New rules about what you can put on your ipod introduced by Conservatives

Monday, June 16, 2008

The Conservatives are bringing forward a new bill that is aimed at updating Canadian copyright law The massive changes in technology over the past decade plus would suggest that copyright law would need revision since the rise and fall of Napster and the emergence of more and more peer-to-peer downloading methods. Since the last time Canada updated its copyright law, in 1997, Canada has become number one in per capita downloading.

The news has raised eyebrows across the nation from all corners. From Ottawa, Law Professor Michael Geist has set the waves moving against the new bill. In his first thoughts after reading the text of the bill, he laid out five main points against the new bill.

1. He notes that the new bill provides some leeway for consumers in making copies of media. However, the new bill provides for digital lock protections on media. That means that even though the new bill allows for consumers to make single copies of media files, if a company puts a a digital lock on to a media file, it would still be illegal to make that copy.

2. The provisions regarding circumvention of digital locks on media files are worse than in laws enacted in the US.

3. The bill limits private infringement penalties to $500. However, if one were to post copyrighted material on say, Youtube, that could constitute a higher infringement penalty of $20,000.

4. Protections to Internet Service Providers ISPs in the bill could be erased by the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement that is progressing parallel to bill C-61.

5. The education community recieved no help in the new bill and in fact complicates things for libraries and institutions wishing to provide online copyrighted material.

A few other groups have stepped forward to rally against this bill. The Canadian Music Creators Coalition (CMCC) is not quite rallying against the bill but has released a statement on their website that states their distaste with the proposed bill. In their release, several Coalition members note that the new provisions in the bill are very similar to laws enacted in the United States and does not help Canadian musicians.

The release quotes Safwan Javed, CMCC member and drummer for Wide Mouth Mason. “Rather than building a made-in-Canada proposal to help musicians get paid, the government has chosen to import American-style legislation that says the solution to the music industry’s problems is suing our fans,” continued Javed. “Suing fans won’t make it 1992 again. It’s a new world for the music business and this is an old approach.”

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  1. Posted by: doug on Jun 16, 2008 @ 5:37pm

    Thanks for posting this up.

    This law is bad copy of an already horrible american law. The government is trying to throw a quick fix by putting out a law written by people uneducated in the field (technology, there are a lot of very technical subjects covered in the law) to make american corperations happy.

    It's time that we start calling groups like the RIAA out on their bullshit. They are NOT trying to help the artists but want to put more money in their back pockets. They failed to see the change in the industry and now they are struggling, so they are going after the people who made their business what it is.

    Complete **it if you ask me.

  2. Posted by: John Sak on Jun 26, 2008 @ 12:39am

    As Doug said, thanks for putting this up on thecannon. The only thing I thing missing from this is a "look up the 'Fair Copyright for Canada' group on facebook to learn more" blurb. So, seriously, go look it up and get involved.

  3. Posted by: Ashley on Jul 2, 2008 @ 11:49pm

    I agree with doug: the RIAA is only out for themselves and use the premise of fairness for their greed. Music producers and large artists are not hurt by PVP sharing, only the “little guys” are; I think it is pretty sick and sad that the entertainment industry (including movies, games etc.) cuts jobs, wages and benefits of their camera techs, costume creators, janitors and the like because they are “losing money” but they make sure that the Justin Timberlake’s and Fergie’s of the world still get their multiple millions.

    I think this is trend in sharing can only hurt smaller artists, but in general if they are so small as to not have a label then its usually not available to download. As for artists with a label, talk to your label about your money, not the public. On the advent of Napster and it’s PVP progeny CD costs jumped instead of went down! I used to use Napster to download songs from an artist and if I liked the artist I’d buy their CD for $10-13. Now, some of more unique stuff I like is upwards of $25 and I find more and more artists are producing garbage: a couple cover songs and filler. I won’t pay that kind of money for two songs.


  4. Posted by: Ashley on Jul 2, 2008 @ 11:50pm

    (Continued from above)

    As for the Canadian government, I do believe laws need to be improved to protect intellectual and software property, but as usual our politicians are nothing but politicians and have no idea about the creation and/or malleability of technology. All they can do is puff out their chests and pretend they have the biggest c*ck, because they are trying to retain some dignity as they bend over and take it from our American neighbors. This bill fails to look out what is moral, good for the economy, Canadian culture or the future and is just a desperate attempt to stay in the good graces of the US. The entire law structure surrounding biotechnology, software, entertainment and intellectual property is non-existent or out-dated; Why can’t our government convene some of the brightest minds in these areas and finally give a desperate update? Oh, it’s because they are too busy screaming back and forth in the House of Commons calling each other names like 5 year olds and yelling over which party takes care of Canadian citizens better instead spending time actually doing it.

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