Post Tagged with: "CIPPIC"

copy culture by Will Lion (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) https://flic.kr/p/4ZvMLY

When is a Copy not a Copy?: Technological Neutrality at Stake at the Supreme Court of Canada

The Supreme Court of Canada heard arguments yesterday in the copyright case of CBC v. SODRAC. While the case was ultimately about whether CBC should be required to pay royalties for incidental copies necessary to use new broadcast technologies, at stake was something far bigger: the future of technological neutrality under Canadian copyright law.

CBC argued that technological neutrality means that it should not pay for incidental copies since it already pays for the use of music in broadcasts. The incidental copies – copies which are made to create the final broadcast version of a program (including copies from the master to a content management system or other internal copies to facilitate the broadcast) – do not generate revenue and are simply made to facilitate use of the music that is paid for through a licence. SODRAC, a Quebec-based copyright collective, countered that CBC had always paid for these copies and that the CBC argument was the reverse of technological neutrality, since it wanted to avoid payment in the digital world for copies that were being paid for with earlier, analog technologies.

The case emerged as an important one when the question of the meaning of technological neutrality took centre stage. That elicited interveners such as Music Canada, which argued for a narrow interpretation of the principle, claiming that it was just an “interpretative metaphor” (similar arguments about users’ rights being no more than a metaphor were rejected by the Supreme Court in 2012). The danger in the case from a technological neutrality perspective is that the Supreme Court could roll back its finding that technological neutrality is a foundational principle within the law. Moreover, if the court were to rule that all copies – no matter how incidental – are copies for the purposes of the Copyright Act, there would be the very real possibility of payment demands for the myriad of copies that occur through modern technologies.

Read more ›

March 17, 2015 28 comments News

Beyond Users’ Rights: Supreme Court Entrenches Technological Neutrality as a New Copyright Principle

Last week, I posted on the significance of the Supreme Court of Canada’s five copyright decisions with an emphasis on the shift from fair dealing to fair use. This week, I have several additional posts planned including one on the implications for Access Copyright as well as a broader examination of how the court has elevated users’ rights within Canadian copyright law. This post focuses on the second major development in the cases: the articulation of technological neutrality as a foundational principle of Canadian copyright. The technological neutrality principle could have an enormous long-term impact on Canadian copyright, posing a threat to some copyright collective tariff proposals and to the newly enacted digital lock rules.

The technological neutrality principle is discussed in several cases, but gets its most important airing in the Entertainment Software Association of Canada v. SOCAN decision. The majority of the court states:

Read more ›

July 16, 2012 11 comments News

The Daily Digital Lock Dissenter, Day 31: CIPPIC

The Samuelson-Glushko Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic, based at the University of Ottawa, was established in 2003 as Canada’s first legal clinic of its kind (I sit on the faculty advisory board). CIPPIC’s mission includes “to fill voids in public policy debates on technology law issues, ensure balance in policy and law-making processes, and provide legal assistance to under-represented organizations and individuals on matters involving the intersection of law and technology.” CIPPIC’s comments on the digital lock rules on Bill C-32 included:

Unfortunately, the bill also succumbs to U.S. pressure and makes fair dealing — including the new exceptions for the many ordinary activities of Canadians — illegal whenever there is a “digital lock” on a work.  A digital lock will trump all other rights, forbidding all fair dealing and keeping a work locked up even after its copyright term expires. Overall, these digital lock provisions are some of the most restrictive in the world.

To achieve a fair balance between users and copyright owners, the government needs to fix the digital lock provisions before this bill passes into law. A fair way to rework this flaw is to ensure that fair dealing with works is always legal, regardless of whether there is a digital lock present.

Read more ›

November 16, 2011 1 comment News

CBC’s Spark on C-32

CBC’s Spark interviewed CIPPIC’s David Fewer on Bill C-32 and implications.  The full interview is posted here.

Read more ›

November 24, 2010 Comments are Disabled Must Reads

CIPPIC Says Facebook Failing Privacy Promises

CIPPIC argues that Facebook has failed to comply with the privacy commitments it made as part of last year’s settlement with the Privacy Commissioner of Canada.

Read more ›

August 27, 2010 1 comment Must Reads