Canadian Copyright Bill C-32 submission

Friday, 28 January, 2011

Feel great! Finally got around to send in my Bill C-32 submission to the parliamentary committee (Committee’s mailbox at three days before the 31 Jan, 2011 deadline!

Check out Prof. Michael Geist’s “Canadians Speaking Out on Bill C-32” for his views and other experts’ takes. And I found Project Gutenberg Canada’s submission very insightful.


“In order for briefs on Bill C-32 to be considered by the Committee in a timely fashion, the document should be submitted to the Committee’s mailbox at by the end of January, 2011. A brief which is longer than 5 pages should be accompanied by a 1 page executive summary and in any event should not exceed 10 pages in length.

Flawed Digital Copyright Modernization Act “Fixable”?

Thursday, 3 June, 2010

I’ve finished reading Michael Geist’s “The Canadian Copyright Bill: Flawed But Fixable” and started to read the Bill C-32 (PDF file). Here is an excerpt from Michael’s article,

“The foundational principle of the new bill remains that anytime a digital lock is used – whether on books, movies, music, or electronic devices – the lock trumps virtually all other rights.  In other words, in the battle between two sets of property rights – those of the intellectual property rights holder and those of the consumer who has purchased the tangible or intangible property – the IP rights holder always wins.  This represents market intervention for a particular business model by a government supposedly committed to the free market and it means that the existing fair dealing rights (including research, private study, news reporting, criticism, and review) and the proposed new rights (parody, satire, education, time shifting, format shifting, backup copies) all cease to function effectively so long as the rights holder places a digital lock on their content or device.  Moreover, the digital lock approach is not limited to fair dealing – library provisions again include a requirement for digital copies to self-destruct within five days and distance learning teaching provisions require the destruction of materials 30 days after the course concludes.”

My initial reaction was, “What the heck? Did the Government of Canada (the ministers) listen to Canadians in the Canada-wide online and offline consultations _at all_ ?

May be I shouldn’t have been surprised by the industrial biased when ministers Tony Clement and James Moore unveiled the bill at Electronic Arts instead of a more neutral location that might signified a more balanced approach to the two sets of property rights (rights holders’ vs consumers’).

Michael is more optimistic and generous and called the bill “Flawed But Fixable. I am more pessimistic and, I think, more realistic in not having high hopes. I will try to read and understand different parts of C-32 and feedback from different people.

Copyright Modernization Act (Bill C-32) introduced

Wednesday, 2 June, 2010

Update: – Have a look of Bill C-32 (PDF file). [HT Corey]

– Read Michael’s “The Canadian Copyright Bill: Flawed But Fixable” to find out his first impression from attending the media lockup. Here is an excerpt,

“The digital lock provisions are by far the biggest flaw in the bill, rules that some will argue renders it beyond repair.  I disagree. The flaw must be fixed, but there is much to support within the proposal. There will undoubtedly be attacks on the fair dealing reforms and pressure to repeal them, along with the U.S. and the copyright lobby demanding that their digital lock provisions be left untouched.  If Canadians stay quiet, both are distinct possibilities.  If they speak out, perhaps the bill can be fixed.  I’ll post an update of my 30 things you can do shortly.”

Copyright bill would outlaw breaking digital locks [CBC] The following is an excerpt from CBC.

  • “The express legalization of format shifting, or the copying of content from one device to another, such as a CD to a computer or an iPod.
  • The express legalization of time shifting, or recording television programs for later viewing but not for the purposes of building up a library.
  • A “YouTube” clause that allows people to mash up media under certain circumstances, as long as it’s not for commercial gain.
  • A “notice-and-notice” system where copyright holders will inform internet providers of possible piracy from their customers. The ISP would then be required to notify the customer that he or she was violating the law.
  • A differentiation of commercial copyright violation versus individual violation. Individuals found violating copyright law could be liable for penalties between $100 and $5,000, which is below the current $20,000 maximum.
  • New exceptions to fair dealing that will allow copyright violations for the purposes of parody, satire and education.”

Will read the bill in full to find out more when it is posted online.


With this Notice Paper, looks like the bill is coming soon. Will have to take a closer look of the bill when it is tabled. [HT Michael Geist]

Check out  “An Unofficial User Guide to the Coming Copyright Bill

CBC and iCopyright – a marriage doomed to fail

Wednesday, 3 February, 2010

It is amazing to read “Canadian Broadcasting Corporation signs up with weird American copyright bounty-hunters” and found that CBC and iCopyright have been so out-of-step of their understanding of what is legal in Canada with respect to copyright. Read more from Jesse Brown’s iCopyright post and open letter to CBC.

I hate to point out to supposed “lawyers” at CBC and iCopyright what law or court cases they need to read (assuming they know how to read), they can certainly start with 2004 Supreme Court of Canada ruling, “CCH Canadian Ltd. v. Law Society of Upper Canada“. I thought any self-respecting copyright lawyers would have taken the time to read the case in the last 6 years. Ah, I guess I may have assumed wrong.

[HT Eaves]


Tuesday, 1 December, 2009

Questions about ACTA in House of Commons today.

So far the opaque ACTA negotiation makes me nervous. I hope Ministers Tony Clement and James Moore knows they can’t consult us and then ignore our opinions. That will be very bad.

[via Michael Geist]

22 Minutes On Canadian Copyright Reform

Wednesday, 21 October, 2009

Funny parody of Canadian copyright reform arguments on CBC This Hour has 22 minutes.

[via Michael Geist]

Copyright e-Consultation (July 20 to Sept 13, 2009)

Wednesday, 5 August, 2009

Canada is having a fresh round of copyright consultations, face-to-face, and more importantly online e-consultation from July 20 to Sept 13, 2009. And all Canadians are welcomed to share their views and send thier inputs.

Since copyright affect all Canadians, did you know the old Bill C-61, if it had passed, would have made all Canadians who own a affordable/”cheap” Chinese-made DVD player a “copyright-criminal”? Since the Chinese-made DVD players can play DVDs from all regions, it “breaks” the DVDs’ digital locks and thus broke the law and making us all “copyright-criminals”!

Now, I am reposting the following message to members of the Facebook group “Fair Copyright for Canada – Calgary Chapter” and hope Canadians will take a few minutes to read and understand the issues and submit their concerns and views.


Dear Fair Copyright Calgary Chapter members,

This group has been quiet for the last few months but I’ve some good news to share.

Our long & hard fought copyright battles (protests and meeting with various MPs) since Dec 2007 have resulted in Canadians winning the rights to have the federal gov consult with us first before they try to update the existing copyright legislation.

With the clear and unacceptable defects in Bill C-61 are still fresh in our memories, it is extremely important for each of us to take a few moments to email our submissions. Yes, it is as easy as an email !

*** Online Consultation ***

The public and online consultation period is from July 20 to Sept 13, 2009.

The Copyright e-consultation site has instructions to submit your views and many useful resources (events archives, discussions, comments, and public submissions).

Prof. Michael Geist has created a specific site to share his insights specific to this consultation.

And Michael’s “short answer” on copyright.

*** Calgary Round Table on Copyright***

On July 21, 2009, Rob Tiessen (chair of the Canadian Library Association‘s Copyright Working Group) attended the Calgary Round Table and Rob has kindly shared with his meeting notes. Pls follow this link to read his notes.

*** Sharing our views about copyright ***

Yes, we won the rights to be heard. Now, lets speak out by sending in our email submissions.

So lets keep it up by redouble our effort to share our views and remind the government of the problems in the ill-conceived Bill C-61. Especially we now have two new ministers that are working on the copyright file, Minister Tony Clement (Industry) and Minster James Moore (Heritage), who seem to be willing to listen to Canadians.

Lets exercise our rights and “Speak Out On Copyright” by check out the above links, and send in your submission via email.

Kempton Lam
Fair Copyright for Canada (Calgary Chapter)

Copyright Round Table in Calgary

Wednesday, 5 August, 2009

Rob Tiessen (chair of the Canadian Library Association‘s Copyright Working Group) has kindly provided us with his meeting notes at the Calgary Round Table on Copyright on July 21, 2009. The following are his notes.

Thanks Rob.


As chair of the Canadian Library Association‘s Copyright Working Group, I was asked to represent CLA at the Calgary Round Table on Copyright on July 21, 2009.  The Federal Government is consulting Canadians on modernizing copyright in Canada.  Part of the process includes Copyright Round Tables in Vancouver, Calgary, Winnipeg, Gatineau and possibly more locations.

The following organizations gave presentations at the Calgary Round Table:

  • The Canadian Association of Broadcasters – Gary Maavara
  • The Canadian Chamber of Commerce – Lee Webster
  • The Canadian Library Association – Rob Tiessen
  • The Canadian Publishers Council – Catherine Campbell
  • Digital Alberta – Rene Smid
  • The Retail Council of Canada – Peter Pilarski
  • Shaw Communcations – Cynthia Rathwell
  • The University of Calgary Student’s Union – Kay She

The following Government representatives attended the Calgary Round Table:

  • The Honourable Tony Clement.  Minister of Industry.
  • Ms. Colette Downey.  Director General – Marketplace Framework Policy Branch – Industry Canada.
  • Ms. Barbara Motzney.  Director General – Copyright Policy Branch – Canadian Heritage.
  • Ms. Zoe Addington.  Policy Advisor to Minister Clement –

All the Government representatives were very engaged in the process.  Minister Clement asked many follow up questions to the participants.

The Canadian Library Association presented on the following points.

Fair Dealing:

  • We would like to see the most important elements of the CCH Supreme Court Judgment incorporated in the Copyright Act.
  • Canadians who act with a good faith belief that their actions with respect to a work are within fair dealing or are protected by some other user right should not be subject to statutory damages, similar to the provisions in section 504 of US copyright law.

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