A British Columbia court has ordered purchasers of the new Harry Potter book to return it immediately and forbid anyone from discussing any elements contained in the book itself. The latest instalment of Harry Potter apparently goes on sale on Saturday but at least one BC bookseller began selling it in advance. The publisher wasn't particularly pleased and obtained a court order stopping the bookseller (or any bookseller) from selling the book until the official release date.
While that is understandable, the remainder of the court order is a bit harder to take. People have legitimately purchased the book, yet now face violation of a court order if they fail to return it immediately, discuss it, or do anything else with the book. While a court might look skeptically on an attempt to bring an action against a purchaser who fails to return the book, why the court would grant such a broad order that reaches down to the underlying purchasers suggests that this could turn into a real horror story.
Update: I've posted a further update on this story that seeks to address the misconception that the case involves stolen versions of the book.
Update II: I've posted a second additional comment to supplement what I have come to realize was an understated reaction to this case. The scope of the injunction is remarkably broad and represents a direct attack on Canadian freedoms.