Thanks to the hard work of my research assistant Keith Rose, posted below is comparison chart of the two Conservative copyright bills – this week's C-32 vs. the 2008 C-61 bill. An annotated version can be accessed here. A straight comparison is available here and embedded below.
Post Tagged with: "c-61"
With a copyright bill only weeks away, thousands of Canadians are again speaking out for a fair, balanced approach. The public interest in copyright has predictably led to mischaracterizations of fair copyright as some claim that it is really about wanting everything for free or about opposing copyright reform. This increasingly leads to a blame the user mentality – the award-winning Vancouver Film School video on DRM and the Amazon Kindle incident from last summer discussed in yesterday's post is labeled as "ridiculous fear-mongering" (yet for years rights holders opened every movie with this film) or users are said to ignore creator concerns with a "gimme" attitude (yet the Writers Union recently urged its members to lobby MPs by claiming that flexible fair dealing would legalize theft).
The reality is that inflammatory and inaccurate rhetoric can be found on both creator and consumer-focused sites. There are undoubtedly some who use fair copyright to justify obvious cases of infringement, just as there are those that use copyright reform to preserve outdated business models or to guard against uses that the Supreme Court of Canada would surely view as fair dealing. Even a cursory search for online discussion demonstrates that claims that "sensationalist campaigning" on Canadian copyright is primarily found on sites such as mine are simply wrong.
So yet again in an effort to separate fact from fiction, here is my submission to the copyright consultation from last summer. It doesn't call for everything to be free, it calls for WIPO implementation, and it emphasizes that updating the law means accounting for both creator and consumer needs. As I've discussed over the past ten days, sources say Canadian Heritage Minister James Moore has largely rejected this submission – along with thousands of other submissions calling for a fair copyright approach – but it can't hurt to reiterate what those reforms could look like. For the many Canadians whose views may also be ignored, now is a good time to remind their MPs and the Ministers what they think the copyright bill should contain.
In addition to my Hill Times op-ed this week on the transformation of Canadian Heritage Minister James Moore from iPod minister to iPadlock minister, the paper includes a second article with some predictions for copyright reform. The opening of the article includes a quote from Canadian Heritage Parliamentary Secretary Dean Del Mastro on the reform process:
"It would be naïve of me to say that we could introduce a bill on copyright that would be loved on all sides."
Del Mastro's comment is consistent with the conventional wisdom on copyright reform, namely that it is a contentious issue pitting users against creators that is difficult to reconcile. Yet the conventional wisdom here may be wrong. It is true that a copyright bill is unlikely to be loved by all sides. In fact, a bill loved by any side is probably a bill that does not strike the right balance (that is one of the reasons Moore's shift to strong support for C-61 digital lock rules is so problematic – one group loves it, some tolerate it, many hate it). Far better, is a bill that is acceptable to all sides. That means there will be compromises for all with the goal of crafting a bill that meets the most stakeholder needs and maintains the copyright balance.
Is that possible? I think so. The key elements in such a bill would include:
With a new copyright bill that may look much like Bill C-61 likely within a matter of weeks, I've launched a new Fair Copyright for Canada Facebook page (distinct from the group) that can be used to keep current and learn more about what can be done as events unfold. […]
Since his appointment as Canadian Heritage minister in 2008, James Moore has carefully crafted an image as "Canada's iPod Minister." Young, bilingual, and tech-savvy, Moore has expressed regular support for the benefits of the Internet and is always ready with a quick "tweet" for his many followers. Yet as my op-ed in the Hill Times notes (HT version (sub required), homepage version), according to the scuttlebutt throughout the copyright community, Moore may be less iPod and more iPadlock. As the government readies its much-anticipated copyright package, Moore is said to be pressing for a virtual repeat of Bill C-61, the most anti-consumer copyright proposal in Canadian history.
Moore's about-face on copyright will come as a surprise to those who have heard his enthusiasm for new technology and the Internet. In June 2009, Moore told Industry Minister Tony Clement's Digital Economy conference that "the old way of doing things is over. These things are all now one. And it's great. And it's never been better. And we need to be enthusiastic and embrace this things."
Those comments were quickly followed by the national copyright consultation that generated thousands of responses, the majority of which called on the government to abandon the C-61 approach in favour of copyright rules that struck a better balance between the interests of creators and consumers.