Espinel, released her recommendations for legislation to improve IP enforcement. PRA applauds the Office of the IPEC for their continued work in recognizing the problem counterfeiting and piracy not only poses to jobs and the economy but more importantly, to the health and safety of the public.

Fake products of all kinds are entering the supply chain in record numbers, posing a serious health and safety risk to this country. From tainted pharmaceuticals to substandard airplane parts, counterfeit products continue to cause serious harm to life and physical property. The IPEC’s recommendations focus on increasing the criminal penalties for specific activities that deal with offenses that put the public in danger including: the sale of counterfeited goods to the military, counterfeiting and piracy that is funded by organized crime, and for counterfeit drug offenses.

We also applaud the IPEC’s recommendation that Congress enact a performance right for sound recording. PRA has long been an advocate of the right of performers to collect royalties from broadcasters when their recordings are played on the radio. Under current law, radio broadcasters are allowed to use copyrighted intellectual property without compensation because of the perceived promotional benefit to the owner of the creative work. Satellite, Internet, and Cable broadcasters are not exempt and must pay for the use of music, regardless of any promotional benefit to the artist.