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Government Imposes Time Allocation on Bill C-11

Government House Leader Peter Van Loan announced yesterday that the government is imposing time allocation on the second reading debate on Bill C-11. That means debate on the bill should conclude on Friday and the bill will be sent to committee for further hearings and review. While the government's overuse of time allocation is a concern, sending C-11 to committee places the core issues on the table - will it amend the digital lock rules as so many are asking and/or will it cave to copyright lobby pressure and add SOPA-style amendments to the bill? Now is the time to speak out.
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"Bill C-11 Is No SOPA": My Response

Barry Sookman, lawyer and registered lobbyist for the Canadian Recording Industry Association (now Music Canada), the Motion Pictures Association - Canada, and Canadian Publishers Council, has an op-ed in the National Post claiming that concerns that proposed amendments to Bill C-11 could result in SOPA-style rules in Canada are the stuff of wild claims and hysteria.

The short response is that Sookman's column - along with his clients - downplay the dramatic impact of their proposed amendments. Their proposed amendments to C-11 would radically alter the bill by constraining consumer provisions, heaping greater liability risk on Internet companies, and introducing website blocking and Internet termination to Canada. Several of these provisions are very similar in approach to SOPA in the U.S. and the comparison is both apt and accurate. Moreover, the column leaves the false impression that Bill C-11's digital lock rules are standard when they are widely opposed by numerous stakeholders that Sookman would not dare to call anti-copyright.

There is much more to take issue with in the column and I've done so in paragraph-by-paragraph format below. Sookman's column is posted in italics and my response immediately follows:


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