Happy World Intellectual Property Day! The folks that make their living off of intellectual property are using the day to remind the world - and especially Congress - about the need to provide additional protections for copyrighted content and trademarked goods.
"Respect for intellectual property is essential to the success of nations that aspire to greater development as well as key to maintaining the economies of developed nations," former Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn., who is now head of the Motion Picture Association of America, said in a statement.
"World Intellectual Property Day is a time to reflect on the economic as well as cultural contributions intellectual creativity has produced and renew our commitment to value intellectual creation as we do physical creation."
The House and Senate Judiciary committees are expected to offer legislation this year to give law enforcement officials extra tools to crack down websites that offer pirated content or counterfeit goods, particularly those based abroad.
At a Capitol Hill event Tuesday representatives from the Association for Competitive Technology and the Chamber of Commerce's Global Intellectual Property Center tried to persuade a room full of congressional staffers to push their bosses to support the legislation.
Gina Vetere with the chamber's Global Intellectual Property Center said the U.S. needs to work harder to get other countries to protect U.S. intellectual property.
"We need to lead by example," Vetere said.
Senate Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., is expected to introduce a new version of legislation he offered last Congress aimed at cracking down on rogue foreign websites that offer pirated content or counterfeit products. A spokeswoman for Leahy said she does not know when the bill will be reintroduced but wouldn't rule out the possibility that he may offer it before the Memorial Day break.
There is no word yet on when the House Judiciary Committee will offer its version of legislation. However, Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., whose Intellectual Property, Competition, and the Internet Subcommittee is taking the lead on the issue for the panel, told Tech Daily Dose earlier this month that the House Judiciary bill would differ from what Leahy offered last Congress.