Please note: Convergence magazine has been discontinued - this following is provided for archive information only.

Convergence is the publication of the Intellectual Property, Communications and Technology Section of the IBA. It provides current and incisive analysis of developments in the areas of information technology, intellectual property, media, the law relating to arts and culture, communications and outer space law.

 Google as publisher in Australia and the United Kingdom
September 2013

Kate Ballis and Veronica Scott (Melbourne, Australia)

Rapid advances in technology and a surge in the use of electronic communication have created new challenges for legal systems around the world. One emerging area of law that courts are considering with more frequency is liability for online publication. In the last 12 months, courts in Australia and the United Kingdom have made findings that United States-based Google Inc is the publisher of its Google Search results, Google Image results, Google AdWords, and its blog service, 


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 Sweden: opportunities and challenges with party standing as non-exclusive licensee
August 2013

Erik Ficks (Stockholm, Sweden)

In Sweden, unlike in many other jurisdictions, a non-exclusive licensee may initiate litigation for intellectual property infringements in its own name as a party to the proceedings and without joining with the proprietor as co-claimant. This goes for all IP rights, including trademarks and patents.


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 The court of public opinion: #TwitterandtheEnglishBar
July 2013

Alice Hawker (London, United Kingdom)

Solicitors, barristers, judges, jurors and clients are starting to use social media both personally and professionally. Service via Facebook by Stephenson Harwood, the effect of LinkedIn on anti-competition covenants in employment contracts and the breach of super injunctions on Twitter demonstrate that the legal world is not (and does not want to be) sheltered from technological developments.  


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 ISP liability for user-uploaded content – an Italian perspective
June 2013

Ernesto Apa and Federica De Santis (Milan/Rome, Italy)

In December 2012, the Milan Court of Appeals ruled in favor of three Google executives in the ‘Google Vividown’ case – finding them ‘not guilty’ of unlawful data processing pursuant to Italian data protection laws. The case stemmed from a video showing an autistic boy being bullied, which was then uploaded to the Google Video platform. This case debated the issue on whether, and to what extent, ISPs should be liable for third-parties’ infringements carried out via their systems, or instead whether they may rely on the liability exemptions under the E-commerce Decree.


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 Brazil’s new law is not tough enough to fight electronic crimes
May 2013

Professor Renato Opice Blum (São Paulo, Brazil)

After 15 years of discussion, Brazil’s government has enacted a law that typifies computer-related crimes and covers important issues such as electronic device invasion, unauthorisedremote access and interruption of web services.

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 How the IBA is facilitating the development of ‘Information Law’
April 2013

Christopher Rees (London, UK)

Information as an asset class has outstripped all other forms of property and this throws up the challenge for us as lawyers; that the law will need to adapt both its forms of protection and redress to accommodate this phenomenon.


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 Crossroads of preliminary injunction proceedings and patent revocation action in Hungary
March 2013

Eszter Szakács (Budapest, Hungary)

Protecting market exclusivity by preliminary injunction is a crucial matter to pharmaceutical patent owners in Hungary just as much as anywhere else, and avoiding it is equally important to their opponents. 


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 Graphene patent wars heat up 
February 2013

[Editor's note: this article first appeared in Global Insight online articles - news analysis, January 2012] 

Arthur Piper (Nottingham, UK)

If the number of patents for a new technology is anything to go by, graphene is one of the hottest nanotech developments to emerge so far. There were over 7,350 patents on the carbon-based material by the end of December 2012, with 18 per cent of those filed in the previous 12 months, according to a study by the technology strategy company Cambridge IP.


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 Intermediary liability under Indian law: Twitter
January 2013

Rodney D Ryder and Ashwin Madhavan (New Delhi, India)

A look at the various liability issues that could be raised in India in terms of content on Twitter. This article discusses the legal risks that apply, or potentially apply, to users of Twitter. It also considers Twitter as an entity if it fails to remove objectionable content posted by its users on its website.


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 Regulating IP rights for DJs in Spain
December 2012

José Domínguez Leandro, Rodrigo González Ruiz and María Peligro Formoso (Madrid, Spain)

DJs have become very influential within music scene, but their relevance from an artistic or commercial point of view has not been matched by regulation, considering the impact that DJs have on recording industry. As a consequence, DJs in Spain have been (and still are) ignored by intellectual property legislation, leading to a legal vacuum that is damaging for all those involved in music industry.


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 Compulsory licensing under the Indian patent system: a potential growth driver for industries
November 2012

Mustafa Motiwala, Barasha Baruah Pathak and Shruti Thampi (Mumbai, India)

Until recently, the provisions of compulsory licensing - though in place under Indian patent law for some years - did not get much attention. However, compulsory licensing came to the forefront in discussions across the manufacturing sector - particularly in the pharmaceutical industry - when the Controller of Patents in India passed a landmark order pertaining to compulsory licensing on 9 March 2012. 


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  ‘Content is king’: using the Competition and Consumer Act to regulate ‘net neutrality’ and access to content in Australia
October 2012

Chris Taylor (Sydney, Australia)

The ability to control content has become the latest battleground in the struggle for access to consumers in a convergent online marketplace. This paper uses an Australian case study to present an alternative to the current trend of regulating access to content.



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