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Patently Absurd

Annihilation of caste and copyright claims

Issue Date: Apr 30, 2014
With the recent publication of a new edition of B R (Babasaheb) Ambedkar’s searing work, Annihilation of Caste (AoC) there is furious debate over the “appropriation” of one of India’s most significant thinkers by those beyond the pale. The unseemly furore has been occasioned by the fact that neither the publisher of the annotated critical edition of AoC Siriyavan Anand of Navayana nor Arundhati Roy, who has written a solid 124-page introduction, titled The Doctor and the Saint, is a Dalit.

Patently hollow claims of the US

Issue Date: Mar 31, 2014
The battle has been joined—although not as evenly as one would wish. The relentless US assault on India’s regulatory policies, in particular those dealing with intellectual property rights (IPRs), has evoked a sharp riposte from global organisations and academics who maintain that New Delhi’s policies are fully compliant with international trade requirements.

Spy versus spy and high tech gizmos

Issue Date: Mar 15, 2014
Early in February, the Chaos Computer Club (CCC) filed a criminal complaint against the German government for helping foreign intelligence organisations, the National Security Agency (NSA) and the British Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), to spy on Germans and thus violating the citizens’ right to privacy.

Trademarks, jai ho!

Issue Date: Jan 15, 2014
One of the weirdest cases of copyright violation of a song relates to the all-time favourite Happy Birthday To You. There was surprise worldwide when in June 2013 a film production company filed a lawsuit seeking to overturn the copyright on the song, which it said was not legal anyway.

Big blue trips up Twitter

Issue Date: Nov 30, 2013

Trail of a $500 m gene

Issue Date: Nov 15, 2013
Four years ago, Australian scientists succeeded in isolating a gene from a lesser known strain of algae that could convert carbon dioxide into high-grade fuel. It was a breakthrough with tremendous commercial potential and the researchers were, naturally, elated, specially since it brought with it the promise of sustainable clean fuel.

Patent hypocrisies of US

Issue Date: Sep 30, 2013
It is not usual for ambassadors to write a newspaper blog to defend their country’s policies.
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