The Liberal introduction of Bill C-416 has sparked the folks at Cynically Tested to remind everyone about the great parody they produced on the subject.
Archive for March, 2007
The Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security held a hearing this morning on counterfeit goods. The panel was well stacked, featuring the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, the Canadian Anti-Counterfeiting Network, and the CRIA. Given that composition, the resulting comments will come as little surprise – a Chamber of Commerce representative professed embarrassment over Canada's IP laws, the CACN representatives passed around an extension cord without sufficent grounding while asserting that "fatalities are inevitable" and that IP enforcement is a "lost cause" in Canada. A CACN lawyer noted the great success of educating six and seven year-olds about counterfeit toys that do not contain a tag indicating that they are made of new materials. Graham Henderson indicated that it was about "jobs, jobs, jobs" and that Kenya provides a model for addressing IP issues (though he neglected to mention that like Canada, Kenya has signed, but not ratified, the WIPO Internet treaties).
The panelists all claimed that Canada's IP enforcement system is outdated and thus requires significant new resources and legislative change. There was also considerable emphasis on creating a Canadian IP enforcement infrastructure, with Henderson calling for the creation of an IP Crime Task Force and IP Co-ordination Councils at the federal and provincial levels.
The committee was incredibly receptive to this message.
The Supreme Court of Canada this morning granted leave in the Blood Tribe case, which involves questions about the Privacy Commissioner of Canada's ability to compel the production of documents over which a claim of solicitor-client privilege is asserted in the context of an investigation under PIPEDA.
Earlier this week the National Post ran a story titled Video Theft May Rise in Canada. The story is interesting as it demonstrates that the headlines on peer-to-peer may not be changing, but the underlying story certainly is. The article is not what you might think – rather than yet another story alleging Canadian movie piracy or weak copyright laws, it is actually focused on how Canadians may not immediately benefit from the push to online video in the U.S. since many U.S. broadcasters will block out Canadian users.
What does that have to do with "video theft"? Other than the unnecessary use of a sensational headline based on the mistaken premise that this is a piracy issue, there is a brief reference in the article that notes that more Canadians will download television shows through peer-to-peer networks if they are blocked out of U.S. streams. Of course, the same shows are freely available on television, so this form of "piracy" is merely device shifting freely available content from one screen to another.
Leaving aside questions about whether this is actually a concern, I think it is noteworthy that the article flips around the conventional approach to business and peer-to-peer.