The administration has characterized the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement as “an ambitious, next-generation, Asia-Pacific trade agreement.” It is being negotiated with Australia, Brunei, Chile, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru Singapore and Vietnam — with Canada and Mexico as set to join.

CCIA’s View:

CCIA supports the speedy completion of a high-quality “21st century” Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement. A 21st-century agreement will contain provisions that permit the smooth functioning of the industry of the 21st century — the Internet. The Internet is visibly revolutionizing the way businesses — including small and medium enterprises — function. Without a smoothly functioning Internet, the negotiated provisions of TPP will not yield the desired gains for TPP citizens.

First, TPP must include balanced intellectual property rules. An intellectual property regime can allow technological progress only if it appropriately balances the competing interests between encouraging investment and enabling information access. Because the international trade regime has generally lacked flexible IP provisionis to promote innovation, it is necessary to modernize the IP provisions of the aging trade framework to be consistent with Internet and high-technology innovation.

Second, TPP should promote the free flow of information online, recognizing that blocking bits at the border is as much as affront to international free trade as blocking physical goods. The ability of U.S. businesses to operate effectively on a global scale depends fundamentally on open information flows. When foreign governments block online information, when businesses are impeded for using the Internet to reach international markets, when secure corporate communications are not assured, the collateral damage is done to U.S. exports and U.S. jobs.

Most Recent Statements&Findings:

Stimulating Bridges to Broadband

A new report from the Pew Center on States suggests that the biggest obstacle to bringing broadband Internet to Americans may just be Americans themselves. While the majority of Americans currently have access to broadband at home, suppliers are struggling to successfully bring higher speeds to rural areas and regions with lower incomes. The report suggests that…

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CCIA Releases IP Enforcement Strategy Questions

The Computer & Communications Industry Association is releasing a list of questions that should be asked as the Office of Intellectual Property Enforcement releases its strategy to coordinate IP enforcement across the federal government. If properly pursued, such a plan could be valuable, but if not implemented properly it could be a drag on innovation.…

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Cybersecurity Concerns Lead to House Support for Senate Leiberman-Collins-Carper Cybersecurity Bill

The U.S. House of Representatives’ Committee on Homeland Security (“HSC”) held a Wednesday morning hearing on “Cybersecurity: DHS’s Role, Federal Efforts and National Policy.” Archived video of the hearing is available here(Windows Media). A single panel appeared before HSC: (1) Greg Schaffer, Assistant Secretary, Cybersecurity and Communications, Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) (2) Richard Skinner, Inspector General, DHS (3) Gregory Wilshusen, Director,…

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IBM, TurboHercules and the Problems with the Patent System

One of CCIA’s smaller members, TurboHercules SAS, has received a lot of attention recently surrounding its antitrust dispute with IBM, especially because IBM has chosen to rattle its many patent sabers at this much smaller competitor by providing a list of 173 potentially infringed patents. What makes this story a little different from a classic patent shakedown is that TurboHercules…

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CCIA Praises FCC’s Request For Comments On Broadband Classification

The FCC has approved a formal process today to gather feedback on the FCC chairman’s proposal to narrowly reclassify the transmission component of broadband Internet access as a telecommunications service. FCC Chaiman Julius Genachowski’s so-called “third way” would excuse Internet Access Providers from price regulation, but it would limit their ability to discriminate and prioritize…

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CCIA Weighs In On FCC's "Third Way" Tonight On C-SPAN

The FCC’s proposed rules to protect non-discriminatory access to the Internet for households and small businesses are needed to ensure no Internet Access Provider regulates the Internet, said Computer & Communications Industry Association Vice President Cathy Sloan on a C-SPAN program this weekend.“The Communicators” program on the proposal to reclassify the transmission of high speed…

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