Dec 09
WIPO TECHNICAL WORKSHOP SIDELIGHTS by Alex J. Socorro  |  Posted in Articles  |  on Fri, Dec 9, 2011

Part 2

WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization) based in Geneva, Switzerland, aims to strengthen the copyright protection of participating countries by way of the WIPOCOS software which was developed by WIPO.

The participants of the technical workshop were well taken care of by host WIPO Singapore. Courtesy of IT head Kyaw Zaw, each country was provided a computer unit linked to the local network which was a great convenience for the hands-on sessions.

The ongoing session of the WIPOCOS technical workshop in the WIPO office Singapore.

Sessions started at 9:00 am and ended at past 5:00 pm. The hotel bus takes the 17 participants including the 4 resource persons to and from the WIPO office. The scenic trip, from the hotel to and from WIPO office, takes about 30 minutes.

The shuttle to and from the hotel and WIPO office. Behind WIPO Senior Advisor Simon Ouedraogo are Jean Teoh of Malaysia and Manzurur Rahman of Bangladeshi (partly hidden). Another seat back are the Indonesians Djanuar Ishak and Fadiel Wardhana.

Park Hotel Clarke Quay, where participants were billeted, can be considered classy with the room rate of 247 Singapore dollars per night for a single occupancy. The hotel boasts of its 50-year track record of hospitality.

Speaking of hotel rates, Sherub Gyaltshen intimated that Zhiwa Ling hotel in Paro Valley of Bhutan costs US$250 per night. On the contrary, Baburam Dahal said they have $5 hotels in Nepal. For the Philippines, Taal Vista Lodge in Tagaytay charges US$100 per night for double occupancy.

Last day photo in Park Hotel: Alex Socorro of the Philippines, Vietnam’s To Van Long, Cambodia’s Sarady Sin and Yothin Chhay, Lao PDR’s Parita Sengtanthr, Bhutan’s Sherub Gyelsthen, Indonesia’s Djanuar Ishak

At the WIPO office, there was no boring moment in the sessions despite the difficulty of using the English language by some participants. It is amazing that the Africans have a good command of the lingua franca.

To Van Long, Vietnam Copyright Division head, shared with me an excerpt of the Vietnam law that gives copyright protection to the works of movie directors, editors, cameramen, stage managers, composers, art-designers, sound-men, lighting-men, studio artists, studio-instrument managers, high-tech makers and others doing creative jobs.

According to Cambodian Sarady Sin, Mr. Long had been to Cambodia during the war period. Mr. Long admitted that he was indeed a soldier at the time but he was assigned in the office to handle the radio broadcasting.

As for Singapore in general, the participants were disappointed because there was no nightlife. But that lack was compensated by the clean environment, not to mention the sense of security that one feels.

The famous Singapore river which offers a ferry ride cruise for 22 singapore dollar per person

Singapore riverside is teeming with eateries and bistros, making it a favorite haunt of tourists at night and of joggers in the morning. However, the cost of fresh seafood is fit for tourists only.

Singapore food may be alien to Filipinos. It is a mixture of Malaysian influence with a sprinkling of Indian spices. In the workshop, however, food was generally South Asian like the spring roll and Ubi dessert.

Morning and afternoon snacks were served in the WIPO office while lunch was held in Chilli Padi, a cafeteria inside the compound. With the 4 viands, desserts and bottomless juice, lunch was always satiating.

Partaking of the food at Chilli Padi: Djanuar Ishak of Indonesia with Aphivath Sombounkhanh of Lao PDR and Cambodian Sarady Sin. Far right is Bhutan’s Sherub Gyelsthen.

After the sessions, the participants treated themselves to a night of shopping. Some went to Sim Lim for their electronics needs and the others went to Mustafa Road for the huge mall that’s open 24/7.

Some participants, like John Lesaca with his shoulder injury, preferred to take a rest in the comfort of the hotel. Dinner in Park Hotel costs less than 20 Singapore dollars. Breakfast, however, is free.

To afford everyone of the photographs taken during the workshop, Boukary Sawadogo created a folder in the server so the participants can copy the photos. Aside from the photographs for souvenirs, Nepali Bharat Shakya distributed small masks as token.

Given to me by Bharat Shakya, Ganesha is the Nepali God with an elephant head. This deity is popularly called Remover of Obstacles.

Most of the participants were asking for a part 2 of the workshop perhaps due to the hospitality of Singapore or perhaps the learning was not really enough to equip the participants with the knowledge in running the WIPOCOS software.

Hopefully, Simon Ouedraogo’s dream of connecting all the databases with the use of cloud computing will come true soon.

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