Archive for July 27th, 2010

CETA Update: EU Continues To Press on IP

The Department of Foreign Affairs held a call today with various groups to provide an update on the Canada – European Union Comprehensive Trade Agreement negotiations.  The department indicated that there has been progress on virtually all issues and the broad shape of the deal is being outlined. On intellectual […]

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July 27, 2010 4 comments News

The U.S. DMCA vs. Bill C-32: Comparing the Digital Lock Exceptions

Yesterday’s U.S. DMCA Rulemaking decision, which established a series of new anti-circumvention exceptions, attracted considerable attention on both sides of the border.  In the U.S., critics of the DMCA noted the progress in addressing some of the DMCA’s most troubling consequences by creating exceptions for unlocking and jailbreaking cellphones and circumventing DVD locks in several circumstances (though the decision is hardly a panacea given the restrictions on distributing circumvention tools, contractual restrictions, and the absence of a general right to circumvent for lawful purposes).

From a Canadian perspective, the U.S. decision – combined with the recent 5th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling linking circumvention to copyright and the USTR decision to cave on the digital lock rules in ACTA – provides a timely reminder of the mistake that is the digital lock rules in C-32. 

Looking back, Industry Minister Tony Clement said he wanted forward-looking legislation designed to last ten years, yet the scope of Bill C-32’s anti-circumvention exceptions became outdated in less than ten weeks.  Canadian Heritage Minister James Moore, when not calling critics “radical extremists,” emphasized that Bill C-32 was not identical to the DMCA.  While he had the notice-and-notice system in mind, weeks later his comments became accurate since it turns out the DMCA is far less restrictive than C-32.

Just how badly does the Canadian bill stack up?  On the two key issues in the bill – digital locks and fair dealing – Canada is far more restrictive than the U.S.  Consider:

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July 27, 2010 17 comments News

Next ACTA Meeting “Intercessional Meeting” Not Formal Round

David Hammerstein reports that the next series of ACTA talks will be an “intercessional meeting” in Washington starting on August 16, 2010.  The talks will not be treated as a formal round, which has the effect of decreasing transparency since no agenda or statement will be released.

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July 27, 2010 Comments are Disabled Must Reads