Bill 510 On Copyright Protection Receiving Mixed Reviews

Thursday, September 27 2012 @ 10:06 am EDT

Contributed by: Don Winner

Bill 510 on copyright protections, recently approved by the National Assembly, should receive a partial veto, because four of it's Articles were not in the original document. This was stated on Thursday morning, 27 September 2012, on TVN news by the promoter and producer Chris Fawcett, who insisted that the ideal would be for the president to not sign this Bill, and for the National Assembly to pass a new law - one that is more open - covering copyright and related rights.

The promoter and producer said upon reviewing this law, the General Direction of Authors would investigate who uploads content without paying for the rights, but it does not define how they would accomplish this. In that regard, it adds to the fears that a person's rights could be violated, in the case of a baseless investigation.

On the other hand, he said the law is good, in that it proves for regulation against cases of piracy taking place in the country. But also, the law should specify a table, to be used as a guide, on what type of intellectual property offense is assigned, stipulating a range of fines up to $100,000, which would be at the discretion of the officer to decide the amount of the sanction, Fawcett said. (Estrella)

Editor's Comment: So, there are good things and bad things in this law. What matters most in Panama are not the laws, but how they are applied in reality, on the ground. In this case, the National Assembly is just blasting through crap bills which are poorly written and not very well thought out, and the real goal is to implement the Free Trade Agreement with the United States. They can always go back and "tweak" this law later, to fix some of the flaws. I know, it's a hell of a way to do business, but it is what it is. This Bill is receiving mixed reviews, with most calling for a "partial" veto - meaning the President can cross out a few controversial Articles it contains.

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