WASHINGTON, DC — November 28, 2012 —
BSA | The Software Alliance today urged the Obama Administration and Congress to accelerate the software-driven IT economy and create jobs by protecting intellectual property rights, advancing a digital trade agenda that opens global markets, and fostering the growth of cloud computing.
General Counsel and other executives from 17 BSA member companies began outlining their agenda Wednesday in a series of meetings with key Members of Congress and Administration officials as part of BSA’s two-day 2012 Global Strategy Summit in Washington, DC.
“The immediate priority in Washington is steering away from the ‘fiscal cliff.’ But everyone’s ultimate concern is sustaining economic growth and recovery — and the software industry has a great deal to contribute,” said BSA President and CEO Robert Holleyman. “If policymakers focus on protecting intellectual property rights, opening global markets to digital trade, and fostering the growth of cloud computing products and services, then the software industry can help accelerate the growth of the digital economy.”
Software executives outlined key goals for the Administration and Congress to pursue in trade forums such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TTP) to ensure overseas markets are open to all the products and services that define the information age. They argued that key priorities for trade negotiators should include ensuring agreements like the TPP guarantee data can flow freely across international borders so cloud services can flourish on a global scale and extending world-class intellectual property protections. The executives also called for ending compulsory transfers of intellectual property, eliminating market-skewing procurement preferences, and embracing industry-led international technology standards.
“The United States needs to work with its trading partners to strengthen intellectual property rights and eliminate market obstacles that block cloud-era products and services,” Holleyman said. “We are seeing governments around the world start to chop up the international cloud market by inhibiting the flow of data across borders and requiring service providers to build local data centers. That limits choice and competition in the marketplace, and it undermines the economies of scale the cloud can offer. The TPP and other trade agreements need to chart a different course to ensure the digital economy reaches its full potential in the cloud era.”
To demonstrate US leadership in bolstering the legal and market foundations of the digital economy, BSA member company executives called on lawmakers and Administration officials to update the 1986 Electronic Communications Privacy Act to simplify, clarify, and unify the legal standards and civil protections governing law enforcement access to email and other digital records. They also stressed the importance of strengthening the country’s cybersecurity capabilities by marshaling market forces to promote rapid innovation and adaptation in the face of a constantly evolving threat landscape.
Represented at the two-day summit event were BSA member companies Adobe, Apple, Autodesk, Bentley Systems, CA Technologies, Dell, Intuit, McAfee, Microsoft, Minitab, Oracle, Progress Software, Quest Software, Rosetta Stone, Siemens, Symantec, and The MathWorks. The software executives were scheduled to meet Wednesday and Thursday with key Administration officials and leading Members of Congress, including:
- US Trade Representative Ron Kirk;
- Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), Ranking Member of the Finance Committee;
- Chief Deputy House Majority Whip Peter Roskam (R-Ill.);
- Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), Chairman of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Intellectual Property;
- House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) and Ranking Member Dutch Ruppersberger (D-Md.);
- Deputy Attorney General James Michael Cole;
- Deputy National Security Advisor for International Economic Affairs and Development Michael Froman;
- US Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator Victoria Espinel; and
- US Patent and Trademark Office Chief of Staff Peter Pappas.
BSA |The Software Alliance ( www.bsa.org ) is the leading global advocate for the software industry. It is an association of world-class companies that invest billions of dollars annually to create software solutions that spark the economy and improve modern life. Through international government relations, intellectual property enforcement and educational activities, BSA expands the horizons of the digital world and builds trust and confidence in the new technologies driving it forward.