Last Updated on October 10, 2014, 3:35 pm ET
On October 1, 2014, El Salvador became the second country to ratify the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who are Blind, Visually Impaired, or Otherwise Print Disabled, adopted at Marrakesh on June 27, 2013. India was the first country to ratify the treaty on June 24, 2014.
The treaty sets forth minimum standards for limitations and exceptions designed to facilitate access to accessible format works for persons who are blind, visually impaired or otherwise print disabled. It would also permit cross-border sharing of these accessible format works, allowing countries to avoid unnecessary duplication of efforts in the creation of accessible format works and also facilitate the importation of works in other languages.
Eighteen more ratifications are needed for the treaty to enter into force. The United States, which has robust limitations and exceptions allowing for the creation and distribution of accessible format works, signed the treaty in October 2013, but the treaty has not yet been sent to the Senate for ratification.