With legislators still struggling to craft an appropriate solution to the hot-button issue of digital copyright enforcement, the Obama administration has extended an olive branch to the general public in hopes of inspiring productive conversations.
In a White House blog post, U.S. Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator Victoria Espinel cited gathering public input as her office's most pressing priority. An advisory bulletin has since been posted in the Federal Register directing citizens to a new online forum on which they can transparently submit and view suggested approaches for improving IP enforcement.
"I believe that essential to the development of an effective enforcement strategy, is ensuring that any approaches that are considered to be particularly effective as well as any concerns with the present approach to intellectual property enforcement are understood by policymakers," Espinel stated. "Recommendations may include, but need to be limited to: legislation, regulation, guidance, executive order, presidential memoranda or other executive action."
Skeptics may still fear the influence of congressional lobbyists, according to GigaOM, but at the very least this new open forum establishes accountability in the sense that lawmakers can no longer claim opposing viewpoints were never raised.