Daniel Marti announced in his first public speech since he was confirmed in early March as the White House’s Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator that he had an “ambitious agenda” for fighting IP piracy.
Marti noted that intellectual property was responsible for tens of millions of US jobs, 60% of US exports, and 35% of the gross domestic product.
According to the Washington Post, Marti’s position
coordinates U.S. law-enforcement strategy around copyright, patents and trademarks. The coordinator’s duties, somewhat controversial from the start, include harmonizing the enforcement activities of several federal agencies under the White House’s Joint Strategic Plan on Intellectual Property Enforcement.
The position was established in 2008 but had been vacant since 2013. Marti’s appointment as IP “czar” is thus good news for IP owners.
Fighting Trade Secret Theft
Marti said in a speech before the US Chamber of Commerce that he would propose “new executive actions and legislative recommendations to Congress to help curb the theft of U.S. trade secrets.” Marti also said that online trade secret theft “threatens American businesses, undermines our national security and places the health of the U.S. economy in jeopardy.” He referred to President Obama’s recent executive action allowing the government to impose sanctions on individuals or groups that help others obtain trade secrets stolen via data breaches.
Marti also said that he would support patent reform and assure that US intellectual property was protected in trade deals now being negotiated.
Marti commented that as a former aspiring poet he identifies with the creative community, but that attitudes about intellectual property infringement need to change:
We must reject a cultural indifference about what constitutes a crime on the Internet. We must work together to prevent those who seek to exploit this environment for their own profit. We cannot turn a blind eye when somebody robs a person of their creative expressions, simply because the theft occurs online.
Marti came to his post as a managing partner for a leading intellectual property firm, where he “represented clients in a wide range of cases involving trademarks, false advertising, unfair competition, copyrights, trade secrets, cybersquatting and computer fraud and abuse matters,” according to the Post. He was confirmed unanimously after two Senate confirmation hearings.
His speech can be viewed here.