The word counterfeit often denotes a product that is fake and of poor quality. Dictionaries have defined the word to mean an imitation intended to be passed off fraudulently or deceptively as genuine.Breaking down this definition, counterfeit goods are intended to trick consumers to believe that that which they purchase are genuine goods; whereas they are unauthorized copies of branded goods presented as the authentic goods. For example, Christian Louboutin high heels are well known for having red bottoms; the sale of high heels with red bottoms and passing them off as Louboutin shoes is a good example of counterfeiting.
When the French government purchased the first photography patent, photography was declared ‘a gift to free the word’. These words would turn out to be somewhat prophetic, as photography would go on to have a resounding impact on the world. For instance, photography played a role in sensitizing people on the horrors of war, since for the first time, citizens of different countries were able to actually see the ravages of war that had before then seemed so far away. 180 years later, it is interesting to note how the law concerning photography has developed in Kenya. Does the state of applicable laws show our esteem for this gift or are we stifling it? In this blog, we discuss the law on photography in three broad themes: copyright; image rights and privacy; and security.
Traditional Knowledge (TK) is any knowledge originating from a local or traditional community that is the result of intellectual activity and insight in a traditional context, including know-how, skills, innovations, practices and learning, where the knowledge is embodied in the traditional lifestyle of a community and is passed on from one generation to another. TK often forms part of a community’s cultural and spiritual identity, technical, ecological and medical knowledge as well as biodiversity-related knowledge.Folklore expressions (Folklore) on the other hand, are any forms, whether tangible or intangible, in which traditional culture and knowledge are expressed, appear or are manifested.
Despite clear definitions, there has
been a drumming debate whether TK and Folklore should be protected. If not,
why? and if yes, how? Would it be through the intellectual property (IP) regime
or any other mechanisms? The prevailing and ongoing argument is captured in part
The author posits that there is already a starting point to finding a way to protect TK and Folklore given their special nature. This is by rethinking the Swakopmund Protocol as a model law and a sui generis system for African countries to come up with corresponding national laws. Sui generis basically means that of its own kind or class; peculiar.
As highlighted in our previous post (here), the Strathmore Law Clinic (website here) began an initiative known as the Ubunifu Initiative, whose main focus is promoting the effective use and exploitation of creativity and innovation through the development and sensitization of intellectual property law and rights. The second session happened on the 30th of August, 2019, where we had one of our own, Ms. Caroline Wanjiru, being a panelist and sharing her expertise.
The focus was still on creatives; in particular musicians, authors and performing artists. The discussions focused on copyrights, copyright protection and related rights of the respective groups’ works. The session began with the panelists giving a brief discussion of intellectual property and intellectual property rights; how to obtain intellectual property rights protection in particular copyright and the associated rights. Questions on fair dealing and fair use; publishing rights; joint ownership/authorship of works; transfer of rights through assignment and licensing; jurisdiction for purposes of enforcement were tackled. Through the CIPIT Blog, we shall endeavor to inform on some of these issues in detail in our continuing IP series.
There are two (2) more sessions (further details) if you wish to attend simply send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to RSVP. Specify whether you wish to attend all the sessions or, if not, which specific sessions you wish to attend.
In our previous post, we addressed the law as is on Collective Management Organisations (CMO’s). Now we’ll analyze the proposed amendments to the Copyright Act and what they mean to the copyright holders and users in Kenya.
Copyright Amendment Bill (‘Bill’)
This analysis will focus on proposed sections 46 A (10) (11) (12) B-G and 49 of the Bill.
The Strathmore Law Clinic kick-started an initiative known as the Ubunifu Initiative. This initiative is a project of the Intellectual Property Division of the Strathmore Law Clinic (website here) that is aimed at promoting the effective use and exploitation of creativity and innovation through the development and sensitization of intellectual property law. The initiative was organized as a series of four weekly sessions scheduled on Fridays in the month of August and September. During the sessions, the attendees shall engage in discussions about what Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) This included what IPRs are; which IPRs would be of interest to them; which IPRs they might already hold; how to secure, protect and register IPRs in Kenya. The conversation will extend to sessions on how to maximize IPR benefits; dealing with government regulators and their specific requirements and any other area of that may be of interest to those in attendance that they wish to address (further details)
From our previous post, we have described the various Collective Management Organizations’ (CMO’s) in Kenya. Briefly, CMOs are not-for-profit membership entities authorized by Kenya Copyright Board (KECOBO) to carry out the business of copyright collection on behalf of their members. Their operations of the CMO’s are regulated by the Members, KECOBO and Law.
As part of CIPIT’s daily interactions with creatives, the Centre is embarking on an Intellectual Property explainer series. Tailor-made for creators.No legalese, no jargon. Just practical information. The main focus of these blogs is the various Collective Management Organisations (CMO’s) that operate in Kenya. In this blog, Cynthia Nzuki,introduces what CMO’s are, what they do and whether they are effectively and efficiently managing copyright on behalf of their members.
By Cynthia Nzuki*
Collective Management Organizations (CMOs) are private not-for-profit entities licensed to collect and distribute royalties for and among its members. In Kenya, there are presently five main CMO’s licensed by the Kenya Copyright Board (KECOBO), as mandated by the Copyright Act of Kenya. They are:
The Reproduction Rights Society of Kenya (KOPIKEN),
Kenya is set to have its sixth census since independence beginning on the night of 24th August 2019. The 2019 census exercise will mark the first census to be conducted since the promulgation of the 2010 Constitution.
A census is the total process of collecting, compiling, evaluating, analyzing, and publishing demographic, social, and/or economic data at a specified time, pertaining to all persons in a country or a well-defined part of a country. Section 2 of the Statistics Act defines it as a statistical operation in which all units of the population of interest are enumerated. The census exercise generally entails the counting of all people in a country at a specified time.
CIPIT welcomes the publication of the Data Protection Bill by Kenya’s National Assembly. The center has been involved in policy development for the digital economy in Kenya and Africa at large. In 2014, CIPIT gave input to the African Union Convention on Cybersecurity and Personal Data Protection, emphasizing on the need to protect and promote the right to privacy. Since then, there has been massive development in the data economy in both the public and private sector. CIPIT has previously recommended a comprehensive data protection framework for Kenya.
The Centre has reviewed the proposed law and submitted comments to the Clerk of the National Assembly. From our interaction with micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in the digital space, we have observed that these entities work in extremely different circumstances from traditional enterprises. Some of them are one-person operations that outsource services such as accounting on a need basis. It would be difficult for them to comply with the registration requirements, compared to larger entities that have dedicated compliance departments. We, therefore, propose that as the Bill requires registration of data processors and controllers, the data protection framework be tiered, and that consideration be given to the type of data being handled by data processors and controllers.