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Putting Copyright Statutory Damages In Perspective

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Friday December 03, 2010
One of the more interesting exchanges during Wednesday's C-32 Legislative Committee hearing involved questions on the bill's reforms to statutory damages. The bill proposes to establish a maximum statutory damages penalty of $5,000 for infringement that the court considers to be non-commercial.  That contrasts with commercial infringement, which carries a $20,000 per infringement maximum.  Note that the minimums are roughly the same - non-commercial infringement has a $100 minimum, while commercial infringement's minimum is $200.

Liberal MP Dan McTeague questioned the change, suggesting that it could send the wrong message about infringement and be viewed as a licence to steal.  I disagreed with his position, pointing out that $5,000 was still enormous cost for most Canadians and that it is potential multi-million dollar liability for non-commercial file sharing that sends a bad message about Canadian justice. 

I also made the point that statutory damages are relatively rare on the international scene, a point that I think is worth expanding upon.  Perhaps because both Canada and the U.S. have statutory damages, many MPs might be under the mistaken impression that most countries have them. In fact, the opposite is the case. 

According to an unpublished study by Tara Wheatland of the Berkeley Center for Law & Technology, the overwhelming majority of countries do not have any statutory damages.  Wheatland could only find 19 countries with them, a small percentage of overall WIPO membership.  The paper notes that of the 37 developed economy countries at WIPO, 32 do not have statutory damages.  These include Australia, Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.  The five countries that do have them are Canada, Greece, Israel, Singapore, and the U.S.  There are an additional 14 countries with statutory damages, primarily from the post-Soviet republics: Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Belarus, Bulgaria, China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Liberia, Lithuania, Moldova, Morocco, Russia, Ukraine, and Vietnam.

Even among those countries with statutory damages, many have taken steps to limit potential awards.  Bulgaria, China, and Vietnam all provide that statutory damages are only appropriate where it would be difficult to prove actual damages.  Several countries, including Israel, have no minimum statutory damage, allowing a court to decline to award them where appropriate.

The lack of support for statutory damages was in evidence earlier this year as part of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement negotiations.  While the U.S. sought to establish mandatory statutory damages within the agreement, most ACTA countries rejected the approach, reflecting the fact that the overwhelming majority do not have domestic statutory damages requirements. 

The reality is that Canada is out-of-touch with most of its trading partners on this issue, who do not believe that statutory damages are an appropriate remedy nor necessary deterrent. Moreover, the statutory damages provision was never intended to apply to non-commercial cases (few would have envisioned tens of thousands of lawsuits against individuals). The changes in Bill C-32 do not eliminate statutory damages, but rightly recognize that multi-million dollar liability threats are neither appropriate nor necessary for non-commercial infringement cases.
Comments (68)add comment

Jason K said:

@MG
Are you personally for or against any stat damages with respect to non-commercial infringement in C32? Can you please clearify.
December 03, 2010

Napalm said:

New business models
One for Barry:

http://yro.slashdot.org/story/...rket-Music

Great idea: how about "the industry" uploading themselves to "pirate" sites then suing the downloaders....

Sound legit to me and you could make $5000 per song instead of a mere $0.99 on iTunes.

Nap.
December 03, 2010

Mark said:

...
What I find interesting is that the digital locks protection is being put forth to try to protect certain business models.

What does protecting business models have to do with copyright?

Anyways... on another issue... I've listened to Wednesday's meeting, as well as a couple of others recently including Mr. Moore's comments, and what I believe that proponents of bill C-32 are failing to realize is that by introducing it, they will be *radically* changing the landscape of copyright in Canada, creating dramatic additional incentive for companies that may not have used digital locks previously to now start doing so, so that they might be able to claim new found protection on their business model.

This will tend to make unprotected works harder to find for consumers in the future, making the so called "free choice" that consumers have to not buy works with digital locks on them largely illusionary, and causing consumers who would be able to enjoy private copying privileges on works that are not protected by a digital lock to seek methods that will enable them to do so on works that have digital locks. Considering it it is not up to the consumer whether or not the digital lock is there in the first place, it is unlikely to be perceived by most that it should make any difference as to the correctness of copying it for their own private use, even if doing so means breaking a digital lock. And if they *are* aware of C-32, they are likely to conclude that the new law is simply wrong, and will not heed it, even if they should risk prosecution by doing so, since historically people have never continued to obey laws that they felt were wrong (if they did, the USA would still be part of the British empire, and buses would still have sections reserved for certain races).

Also, what I get a laugh about is that the levy was introduced in response to the rampant levels of downloading of infringing content, but the levy is supposed to exist for private copying only. If the content is infringing, it hasn't been privately copied because private copies were supposed to be exempt from infringement. At worst, the levy appears to wholly legalize unauthorized file sharing, which cannot possibly be the intent of copyright.

Rather, I firmly believe that the private copying exemption from copyright infringement should *only* apply when the material they are copying from is not infringing in the first place, and any informed individual is more than capable of determining whether or not that is liable to be the case. If one chooses to remain uninformed and ignore the potential legal consequences of their actions, they deserve what they get, IMO.
December 03, 2010

Napalm said:

...
@Mark: "What I find interesting is that the digital locks protection is being put forth to try to protect certain business models. "

What's even worse is that those business models are unspecified.

Speculation is not allowed in court, why is it allowed in a legislative committee?

If they have a certain model in mind that they think it needs additional legislation, then they have to come up and clearly explain what that model is. So we can analyze if that business is beneficial or detrimental for the society.

Is the committee willing to engage into blindfold-idly enabling some new kind of criminal activity?

Nap.
December 03, 2010

IamME said:

...
Nap said:
"Great idea: how about "the industry" uploading themselves to "pirate" sites then suing the downloaders...."

Wouldn't this be entrapment or does entrapment only apply when law enforcement does the inducing? In any case it's underhanded in the same vein as copyright trolls.
December 03, 2010

Crockett said:

A reasonable compromise ...
I have suggested that TPM be only applied to rental/subscription media, such as streaming services. Otherwise purchased media should be DRM free. This way new innovative services such as Pandora, LastFM etc. can operate in Canada (They probably would anyways if they hadn't been chased away by high Canadian licensing fees). Consumers would be able to legally exercise fair use such as time/format shifting and backups. I personally would even be OK with adding a 5 or 10% charge on the purchase price if I was guaranteed the fair use rights up front and that extra charge went directly back to the creator.

There really are workable solutions to this issue if everyone stopped being so greedy and self centered.
December 03, 2010

Eric L. said:

RE: Crockett
"I have suggested that TPM be only applied to rental/subscription media, such as streaming services."

I don't think there would be a need for TPM in any case. TPMs are just aren't reliable, and misuse of TPMs outweight in my opinion any sort of benefit (like in the case of "trusted computing"). TPMs in general reduce the quality of the service they are paired with. It is an anti-feature.
December 03, 2010

Crockett said:

As for Statuary damages ...
The problem with statuary damages are they are;

a) They are have not proven to be effective;
b) They are being used by unscrupulous parties as means of extortion.

Even the Conservatives limit of $5000, while in my view is damaging enough to a families well being, is still high enough for copyright trolls to begin a racketeering campaign. See the links below for what is happening in the USA and the UK, then decide.

http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2010/11/p2p-settlement-lawyers-lied-committed-fraud-says-new-lawsuit.ars
http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2010/12/hire-me-or-eat-sht-accusations-fly-over-diy-p2p-defense-kits.ars
December 03, 2010

Mark said:

...
@Crockett

A much more sensible approach is to allow the distributor to put TPM's on their works if they want to, but still allow a person to legally bypass or circumvent such measures if, and only if, the underlying purpose was something that does not to otherwise infringe on copyright.
December 03, 2010

K-Bert said:

...
It's obvious that free internet( while you're still
paying $50 or more dollars per month for it) and
net neutrality are going to be on the verge of death
with this bill.

Barry Sookman and his "wealth destroyers"lol, they want
tougher penalties for people who download copyrighted
content. And the reason they won't go the "Ipod tax route
is because of US lobbyist pressure.

If it were just Canada and Canadians involved with this
new bill, I'll bet almost everyone would be satisfied with
more money allocated to the media levy. That's what the
songwriters association is asking for. Instead they're
looking to criminalize ordinary Canadians "who aren't
wealthy and can't afford their five grand cap, like some
who can afford to use that for coffee money a week.

I hope no one minded the digital age of 1996, because
that's exactly where I think we're headed. Who's going
to want HS internet, if they fear they'll be caught
and charged. HS net will become obsolete.
December 03, 2010

Napalm said:

...
@Eric L: "I don't think there would be a need for TPM in any case. TPMs are just aren't reliable, and misuse of TPMs outweight in my opinion any sort of benefit (like in the case of "trusted computing"). TPMs in general reduce the quality of the service they are paired with. It is an anti-feature. "

There is one legit use, but then it is most an anti-tampering system not an anti-copying one. It's about online multiplayer games where you want to make sure that all participants run exactly the same software i.e. you don't have a "hacker" that modified the video driver in order to "see through walls" and have "automatic aiming" and stuff like that. A couple of such bozos can ruin the online experience for everyone to the point of making the game unplayable. So the system just doesn't let them connect to the multiplayer server if it detects such modifications ("hacks").

Of course these anti-tampering systems will eventually be circumvented but if they last for 2-3 years which is the prime time of a game, then they have reached their purpose.

Nap.
December 03, 2010

Napalm said:

...
@Crockett: "I have suggested that TPM be only applied to rental/subscription media, such as streaming services."

Sounds reasonable.

Nap.
December 03, 2010

Napalm said:

...
@K-Bert: "Who's going to want HS internet, if they fear they'll be caught
and charged. HS net will become obsolete."

Not really. Personally I would keep my HS subscription even all Internet content would disappear except my VPN to my workplace. I definitely would want to keep the privilege of being able to "work from home" instead of driving through a snow storm, and risking my life or sitting stuck for 8 hours in my car.

Nap.
December 03, 2010

K-Bert said:

...
@Nap

I forgot about that.Rogers and Bell will still
have a small minority of people, having to work
through VPN. I really do think the ISP's on the
whole will lose quite a lot business though, in
regards to the so called "pirates" who paid to
download stuff off the internet.

Sales for blank media will also fall by a substantial
amount.
December 03, 2010

Napalm said:

...
@K-Bert: "Sales for blank media will also fall by a substantial
amount. "

They're already falling. The Quebec folks just complained that blank media sales went down 60%.

CDs (pre-recorded or blank) will continue to fall as more and more people buy "tunes" from iTunes or Amazon or whatever.

The amusing part is that they want an iPod levy to compensate for "format shifting" and "personal copying". Hello? These days people are buying directly in iPod format, they don't do any shifting or copying, so what exactly is the levy for?

Nap.
December 03, 2010

Crockett said:

Hip Hip Hooray, High speed is here to stay ;)
@NAP "Hello? These days people are buying directly in iPod format, they don't do any shifting or copying, so what exactly is the levy for? "

Yes, that is an excellent point. Apple already allows you to put your tunes on a media server and stream it to your Ipad or Apple TV or whatever.

@K-BERT " Who's going to want HS internet, if they fear they'll be caught and charged. HS net will become obsolete."

There are many other uses for high speed internet than 'piratical downloading'. Steaming service like Netflix (and hopefully the return of Pandora) for instance. And yes I realize the bandwidth caps are an issue but that will work itself out eventually I expect. Also, online gaming is becoming very popular, both MMOs and a new play all the top tier stand alone games via a streaming subscription model that was just announced. Plus all the other things that have not been thought up yet as net connections continue to only get faster. Expect blow back from the ISPs themselves as they have somewhat foolishly become ISP/Media conglomerates. Eventually even the FCC followed by the anemic CRTC will have to do something about that. There are too many of the 'public' (enough to outshout the lobbyists anyways) that will make a stink if big business stuffs the pipes with only their wares.
December 03, 2010

K-Bert said:

...
@Nap

I wonder what the numbers for blank media in
Ontario would be?

There is no levy on blank DVD-R's I believe.Maybe
that could be done to appease the MPAA? Draconian
laws may not eradicate piracy as much as the Cons
and their lobbyists think. It's all too evident that
that was what this bill is all about. The ISP's gave
people hi speed internet. Microsoft made computers with
lots or ram and memory for people to download large
media files, and also put in CD/DVD burners in them.
Did they think people were going to just burn their
family pics on the blank media Sony and Memorex sell?

If Rogers and Bell give people caps up to 120gigs
a month, how could people not possibly download or
"pirate" these digital files, to even come close to
reaching that number of gigabytes?

A lot of companies helped incourage piracy.And they
made a hell'uva lot of money doing it, which is
why they gave the people that freedom in the first
place. One hand gives, while the other tries to
take it away.

They gave the masses the ability to download large
files, and now they want to take it away.
December 03, 2010

Napalm said:

...
@K-bert:

I have an old plan of 60GB/month. If I were to subscribe today it would be 30GB/month. Perfect for 60% of a Blu-Ray disc.

Or do they think that I would spend my time downloading the same old Britney Spears mp3s? Or some Seinfeld movie in glorious 320x200 resolution? Duh.

So don't listen to them when complaining about internet piracy. They just want to enable a new business model - racketeering. Sue everybody then offer them the chance to "settle" for $3000 or be dragged in courts for the next 2-3 years.

Nap.
December 03, 2010

Off Topic said:

Wikileaks cables reveal that the US wrote Spain's proposed copyright law
115 of the Wikileaks cables intercepted from the US embassy in Madrid were tagged with "KIPR" -- that is, relating to "intellectual property," The big question has been: will El Pais, the Spanish newspaper that has the complete trove of Wikileaks cables release them in time to effect the vote on the new law?

Well, now they've started. The first 35 of the 115 cables have been released, and they confirm the widespread suspicion: the Spanish government and the opposition party were led around by the nose by the US representatives who are the real legislative authority in Spain.

So here's the new question: when the Spanish Congress votes on America's copyright law this month, will they vote for their sovereignty, or act like a US puppet state?

Cory Doctorow. Boing Boing

http://www.boingboing.net/2010/12/03/wikileaks-cables-rev.html
December 03, 2010

Napalm said:

...
@K-bert:

So you could download 3 Blu-Rays for $99.... doesn't look like a good deal to me.

As for my "Sue everybody then offer them the chance to "settle" for $3000 or be dragged in courts for the next 2-3 years. " comment.

$20 says that they will fight for raising the damages limit from $5000 to $10000. So that $3000 would look like a good deal compared to 3 years of litigation and paying $10000 in the end.

Nap.
December 03, 2010

K-Bert said:

...
As for my "Sue everybody then offer them the chance to "settle" for $3000 or be dragged in courts for the next 2-3 years. " comment. "

That would be a monumental waste of time and money.

December 03, 2010

Warren said:

Context
@Michael

Over the past decade, how many of those "tens of thousands of lawsuits against individuals" have occurred in Canada and resulted in disproportionate statutory damage awards?
December 03, 2010

Napalm said:

...
@Off Topic: "So here's the new question: when the Spanish Congress votes on America's copyright law this month, will they vote for their sovereignty, or act like a US puppet state? "

Depend on whom pays for their electoral campaign.

As far as I know there is no big cartel in some other industry that has interests opposed to RIAA/MPAA. So there is no alternate source of money if you don't do what they want. This is why they always have their way in US at least.

Nap.
December 03, 2010

Crockett said:

Further thought while chatting with John ...
Crockett said...
Suing customers in Canada would probably be the worst move the content industry could make. It will reinforce the perception that it is American big business who is running the show. It will have the absolute opposite consequences intended. France, with the harshest IP penalty laws on the planet, has seen an INCREASE in infringement since it's law were enacted.

I don't say this so infringers can have a free ride, just a warning that this is not a wise remedy.

Fri Dec 03, 09:16:00 PM EST
Crockett said...
John, it sounds like we do have some common ground here, and I acknowledge your point that some of the things I suggested are being implemented in some sectors.

On the topic of disrespect for copyright, that is really a chicken and the egg dilemma. It is true infringement took off when file sharing became easier but was that explosion the seed of disrespect or a consequence of it, or both?

Regardless of the blame one thing is evident, it exists. Now the question is how to fix it? Will harsher deterrents do the trick? That has not be the case in other parts of the world it has been tried, I fail to see why it would be different here.

Fri Dec 03, 09:18:00 PM EST
Crockett said...
I can understand the anger and desire to punish those who's behavior is hurting your industry. But if cooler heads can prevail and energy is instead put towards generating good will, positive PR and creating increased value then that will be of more benefit to your bottom lines.

The sad but still relevant fact is the public, having it's own parallel distribution system, has the upper hand in this battle. Technological or legislative efforts are unlikely to succeed as enforcement is near impossible.

Therefore it is incumbent on the creative industry, for it's own well being and survival, to court the public rather than trying to regulate it.

I have made some suggestions to those ends in my previous posts, but other solutions or enticements may work better. But what has to happen first is a cognitive shift on both the part of industry and the public to do things differently. Things just continuing down the current road does not look to get any better for anyone.
December 03, 2010

Tory Burch Shoes said:

Tory Burch Shoes
Hey ,boys and girls,nice to talk with you if you can see my message,and
also it's our fate to share my idea with you.what do you think of it?
December 04, 2010

Napalm said:

...
@Crockett: "France, with the harshest IP penalty laws on the planet, has seen an INCREASE in infringement since it's law were enacted. "

And how exactly do you measure infringement? It's done in so many ways, I severely doubt that anyone can measure it accurately. Most of the time we hear of figures that "the industry" came up with as "estimates" but I never saw it being done scientifically - like in those papers with "abstract - objectives - materials and methods - results - conclusion"?

As for the lawsuits. If they can do them for a couple of years until the public outrage cannot be neglected anymore, their objectives are met. They would have made some additional money that would had justified increased bonuses. Remember that executives of public owned corporations rarely have strategies spanning on a longer term than the next quarter.

Nap.
December 04, 2010

Please cover this said:

Wikileaks - quote by Ron Paul


Wikileaks - In a free society, we are supposed to know the truth. In a society where truth becomes treason, we are in big trouble.

quote by Ron Paul

Follow the link I posted.
December 04, 2010

d said:

...
@Warren,
The RIAA tried o sue, but stopped when they were asked for evidence before being allowed to proceed. Insteaad of providing the evidence they dropped the case.
December 04, 2010

K-Bert said:

Itunes Canada
Does anyone know how reputable Itunes Canada is?
It says on the site you can buy and download movies,
as well as rent.

Does anyone know the cost of buying a movie on Itunes?
If so, how much? If this bill goes through with strict
consequences against the consumer, the government and
the big companies should at least give us fair pricing
to what online services are out there/ or may be
coming to Canada in the future.

I would also think it fair for people, who are paying for
a service like Itunes, to be able buy, download and burn
movies so they can watch it at anytime. Otherwise, it
would just be a renting scheme, where it was like you really didn't "buy that movie".

I'd be lying if I said I hadn't downloaded things for free in the past. Why? It's wasn't just to get freebies. I walked into a mall and found a three disk set of the TV series Night Gallery, season two. It was priced at $70 CDN!
That's outrageous! And no, I'd never been able to obtain that same box set for free.lol

I had supported the CRIA and RIAA for several years. I have quite an extensive "legally purchased" amount of
CD's I purchased over time, so I have very rarely
downloaded music in the past.

If people can no longer download copyrighted material for personal use, we should at least be treated fairly by having services that are "reasonably priced", with a
good selection of both music and movies available.

It's basically all about fairness. Not all consumers
are living in a mansion on the Bridal Path or
Richmond Hill. Make pricing these online services affordable, so that all Canadians are able to enjoy
it.
December 04, 2010

Napalm said:

...
@K-bert: "Not all consumers are living in a mansion on the Bridal Path or
Richmond Hill. Make pricing these online services affordable, so that all Canadians are able to enjoy it."

But how would could you afford a mansion on Bridal Path if you charged your customers any lesser prices....

Nap. :-)
December 04, 2010

Warren said:

waiting on context
@d and @michael

thanks d. however, your reply doesn't respond to my question i posed to michael: how many of the "tens of thousands of lawsuits against individuals" that michael cites to support his argument have occurred in Canada and resulted in disproportionate statutory damage awards?
December 04, 2010

K-Bert said:

...
@Nap

Was that a hint of sarcasm there, Nap? lol

Hey, some of the big shots running these big
companies aren't living in shacks. You might
be able to find some of them on the Bridal Path.lol

The CEO's and COO's of the companies, including
the ones who run these online services could cheapen
their prices just a little bit. I'd still be willing
to bet they wouldn't have to live in less luxury
then they currently do.
December 04, 2010

Chris A said:

@Warren
Why do they need to happen in Canada?

They have happened elsewhere, so I'm not exactly sure what your point is since it doesn't seem to be related to this at all.
December 04, 2010

Warren said:

context continued
@chris a

well, because michael's argument concerns a proposed change to canadian law. we've had statutory damages in canada for well over a decade, so I am curious to know how many of the "tens of thousands of lawsuits against individuals" have occurred in canada and resulted in disproportionate statutory damage awards, in michael's view.
December 04, 2010

Chris A said:

@Warren
Still not seeing how that remotely applies to what he said with the rest of the world not really using them. And $5000 being a lot of money for most people.
December 04, 2010

Jason K said:

...
@K-Bert - in order for new media to be affordable, ISP's also need to lower the bandwidth cap. Otherwise per movie it's actually cheaper to rent off of on demand cable services the major teleco's own.

@Warren - I'm getting the distinct impression here that MG has used stat damages in the past as a fear tactic to attract attention to his personal views. In reality, Canadian consumers don't support any stat damages. It doesn't matter "if" it's happened, it's "could" it happen that a lot of people are up in arms about. MG has his own personal ambitions in this debate, which is why I left a few months ago and resigned as a chapter head for the FCFC movement. I don't support personal agendas.

In my view along with many independent academics, consumers shouldn't be deterred from downloading and sharing at all. Producers need to bring in a lot more experimentation with respect to ads and ad bugs on these films and make them accessible for free on the networks, essentially bringing the traditional broadcasting ad model to online productions. In fact embracing this sharing can contribute to the overall success of a production.

A shift of income in the overall music industry suggests no money is being lost at all on a whole as a result of P2P (and this industry is growing sustainably and has been since 2005). Certain areas of this industry that have become obsolete and need to adjust in order to stay ahead of the game, which they are actively refusing to do (which is where a lot of the cries for more copyright protection is coming from). I don’t think users of P2P are engaged are pirates, they are simply accessing a new medium that is misunderstood and underused by industry. Geist disagrees with this for some reason, which puts him way out in left field with respect to the leading indie academic (the people that do not have personal or financial stakes here) view globally on file sharing.


December 05, 2010

Napalm said:

Google schmoogle
ZOMG pirates took over Google!

I just googled for "vegas movie studio addons" as I was interested to see if anyone makes and sells a DTS codec for it.... and guess what.... the first 2-3 pages of results are all to torrent sites....

I seriously cannot use google for finding a legal source... Duh...

Nap.
December 05, 2010

Crockett said:

...
@Warren "I am curious to know how many of the "tens of thousands of lawsuits against individuals" have occurred in canada and resulted in disproportionate statutory damage awards"

I think we agree, at least I hope so, that we don't want to see the same copyright trolling/racketeering that is going on in the USA/UK here in Canada. Not only is it an abuse of the justice system, I believe it is counter productive to the well being of creators as it just creates more animosity on the part of the consumer.

With that in mind, why is Sookman and the CRIA pushing for higher stat damage ceilings if they don't intend to use such a system? True, up to this point we have not seen this happening in Canada yet but that does not preclude it happening once C-32 is passed.

The content industry should be building bridges rather than dropping bombs.
December 05, 2010

Napalm said:

...
@Crockett:

I propose that CRIA sends $5000 cheques to all canadians, based on the promise we won't cash them.

LOL.

Nap.
December 05, 2010

Eric L. said:

RE: Napalm (late response)
TPMs I would argue make absolutely no difference in cheating. Take BZFlag, a Free-software multiplayer game. It has absolutely no TPM whatsoever for preventing cheating, but the amount of cheating that takes place is slim to none, and usually is due to varying internet connection speeds more than anything else. As well, if TPMs "solved" cheating, then how is cheating still taking place?
December 05, 2010

Eric L. said:

(cont'd)
Furthermore, since BZFlag's source code is publicly available, you would think cheating would increase, but that is simply not the case.
December 05, 2010

Napalm said:

...
@Eric L.: "As well, if TPMs "solved" cheating, then how is cheating still taking place? "

Since I moved my gaming to PS3, I never encountered again stuff like in Battlefield 2 on PC. Things like rapid successions of headshots from the other corner of the map with a MG, with my team decimated in the next second it spawned. Which is impossible to do "manually". So it was so bad that it was not possible to play it at all.

On PS3 I can see players exploiting "map glitches" and other bugs in the game itself but these are bearable and usually patched after a while.

Nap.
December 05, 2010

Jason K said:

...
"@K-Bert - in order for new media to be affordable, ISP's also need to lower the bandwidth cap. Otherwise per movie it's actually cheaper to rent off of on demand cable services the major teleco's own."

Meant to say raise or even better yet get rid of the bandwidth cap.
December 05, 2010

R. Bassett Jr. said:

A simple google search...
Turns up,

http://docs.lucidinteractive.ca/index.php/Cracking_WEP_and_WPA_Wireless_Networks

So, either we should all stop using wireless devices, forsaking their convenience, or perhaps the Canadian government can whip us up some magical, unhackable home wireless system that will protect our Internet connection from the folks who won't care at all that WE got fined for THEIR downloads...

There are simply too many holes in all of this fluff that serve to do nothing more than punish the innocent while continuing to allow the criminals to... be criminal. I find it both sad and pathetic that "the average joe" has to worry about protecting himself from criminals as well as the stupidity of the people he elected to protect him from the criminals. What the hell are we really paying these people for? To play polo and sip tea on our dime?

Wake up, government - the retribution of the many is greater than the lack of vision of the few; we're not the ones who are going to pay for this crap. Most of are already struggling to pay our legitimate bills...
December 06, 2010

Crockett said:

...
@Jason "Meant to say raise or even better yet get rid of the bandwidth cap."

Not gonna happen while they have their own recently purchased media holdings to protect ... and while the CRTC remains toothless.
December 06, 2010

Warren said:

...
i would have thought that a decade plus of canadian experience with its own statutory damage provision would indeed be an integral part of a discussion on what, if any, change canadian law requires in that regard. nonetheless, there is some interesting logic and commentary generated here by my question for mg.
December 06, 2010

Chris A said:

@Warren
The problem is that it really doesn't seem to have much to do with the actual thing he posted. He posted about how most of the world doesn't use the statutory damage system, and that $5000 is a lot of money for most people. It's an argument against the removal of the $5000 limit, not that statutory damages should be removed all together.
December 06, 2010

Jason K said:

@Warren
To put things in a bit more perspective, our Canadian courts system deals with situations a lot different than the US. In the US almost everything is settled in court, and US judges are far happy to provide stat damages than in Canada.

In Canada it is very rare for courts to offer high stat damage awards. The courts are more interested in providing punitive damages (actual damages). Since actual damages really can't be proven with respect to P2P downloading (nor has this been proven in court in the US either. Most cases won were with high stat damage awards, not punitive) is probably why you will never see any court case with respect to users file sharing in Canada. MG should be fully aware of this, and I’m pretty sure he is. Rather than telling Canadians the truth about the situation it seems to me he’s using the fear of it to seek attention to his views. Canadian users also have a strong defence to any court action since industries own numbers prove a cycle of creative destruction and the loss of money in certain areas of industry can be contributed to obsolete economic models and the reluctance to change. This can now be proven!

So in reality what we should be talking about here is the legalization of file sharing and a levy system around that so there is a reconnect of value to these works that are being shared. Simply deterring the user either with notice to notice, graduated response, or stat damages on Canadian users will not benefit creators at all financially. It doesn't reflect on the legal and economic realities faced by those in the Canadian creative industries, which is why all of a sudden there's a huge push by industry for the levy system including from those that have opposed it in the past. Something many of MG supporters to ponder over.


December 06, 2010

Jason K said:

@Crockett
`Not gonna happen while they have their own recently purchased media holdings to protect ... and while the CRTC remains toothless.`This is one of the reason why I think the digital strategy consultations should have been held prior to the copyright consultations. This issue will probably not be solved anytime soon, and the decline in profits from new economic digital models will be blamed on the user, rather than the actual cause. Because of this Canada will be far, far, far behind other developed nations on new economic models when it comes to new media, and Canadian creators will feel the pinch of this as investors look towards other countries as a result. This is one of the main reasons why I left the new media industry. It`s worth peanuts to investors in Canada right now due to concerns of this. It`ll be better to work for new media companies outside of Canada until this changes.
December 06, 2010

Napalm said:

...
@Jason K:

The problem with Canadian media is that Canada is a small audience.

You either do some general audience stuff and thus compete directly with our neighbors south of the border (it can be done but success is an exception not the rule). Or you do some localized stuff, no competition but a small audience.

Let me bring you "Les Bougons" as an example. 6 millions Quebecers laughed their a***s off that one, but if you're Ontarian your reaction will be "Huh? WTF is this?". I lived in Quebec for a while and I enjoyed it too, but my Ontarian friends don't get it, they'd rather watch "Married... With Children" any day.

Nap.

December 06, 2010

IamME said:

...
@Nap
"Let me bring you "Les Bougons" as an example. 6 millions Quebecers laughed their a***s off that one, but if you're Ontarian your reaction will be "Huh? WTF is this?"."

In my experience Quebecers seem to have a much more "European" sense of humor, where the rest of Canada tends to lean towards a US sense of humor. I personally prefer European humor such as Monty Python, League of Gentlemen, and so many great sitcoms too numerous to mention, IT Crowd, Black Books, etc. My wife just doesn't "get" the humor usually. She's much more a fan of things like 3's Company, 2 and Half Men, How I Met Your Mother, and the such. We just agree to disagree and tend to not watch any of it, on either side. I find a lot of American humor crass and uninteligent. Married with Children is a great example, "Rosanne" is another. There are exceptions of course, I'm speaking generally.
December 06, 2010

Jason K said:

@Napalm
"The problem with Canadian media is that Canada is a small audience."

Not anymore. With P2P and new media sites, the "problem" has to do with keeping media to a small audience rather competiting with a global market. The media industries would rather keep things to a selected few in an oligopoly, rather than open it up for mass compitition.

View the first 3 parts of this presentation. It explains this quite well:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LxCoCTc3T5Q

December 06, 2010

Napalm said:

...
@IanMe: "In my experience Quebecers seem to have a much more "European" sense of humor,"

That and there also references to local culture, habits and history. And half of the fun is the language itself ("joual"). English subtitles don't do it any justice.

Nap.
December 06, 2010

Napalm said:

...
Jason K:

I have no issue with shutting down "pirate" sites and so.

My issues are:

1. That I want to use as I see fit the CD/DVD/Blu-Rays that I legally bought (and I agree that I should not distribute copies outside my household); this includes being able to skip commercials and making "fair use" of them without being hindered in any way by some stupid DRM scheme.

2. These tools to combat "piracy" should not transform themselves into *censorship* tools.

Nap.
December 06, 2010

Eric L. said:

...
"2. These tools to combat "piracy" should not transform themselves into *censorship* tools."

Unfortunately, that is almost never the case.
December 06, 2010

Mark said:

...
After having listened to the proceedings of all of these meetings, I would very much like to put forth one final letter to our government on the matter. I am wondering if such a letter go to my MP, however, who has not, to the best of my knowledge, ever personally expressed any concerns on this matter. If not, to whom should I address it? Is it problematic that it is 3 pages long?


December 06, 2010

Jason K said:

@Napalm
I don't think you viewed those videos. Those videos were basically how industry can obtain value in the sharing of content through embedded advertising with cost analysis. This is a possible value chain for industry. The most effective tool I think to combat non-licensed torrent sites, is for industry to open up their own, and start utilizing this technology. I think if industry were to do this, the "illegal" sites would fade out. They’ve tried, but did a purposeful piss poor job at even remotely understanding the need consumers have to share media to say “hey we’ve tried it and it didn’t work”.

As far as tools to combat “piracy”, it’s more to preserve oligopolies and monopolies. This war on piracy has nothing to do with actually piracy and combating it, it has more to do with who controls the market share in industry. That control however has already been lost, and all they are trying to do right now is buy off some time with lobby efforts on our pathetically dumb politicians who are falling for this. You can’t deter anyone from sharing media. The market wants it and needs this, and whatever is put into place to combat it will fail, because the market has already decided. It’s up to those in industry to utilize this sharing and profit from it, which is possible. They just don’t want to do this, because if they do, media becomes a global market with massive amounts of competition, even from amateur producers, and indies.
December 06, 2010

Jason K said:

@Mark
I'm pretty sure that the committee would be delighted to hear from the public. They are or should be representing us at this hearing. All committee members e-mail addresses are:

Angus.C@parl.gc.ca
info@kellyblock.ca
Boucher.S@parl.gc.ca
braidp@parl.gc.ca
Cardin.S@parl.gc.ca
delmad@parl.gc.ca
garnem@parl.gc.ca
LakeM@parl.gc.ca
Lavallee.C@parl.gc.ca
mctead@parl.gc.ca
Rodriguez.P@parl.gc.ca
joe@joeprestonmp.ca

I've already sent my letter in: http://bit.ly/gWgOHv
December 06, 2010

Napalm said:

...
@Jason K: "Those videos were basically how industry can obtain value in the sharing of content through embedded advertising with cost analysis."

I profoundly dislike advertising. I am willing to pay for media without such. Problem is that DVDs come with "embedded advertising" whether I like it or not.

So what products do we have for people willing to pay?

It think that "the industry" is viewing DVDs like being a TV channel or something where they can package any crap with the movie and mandate by law that you watch that crap.

Nap.

Nap.
December 06, 2010

Napalm said:

...
@Jason K: "They just don’t want to do this, because if they do, media becomes a global market with massive amounts of competition, even from amateur producers, and indies. "

Don't think so. Since we were talking about "Les Bougons" earlier, do you think Bollywood is capable of producing something similar? I guess not, be it just for the cultural differences. You have to be a Quebecois in order to make it.

Of course we could have tons of documentaries about sea life, nature, world cuisine, travel and stuff like that. There you can indeed produce some "global" stuff.

Nap.
December 06, 2010

Jason K said:

@Napalm
"I profoundly dislike advertising. I am willing to pay for media without such."Then I take it you don't have cable or are a cable subscriber, or watch any live sports, or even browse the net? Have you gone to the movies lately (you pay to watch ads there)? It's the life blood of the media industry. Like it or not it's here to stay. I know people who would gladly deal with ad bugs to watch their programs free or at a severely reduced price. Most of them have a cable tv subscription, and listen to the radio and range within the billions. It's already happening to an extent on the web already, and both the market and investors expect this from media types.

If you took serious exception to this, you wouldn't have a connection to the net, and probably live in the woods somewhere in Northern Quebec drinking homemade beer, and living off the deer you shot lastnight, or better yet not even know what the term copyright or DRM means to begin with.

The reality is we all have to deal with it in some form, even before a movie starts on the DVD with the logo's of the studio's, and previews. To simply state that you won't buy anything with advertising on it, is more of an attempt to disagree with a new value chain in which you are already used to and paying for on many levels. It's hypocritical. You’re already doing it, and supporting it.
December 06, 2010

Jason K said:

@Napalm
There also is media out there that offers a value chain without advertising and based on a subscription model. That should also work as well. If you don't like advertising, you don't have to watch the media with embedded ads. Just like facebook, if you don't like what they are doing to privacy issues, unsubscribe. Nobody is forcing you to watch ads, you have the power to not purchase, not buy, and use the power button if you have to.
December 06, 2010

Jason K said:

@Napalm
"Since we were talking about "Les Bougons" earlier, do you think Bollywood is capable of producing something similar? I guess not, be it just for the cultural differences. You have to be a Quebecois in order to make it. "

That doesn't mean a global audience won't like it. You don't have to be Indian to like Bollywood stuff either. Although I think Les Bougons may have a unique issue. Quebecois accents are harsh and not proper French ;) But as long as there is French subtitles I think it would do well, or could get a global following. Just because you live in Quebec doesn't mean the rest of the civilized world doesn't get your culture. In fact the efforts of preserving that culture may lie in global acceptance and exposure. Why do you think Bollywood films are popular. French is spoken more widely than Indian.

December 07, 2010

Napalm said:

...
@Jason K:

Yes I do have a basic cable subscription since in my area you cannot get much with an antenna. However I rarely watch any TV programming, mostly news/weather/traffic watch.

As for advertising.

Most of my media purchases are music CDs. No advertising on them yet, thank you.

Second place are DVD/Blu-Ray with classical music / opera concert recordings, mostly european stuff, there's no advertising on them except the recording label logo for 5 seconds when you start them.

As for movies, I found out that renting them from Sony Playstation Store or cable on demand saves you from watching advertising. I do have a small collection of movie DVD/Blu-Rays but it is a very tight collection. It has to be really special in order for me to want to keep a copy around.

Nap.
December 07, 2010

IamME said:

..
Jason K said:
"Quebecois accents are harsh and not proper French ;)"

When I lived in Newfoundland I dated a girl for a couple years who was from St. Pierre and she spoke "proper" Parisian French. Every time we were on the ferry to Nova Scotia they would do all the announcements in English and French and every time she would get upset and say something along the lines of, "THAT'S NOT FRENCH!!".
December 07, 2010

Jason K said:

@IamME
A large portion of my family is from Quebec City, so my take on the accents comes from lots of love from the French part of me. I have friends from France, and the first time I heard them speak with the Parisian accent, it was like listening to French in High Def. Crystal clear and just such an awesome sounding accent. I'm used to the Quebecois accent in my family. Sometimes it can be hard to understand. It's very rough sounding compared to the Parisian accent.

Quebec is also very unique, and I do understand the obsession they have with preserving their culture. A lot of my family history is in that province, but they can get overly obsessed with preservation of culture at times. They should share that culture a lot more with others around the world to spark interest and ensure preservation (Celine Dion doesn’t count). The sharing part of culture can also apply to the copyright debate as well. We should be ensuring preservation and interest in global culture and arts, not taking a whacking stick to those that do express interest.


Quebec is also very unique, and I do understand the obsession they have with perserving their culture. I just think sometimes they are too obsessed with it.

December 07, 2010

Mark said:

...
@Jason K

So what do I do... CC everybody on that list? Which should be the primary recipient?
December 07, 2010

Jason K said:

@Mark
I think everybody on that list should be the primary recipient. I addressed my letter to all of them. I started with "Dear Committee Members"

December 08, 2010

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