Mexico: Redes Sociales, ¿Tierra De Nadie O Campo Minado?

En fechas recientes las redes sociales se han visto invadidas por la tendencia al 'selfie.' No es casualidad que el Diccionario Oxford en inglés la haya nombrado la palabra del año 2013. A su vez, se puede ver la amplia cobertura en medios nacionales al conflicto sobre el nombre 'Werevertumorro', situación que también ilustra cómo, para bien o para mal, lo que sucede alrededor de las redes sociales y, en general, en el ámbito de las nuevas tecnologías va teniendo cada vez mayor presencia en la vida de las personas.

"No cabe duda que las nuevas tecnologías presentan nuevos retos para la regulación de la propiedad intelectual. Existe una urgente necesidad de encontrar un adecuado equilibrio entre la protección a los titulares de derechos intelectuales y el derecho a la libertad de información y expresión en internet de los usuarios", expresa el abogado Felipe Gutiérrez Serrano, de Panamericana de Patentes y Marcas.

Comenta que a nivel mundial aún existe incertidumbre en cuanto al modelo ideal para regular los contenidos en internet de manera efectiva. Hay jurisdicciones que han buscado responsabilizar a los proveedores de servicios de acceso a internet, en caso de que no proporcionen información a la autoridad, no suspendan cuentas o no retiren contenidos que infrinjan derechos de terceros. En México, ya son varias las iniciativas de Ley que se han presentado con esa tendencia.

Disposiciones actuales aplicables en la materia 

La propiedad intelectual en sentido amplio comprende tanto a los derechos de autor como a la propiedad industrial; en esta última se encuentran las patentes, marcas, secretos industriales y otras figuras relacionadas, estando regulados por la Ley Federal del Derecho de Autor (LFDA) y Ley de la Propiedad Industrial (LPI), respectivamente, detalla Felipe Gutiérrez.

En cuanto al derecho de autor se puede decir que es el reconocimiento que se hace en favor de todo creador de obras literarias y/o artísticas, por el que se otorga protección para que el autor goce de derechos exclusivos. Conforme al derecho patrimonial de autor, su titular podrá explotar de manera exclusiva sus obras, o bien, autorizar o prohibir a otros su explotación. Los derechos patrimoniales estarán vigentes durante la vida del autor y, a partir de su muerte, cien años más.

Aunado a lo anterior, el abogado explica que la protección en materia de derechos de autor se concede a las obras desde el momento en que han sido fijadas en un soporte material, sin requerir registro o quedar subordinado al cumplimiento de alguna formalidad. No obstante ello, el registro de obras puede resultar conveniente para dar una adecuada publicidad a las obras y dar una presunción legal de titularidad a favor de quien las registra, admitiendo prueba en contrario.

Con base en lo anterior, indica que es importante que al hacer uso de las redes sociales se respeten aquellos contenidos (fotografías, imágenes, música, videos, etc.) propiedad de terceros, teniendo presente que para su utilización es necesario contar con la autorización correspondiente e incluso contando con ésta, es necesario atribuir y citar debidamente al autor de los contenidos.

"Respecto a los contenidos propios que el usuario sube a las redes sociales, surge naturalmente el siguiente cuestionamiento: ¿de quién es la información que se sube a redes sociales? Para responder a esto, se deben de conocer los términos de servicio de la red social que corresponda. En las principales redes sociales los contenidos propios que se suben se mantienen en propiedad del usuario. No obstante, generalmente se concede a la red social una amplísima licencia gratuita, mundial, no exclusiva, transferible, con derechos de sublicencia, sobre el uso, copia, reproducción, procesamiento, adaptación, modificación, publicación, transmisión, exposición y distribución de tal contenido a través de cualquier medio o método de distribución presente o futuro. En otras palabras, la red social puede hacer lo que quiera con los contenidos que el usuario ingresa", especifica el abogado.

Uso de marcas en redes sociales

Felipe Gutiérrez puntualiza que en el ámbito de la propiedad industrial, específicamente por lo que refiere al uso de marcas en redes sociales, también es importante tomar ciertas precauciones. "Entendemos por marca a todo signo visible que distinga productos o servicios de otros de su misma especie o clase en el mercado. A diferencia de los derechos de autor, el registro de una marca en México es esencial para contar con la exclusividad y lograr una adecuada protección. El registro de marca tendrá una vigencia de 10 años pudiendo renovarse por periodos de la misma duración".

"Con lo anterior en mente, los usuarios de redes sociales no deben utilizar marcas iguales o parecidas en grado de confusión a otras registradas, para identificar los mismos o similares productos o servicios. De igual manera se recomienda vigilar el uso no autorizado de marcas por parte de terceros y, en su caso, registrar como nombres de dominio y nombres usuario en redes sociales las principales marcas cuya titularidad corresponda al usuario", sugiere el abogado de Panamericana de Patentes y Marcas.

Añade que el usuario en redes sociales debe evitar incurrir en prácticas abusivas o de competencia desleal, ya sea por publicidad comparativa inadecuada o por actos que puedan inducir al público a confusión, error o engaño, por hacer suponer la existencia de una relación entre un titular de derechos y un tercero, ya sea por la fabricación productos o la prestación de servicios, bajo especificaciones, licencias o autorizaciones.

"De igual manera, el usuario debe de tener cuidado con la información que revela en redes sociales y no difundir información que pueda constituir un secreto industrial propio o de terceros", destaca Gutiérrez.

Novedad y patentes

Bajo el principio de no divulgación, pero en materia de patentes, el abogado resalta el tema de la novedad, que es un requisito para que una invención pueda ser patentable: "Como regla general, para que una invención sea novedosa, ésta no debe darse a conocer por ningún medio, previo a la presentación de la solicitud de patente. Como excepción a lo anterior, nuestra Ley de la Propiedad Industrial permite que exista una divulgación previa, sin afectar que siga considerándose nueva la invención, cuando dentro de los doce meses previos a la fecha de presentación de la solicitud, el titular haya dado a conocer la invención por cualquier medio de comunicación. De tal manera que si un usuario da a conocer su invención a través de redes sociales, antes de presentar la solicitud de patente, es importante que revise la forma en la que hace pública la información para conservar los requisitos de patentabilidad".

*Este artículo fue publicado en la Revista comercial de NEGOCIOS de GRUPO REFORMA en su edición de Abril de 2014.

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