Telecommunications law from around the world

A work in progress, works cited under development.

As telecommunications networks have become more sophisticated, so has the law of telecommunications evolved, with the Internet becoming a greater focus in an ever-increasing digital focus in the economy.  This report will briefly document early legislation and will progress to the present.  A report on data protection goes into more depth on a telecommunications law sub-topic.


International Telecommunications Convention of 1982 – this treaty established the International Telecommunications Union, a standards agency part of the United Nations that deals with communications technology and their development in member states.  In the first section of Article 4, the convention states as its first purpose:

a) to maintain and extend international cooperation between all Members of the Union for the improvement and rational use of telecommunications of all kinds, as well as to promote and to offer technical assistance to developing countries in the field of telecommunications

The treaty also covers the powers member state governments have over private use of communications technology, particularly if the use endangers national security or public order interests.  Article 20 details the powers member states have in suspending international telecommunications service.


Data Protection Directive, Directive 97/66/EC


United Kingdom – Telecommunications Act 1984, Communications Act 2003

United States – Telecommunications Act of 1996, Communications Decency Act

China – Telecommunications Regulations of the People’s Republic of China

With the greater focus in telecommunications in our lives, a potential concern for businesses is the effect of net neutrality legislation on the operation of the Internet.

Dealing with intellectual property is expensive – for everyone

A work in progress.

Whether protecting works or trying to defend oneself from infringement proceedings, dealing with intellectual property is expensive for all parties involved.  The legal advice, the filing procedures involved, and the potential court expenses all factor into what could be far too expensive for either a lone creator or an infringer lacking resources to deal with.

Intellectual property legislation from around the world

A work in progress, works cited under development.

This article takes a brief overview of the various legislation implemented around the world to protect and to benefit rights holders and to hold accountable rights infringers of intellectual property.  The legislation presented is non-exhaustive, but provides an overview of existing legislation and some of their key differences.



WIPO Treaties

Patent Law Treaty



Directive 2001/29/EC

Electronic Commerce (EC Directive) Regulations 2002, SI 2002/2013

European Community Trademark Act

European Patent Convention


United Kingdom – Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1989, Trade Marks Act of 1994, Patents Act 1977

United States – Copyright Act of 1976, Digital Millennium Copyright Act, Lanham Act, Trademark Dilution Revision Act of 2006, Patent Act of 1952, American Inventors Protection Act

China – Copyright Law of the People’s Republic of China, Trademark Law of the People’s Republic of China, Patent Law of the People’s Republic of China

A key harmonizing factor in all of the legislation regarding intellectual property is the implementation of various international treaties and accession to various international and intergovernmental organizations.  This factor makes the protection and infringement of intellectual property rights streamlined, efficient, and possible to deal with worldwide, though such protection and infringement handling does not come without a hefty cost.

A look at data protection from around the world

A work in progress, works cited under development.

This paper will focus on legislation in the European Union, the United Kingdom, China, and the United States.  In summary, we will be able to see some of the key differences in the various legislation, but more importantly we will be up to date on these increasingly important laws that affect the way our personal information is used around the world.

Data Protection Directive, Directive 95/46/EC and Data Protection Directive, Directive 97/66/EC

Enacted in 1995 and in 1997, these European Union directives act to harmonize member state legislation in the data protection arena.

Data Protection Act 1988, United Kingdom

Although enacted before the EU directive above, this is the main piece of legislation guiding data protection in the UK.

Data protection in China

Only relatively recently has a framework for data protection laws developed in China.

Data protection in the United States

Rather than using a central framework approach to data protection laws, the United States allows business to flourish, taking issues into account as doing so becomes necessary.  Therefore, there is detailed legislation in place, but the sectors for which they are in place vary widely.

There are other statutes and regulations in place that form the framework of data protection law, but the key to note is the approach different regions around the world have taken with regard to developing data protection laws and what implications this will have for a general “right to privacy.”

RaiBot Legal Blog Started

January 6, 2010 marks the start of the legal blog run under the brand RaiBot, formerly known as communications software for use over the Internet.

Covering news and trends, general publications, and opinions, the RaiBot Legal Blog will not bore anyone interested in media, technology, and infrastructure.  What makes it different is the focus on legal developments and their implications in these sectors.

Why a legal blog, and why under a brand known as communications software?

RaiBot, communications software, was created to allow its users to communicate in a user-friendly manner online.  The consumers ranged from computer novices to configuration experts.  It is with this idea in mind that the new blog runs: readers, no matter their background in the law, can enjoy reading this blog, and it will contain features to make the activity of doing so user-friendly.

Why the change in focus of the brand?

The reason for using the brand name of the software, which turned ten years old on Christmas Day of this year, is to mark a shift in the focus and the purpose of RaiBot as well as that of the creator’s career.  Rather than calling the blog a different name that has no prior history on the Internet, the RaiBot Legal Blog exists both to represent the previous communications work of RaiBot as well as serve as an extension to it in the form of legal knowledge.

Will rebranding work?

Understandably, it could be said this blog will dilute the RaiBot brand name, or it could even be said that this blog is marketing for the RaiBot communications software. Given the ongoing hiatus of the development and publication of the software, the brand will only be diluted over time as it is no longer in use, so the blog is making use of this existing brand and is in fact transforming it to sustain it.  Given the unashamed link between the identity of the brand and the creator, rebranding will certainly work.  The question is, will readers enjoy the content of this legal blog?  There is only one way to find out.