SIIA Sets Its Legislative Priorities for 2015

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A new Congress and a reinvigorated Administration mean legislation of interest to SIIA’s members is likely to pass in 2015.  We intend to be pro-active and vigilant to ensure that this legislation responds to the broad public interest, including preserving and advancing the business interests and opportunities of SIIA’s member companies.

In the area of intellectual property policy, the time is now to enact meaningful and effective legislation to curb patent litigation abuse.  As was the case in prior years, SIIA intends to devote substantial time and energy to enactment of this legislation.  The copyright policy review undertaken by the House Judiciary Committee under Chairman Goodlatte will continue in 2015.  As part of this process, SIIA will urge Congress to consider steps to modernize the Copyright Office and will oppose efforts to broaden the first sale doctrine.

Education policy promises to be busy in 2015.  President Obama praised the student privacy pledge sponsored by SIIA and the Future of Privacy Forum. He also intends to seek Federal legislation on student privacy.  SIIA will devote substantial resources to getting student privacy right as Federal and state legislation is considered in 2015. Reauthorizations of the Elementary & Secondary Education Act and Higher Education Act are also a priority for SIIA this year and are likely to advance.

In international policy, SIIA intends to focus on working with U.S. and EU officials to make sure that the Safe Harbor Framework is renewed in a way that continues to allow data to flow across the Atlantic.  We will also focus on getting Trade Promotion Authority through Congress so as to allow successful completion of the Transpacific Partnership and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.  Both of these trade agreements have important provisions preserving cross-border data flows.  In addition, SIIA will focus on improving accountability for the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).

In technology policy, we will pursue several critical priorities.  We will continue to focus on big data and maximizing the opportunities for data-driven innovation.  We will be leading supporters of legislation to enhance sharing cyber threat information and providing for a national data breach notification policy, two areas where we have seen a strong push from both the Administration and Congress.  We will also continue to promote reform of the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) and reform to national surveillance laws that adequately balances critical U.S. national security objectives and privacy needs.

This year will be a time of challenges and opportunities for SIIA to forward the interests of its members in these important public policy areas.

Mark Mark MacCarthy, Senior Vice President, Public Policy at SIIA, directs SIIA’s public policy initiatives in the areas of intellectual property enforcement, information privacy, cybersecurity, cloud computing and the promotion of educational technology. Follow Mark on Twitter at @Mark_MacCarthy.