IP Scholars In 2013

By Kevin Nie, China IP,[Comprehensive Reports]

Guo Shoukang: well-respected jurisprudential authority

Professor Guo Shoukang is an internationally renowned Chinese scholar in IP community for his pioneer and founder role in the development of China’s IP jurisprudence and his achievement in legal education. It is beyond our admiration that he is still active in the frontier of China’s IP teaching and research at his age of 87. China IP journalists have been lucky to see him at many kinds of national and international academic forums or exchange activities.

The year of 2013 witnessed the 65th anniversary of Professor Guo as a law teacher and the publication of Selected Jurisprudential Works of Guo Shoukang. On September 15th 2013, a forum in congratulation of the anniversary and publication was held at Renmin University of China. Attendees at the forum included leaders from ministries and commissions under China’s State Council, courts and relevant associations, famous experts and scholars from universities and research institutions in Beijing, and delegates from IP industry and famous media.

Delegates reviewed the great achievements made by Prof. Guo in the promotion of China’s legislation, research and teaching, personnel training and other aspects and they extended sincere thanks to Prof. Guo for his great contribution to the development and advancement of China’s IP jurisprudence. It is agreed that Prof. Guo has made a good combination of China and the West, □ By Kevin Nie, China IP been indifferent to fame and wealth and sought for nothing but truth in his 65 years of teaching and research. His personal experience has shown a conveyance of spiritual quality and personal charisma, insistence on high pursuit in hardships, a simple and unadorned attitude towards being well-known at home and abroad, and a learned and refined style all the times.

The Selected Jurisprudential Works of Guo Shoukang contains dozens of papers published by Prof. Guo over the years, covering the basic theory of IP rights in patent, trademark, copyright and other fields. These articles are a record of Prof. Guo’s spiritual pursuits of his academic research over the past half century and summarization of his insights of IP. Experts agree that the publication of Selected Jurisprudential Works of Guo Shoukang will play a positive role in the promotion of China’s current IP development because it is of great significance in historical data on one hand and of positive enlightenment for its furtherance of research of China’s current IP cause and of exploration of China’s future IP cause development orientation on the other hand.

Prof. Guo said in the opening remark that the book is nothing but his exercise in composition and extends his appreciation to all friends of all circles for their assistance for the publication of the book. Attendees are moved by his speech.

Prof. Guo had fully participated in the drafting of China’s Patent Law, Trademark Law, Copyright Law, Anti- Unfair Competition Law and Regulation on Computers Software Protection. He is the sole scholar who had participated in the legislation of China’s all IP laws.

Prof. Guo has successively engaged in the teaching and research of civil law, international law, IP law, courses on IP law, technology transfer law, copyright law, comparative copyright law and international copyright law which he engaged in were opened for the first time in China. He is also the first Chinese scholar to lecture abroad on China’s IP law and foreign economic and trade law. He has published many books in Chinese, English and German. He was invited to make a special lecture on “Some Issues Related to China’s Accession to WTO and China’s Legislation” for the Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress. After being chosen as China’s national senior jurist by China Law Society in 2012, Prof. Guo was given by China IP magazine, China Daily and Copyright Society of China the Lifetime Achievement Award in property rights cause.

In the eyes of Chin IP’s journalist, Prof. Guo is not only a professor of great talent, but also a humble and respectable elder. When first asked for an interview, he agreed joyfully and gave a warm reception, a serious answer for each question, asked journalist their way to travel with concern and gave a detailed explanation of routes with patience. In spite of his senior age, Prof. Guo personally participated in the 3rd China IP Annual Forum organized by China IP magazine and encouraged the young generation to commit to the IP research and practice. It has been a heartwarming recall when thinking about this every time.

Tao Xinliang: half of a teacher is a lawyer and half of a scholar a doer

China IP journalist was astonished to receive the reply at two o’clock in the morning from Professor Tao Xinliang for this interview. It seemed that his busy work was beyond imagination in 2013, during which he had hopped from one city to another, from classroom to courtroom, from airport to conference-hall. That is to say, most time of his daily life in 2013 had been used for such activities.

“I majored in metallurgy when I was in college and management for postgraduate, and studied law by myself for many years. However, I took on the road of IP by accident. In 1985, I participated in national examination and became one of the first patent agents in China. And from then on, I have touched upon patent, trade secret, trademark and copyright, and almost everything of IP. I have been fond of them very much and I want to care them in the rest of my life.” When talking about his IP career in the past thirty years, Prof. Tao was full of emotion, “From teaching perspective, I am not a traditional teacher; from the lawyer perspective, I am not a pure lawyer. I think that half of a teacher is a lawyer and half of a scholar a doer and that they are complimentary to each other and have their independent development due to such intercomplementation. Maybe, that’s the real silhouette of my IP career in the past thirty years.”

In 1985, Tao Xinliang became the director of the Patent Agency of Shanghai University of Technology under the auspices of the University president Qian Wenchang. In 1994, he participated in the establishment of Intellectual Property Institute of Shanghai University and successively served as the vice dean, executive vice dean and dean. After being the dean of Tongji Intellectual Property Institute between 2009 and 2011, he returned to Shanghai University to serve as the dean of the Intellectual Property Institute up to present. In addition to being a scholar, Prof.

Tao has also acted as part-time arbitrator or domain meditation specialist for the China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission (CIETAC), the Shanghai Arbitration Commission, the Shanghai International Arbitration Center and others alike. He has also been a parttime IP lawyer. He has served as the vice chairman or executive member of Intellectual Property Law Committee of the All-China Lawyers Association over the past two decades. He has participated in more than one hundred patent applications as an agent, several hundred IP arbitration and meditation cases as an arbitrator and mediator, and more than five hundred IP litigation and arbitration cases as an agent.

Colleagues have a cordial comment on Prof. Tao that he has a good combination of theory and practice and is a good master of frontier advancement and current potentiality. Due to his pioneer practice and research in law, he participated in the legislation and amendment research of Contract Law, Patent Law, Trademark Law, Copyright Law, and the Law on Scientific and Technological Progress, the Law on Promoting the Transformation of Scientific and Technological Achievements and China’s other laws. He also participated in the formulation of China’s national IP strategy and its implementation research.

Rectify the misunderstanding of well-known trademark

After ten years of full consideration, the third amendment of China’s Trademark Law was adopted on August 30th 2013. It is in this amendment that the prohibited use of well-known trademark under the spotlight was added to the new Trademark Law, which provides that manufacturers and business operators shall neither indicate the words “well-known trademark” on goods and the packaging or containers of goods, nor use the same for advertising, exhibition and other commercial activities.

It was on the day that Prof. Tao made a comment on his own micro-blog that “alienation began to be corrected and an overcorrection is needed when necessary. After many times of insistence, the viewpoint yarned for many years is now being endorsed by the law at last. The misunderstanding has now elapsed and the maze has been the past. However, there are many difficulties in the ways to the future because ingrained habits cannot be cast off overnight.” In a few days, this micro-blog was reposted as many as 130,000 times.

Suggest the introduction of copyright licensing model on Internet

At the Fifth Chinese mainland, Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan Symposium on Copyright Licensing Model on Internet.” He said he might put forward a piece of nearly “subversive” legislative proposal, which was awarded high evaluations by Yao Hong, the director of Civil Law of China’s NPC Standing Committee and other experts present.

“The volume licensing and infringement upon massive works and authors have been difficult problems in the field of copyright across the world for the extensive collective copyright management system to tackle with, although they have frequently discussed in recent years. The frequently explored orphan work system has been difficult to implement in the application of compulsory licensing or statutory licensing. The traditional forward copyright licensing mechanism has been far from the requirement of current speed of internet information dissemination and knowledge diffusion. A report released by the U.S. Copyright Office pointed out that the efficiency of the original copyright licensing mechanism was far below that of technological dissemination on internet, which has been an important reason for consumers to choose piracy.” Prof. Tao has his suggestion on this issue that “in order to solve this problem, we should make full use of ultra-technical capabilities and strong dissemination function of the internet, and make a necessary adjustment of traditional copyright licensing system arrangement. For the general works, it would be better to have a reverse innovation of new model for copyright licensing on basis of internet publication.”

Prof. Tao told China IP journalist, “One of the significant signs of knowledge economy is to recognize that knowledge diffusion is as same important as knowledge innovation. I hope China’s legislation can break the inertia of thinking and institutional inertia. The third amendment of Copyright Law is a brave and good pioneer in this regard because it made a full exploitation of internet technology to bring about timely favor to mankind and established a speedy reverse copyright licensing model on basis of internet publication.”

Liu Chuntian: another year of busyness and harvest

The year of 2013 was a good harvest for Professor Liu Chuntian. At the beginning of this year, he was awarded as 2012 China IP Most Influential people by China IP magazine and China Daily. In the midyear, he was successfully nominated as a top global 50 figure with IP influence. At the end of this year, he was awarded the title of the excellent doer of China copyright cause at sixth China Copyright Annual Conference. These honors have been good and appropriate recognizance of the long-term commitment made by Prof. Liu to IP law teaching and research.

After being the chairman of China Intellectual Property Law Society in 2012, Prof. Liu have exerted all his strength and wisdom, proceeded with determination and made continuous efforts to promote all kinds of academic exchange activities of the society. In the past year, he hosted three professional forums, actively participated in other forums in respect of IP industry, and published his academic insights.

On August 10th 2013, the forum on IP protection model with Chinese characteristics was jointly held in Shenzhen by China Intellectual Property Law Society, the IP Tribunal of China’s Supreme Court, and the Theoretical Research Bases for the Judicial Protection of Intellectual Property set up by China’s Supreme Court at Shenzhen University. Prof. Liu pointed out in his address that this forum would, under the theme of innovation-driven development put forward in the 18th CPC national congress, stress the legal guarantee in compliance with social and economic development and system arrangement. Prof. Liu thought that the disagreement on China’s current IP protection model came from the way of thinking featured by planned regime at some departments who brought it to market economy administration, resulting in a phenomenon of lacking a comprehensive arrangement and of finding themselves in an unaccustomed climate. Therefore, he earnestly hoped that scholars put forward advices with insights on all aspects of China’s future IP model design for a good development.

At the first Zhongguancun International Forum on Intellectual Property held in October 2013, Prof. Liu specifically pointed out that although China’s General Principle of Civil Law explicitly includes IP right as a kind of property rights, China’s Criminal Law stipulates that crimes of infringing upon IP fall within the third chapter titled by crimes of undermining the socialist market economic order instead of being included in the fifth chapter titled by crimes of property violation. Such stipulations run contrary to each other. Thus, he called for a necessary adjustment of current legal system in order to make it more integrated.

Prof. Liu also says that IP law is not a kind of metaphysics, but a legal discipline related to the real property rights. Therefore, it will be of real significance when IP rights are transformed into real productive forces.

From November 2nd to 3rd 2013, the forum on Intellectual Property and Innovation-driven Development and the 2013 Annual Conference of China Intellectual Property Law Society was held in Hangzhou. Prof. Liu made a keynote speech themed“Center Around The Innovation-Driven Development For Prosperity Of Legal Research On Intellectual Property Right” and pointed out that China’s IP researcher should be aware of this situation and take full advantage of such opportunity. The situation is the combination of innovationdriven development put forward in the 18th CPC national congress and IP development strategy. After being aware of such situation, we should take advantage of the opportunity of improving China’s IP system by way of releasing the dividends of creativity. Specifically speaking, we should pay attention to the following aspects: a continuous, enduring and in-depth IP research from the perspective of IP basic theory and legal system, a furtherance in IP discipline development, a historical carding of IP jurisprudence, more participation in the legislation and amendment of all kinds of concrete IP laws, more attention on the localization and internationalization of IP system and a reasonable view of national conditions and international outlook, keeping abreast with the new orientation of international IP law development, active and prudent promotion of IP law diplomacy, serious study on businesses, judicial practice and economic development related to intellectual property, more attention on practice and industry development and others, and etc.

From November 16th to 17th 2013, the first Asia-Pacific Intellectual Property Forum co-initiated by Renmin University of China and several famous universities from the Asia- Pacific region was held in Suzhou. Due to the vigorously promotion and direct organization by Prof. Liu and other scholars, the forum attracted more than 200 experts, scholars, officials and business people from the U.S., Canada, Japan, Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan, WIPO and Chinese mainland. The theme for this forum was the “globalization and localization of the intellectual property system” and attendees had comprehensive and in-depth discussions on the development and innovation of IP system, trade and IP protection and other issues.

Prof. Qu: the conversion of multiple roles

Professor Qu Sanqiang had been too busy in 2013 to have time to make a selfreview and summary. However, China IP journalist was lucky to participate in several major events hosted by Prof. Qu in 2013 and will, from a perspective of observer, have a real record of his year log as an IP scholar and head of IP-related agency.

As the dean of Law School of Beijing Institute of Technology, Prof. Qu has arduous tasks in teaching and research and administrative affairs. Over the past year, he organized and completed two major issues and published two textbooks. By the end of October 2013, the Beijing Municipal Commission of Education announced the assessment results of 2013 Beijing higher education quality textbooks and classic textbooks. Modern Copyright Law with Prof. Qu as the chief editor was among the list of 2013 Beijing higher education quality textbooks.

Before Prof. Qu became the dean, Law School of Beijing Institute of Technology had been relatively weak in IP law teaching and research because it had only two professional teachers. Now the number is six and it has a relatively scientific systematic structure of good age rank of teachers.

One of the biggest gains acquired by Prof. Qu in 2013 is the founding of the Institute of Intellectual Property Protection at Z-Park. It was co-founded by famous experts from Peking University, China University of Political Science and Law, Beijing Institute of Technology and other universities, bringing together national elites from theory and practice circles in terms of IP legal protection. Its purpose is to promote the national IP strategy, to further technological and cultural exchanges, to provide with direct service in the Zhongguancun Science Park, and to conduct research on IP legislation, law enforcement and judicature in coordination with relevant governmental and judicial departments. As the main facilitator and founding dean of the Institute, Prof. Qu said that with the development of science and technology as well as literary and arts, IP would play an increasingly important role and become an indispensable content of people’s lives; that due to such reason, China’s IP cause needs a large number of people with a sense of responsibility and mission to seek the truth, to explore the nature and law of IP rights, and to realize the positive value of IP under the guidance of the concept of fairness and justice in order to actively play their positive energy to serve the people and benefit the mankind.

Prof. Qu also actively participated in the establishment preparation of the Intellectual Property Law Society of Beijing Law Society and served as its executive vice chairman. On October 19th 2013, the first congress of the Society was held in Beijing. It gets strong support from Judicial and Law Enforcement Committee of Beijing Municipal Committee. It is under the direct leadership of the Beijing Law Society, co-initiated by the Beijing Second Intermediate People’s Court, Beijing Intellectual Property Office, Law School of Beijing Institute of Technology, the Law Institute of Beijing Academy of Social Science, the Institute of Intellectual Property Protection at Z-Park, Beijing College of Politics and Law, and other units. Its purpose is, under the guidance of socialist theory system with Chinese characteristics and socialist idea of rule of law and in close contact with practice, to unite IP jurists and practitioners in Beijing, to conduct legal research and legal exchange activities, to promote the development of IP jurisprudence, to play a professional functional role of IP legal research and practice and to make positive contribution to the construction, development, social civilization and progress in Beijing. The found of the Society makes up the defects of Beijing for its long-term lack of IP law society although it had been abundant with numerous IP talents and rich practice experience.

In 2013, Prof. Qu participated in many international exchange activities. In March 2013, Yu Byonghan, the chairman of Korea Copyright Commission, and Young-Gil Park, the chairman of Korea-China Society of Intellectual Property and their party made a visit to Law School of Beijing Institute of Technology. Prof. Qu served the delegation and chaired the lecture under the title of “Copyright in Intelligent Digital Environment.” Both parties had discussions on the current conditions of copyright in intelligent digital environment, the problems and its solutions, Korean copyright law and its managerial mechanism and others. From 5th to 6th December 2013, Prof. Qu went to Korea by the invitation of Korea Copyright Commission and participated in the international seminar on the theme of “Exploring New Equilibrium Point for Copyright System.” This seminar was jointly organized by the Korea Copyright Commission, Korea- China Society of Intellectual Property and Wonkwang University, at where scholars from China and Korea made exchanges on the latest development in their respective copyright laws.

In October 25th 2013, Prof. Qu went to Italy upon invitation for the Thirteenth Annual Meeting of Intellectual Property Rights held at the University of Parma and made a keynote speech on relevant China’s laws and policies. It is known that the annual meeting is one of the most important meetings in the filed of IP law in Italy and the topic of year’s meeting is IP protection of China’s furniture industry. Participants include prestigious judges, scholars, IP lawyers and IP directors at companies from China and Italy.

Zheng Shengli: a witness of China’s IP development in the past three decades

As a renowned scholar in China’s IP law circle, Professor Zheng Shengli has engaged in IP law for thirty years since 1980s. After graduation from Department of Geophysics of Peking University, Prof. Zhen interned in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and had been a visiting scholar at the University of Washington, the University of Tokyo, the University of London, the University of Lausanne, the Max Planck Institute for Intellectual Property in Munich and WIPO. He has served as the head of Intellectual Property School of Peking University, the Vice Chairman of China Intellectual Property Law Society of China Law Society, the vice chairman of China Written Works Copyright Society, the Member of Standing Committee of Beijing Municipal Committee of the CPPCC, the specially invited prosecutor of China’s Supreme People’s Procuratorate. He is now the professor and doctoral supervisor at Peking University and the vice chairman of China Intellectual Property Law Society of China Law Society.

In March 2013, Prof. Zheng also promoted the establishment of the Institute of Intellectual Property Protection at Z-Park and served as its honorary chairman. Now, Prof. Zheng is in his seventies and still in the bustle of IP legal research and academic exchange programs. The Institute of Intellectual Property Protection at Z- Park was coincorporated by famous experts from Peking University, China University of Political Science and Law, Beijing Institute of Technology and other universities. Originally, i t aims a t bringing together national elites from theory and practice circles in terms of IP legal protection for joint legal research on IP rights. Later on, it has been extended to be a public platform for personnel from the circles of economy, business and trade, science and technology to have interdisciplinary exchanges and co-operations. There is no conflict of departmental interests and no disciplinary bias. The institute received strong support from relevant government departments and social communities, and extensive participation from the circles of legal theory, practitioners, economics, high-tech industry and research institutes. The main reason for its success is that it is just in line with the innovation-driven development strategy put forward in the 18th CPC national congress. Both jurists and economists should now take such strategy into consideration and find ways to implement, study the ways to have an industrial transfer from resource-driven and labor-driven to innovation-driven model. Prof. Qu thinks that there should be indexation research on innovation driven and relatively objective research reports. The institute is designed to be a platform for experts of all circles to have their free show and everyone is welcomed for his program.

(Translated by Yuan Renhui)


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