Post Tagged with: "dmca"

Canadian DMCA To Be Introduced This Spring

The Hill Times reports this week (issue still not online) that the Conservative government will introduce copyright reform legislation this spring provided that there is no election.  The paper points to two main changes from the Liberals Bill C-60 – tougher anti-circumvention legislation (ie. DMCA-style laws that ban devices that can be used to circumvent as well as provisions that block all circumvention subject to the odd exception) and an educational exception that will provide for free access to web-based materials.

If this report is true, the bill will be remarkable in its ability generate more opposition than any prior copyright bill in Canadian history.  From a policy perspective, it is a disaster – dangerous and unnecessary laws to support DRM and an educational exception that does little to address the needs of the education community while encouraging even greater use of DRM. 

From a political perspective, it is even worse.  Who will oppose the bill?  For starters:

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April 15, 2007 32 comments News

Thinking Outside the Canadian Copyright Box

The Hill Times this week features my special opinion piece on copyright issues (Hill Times version (sub req), homepage version). The column calls attention to Bruce Lehman's recent acknowledgement that "our Clinton administration policies didn't work out very well." Lehman followed the criticism of U.S. policy by issuing a challenge to Canada, urging policy makers and political leaders to think outside the box on future reform.  Lehman argued that Canada was well-positioned to experiment with new approaches consistent with international copyright law and I add that there are some obvious differences between Canada and the U.S. including our trade differences (copyright exporter vs. importer) and the success of the Canadian music market (faster digital download sales growth, more online music sellers on a per capita basis).

Given the Canadian marketplace realities and the Lehman recommendation to chart our own course on copyright, how might Industry Minister Maxime Bernier and Canadian Heritage Minister Bev Oda respond?  I point to three possibilities.

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April 4, 2007 2 comments Columns

Thinking Outside the Canadian Copyright Box

Appeared in the Hill Times on April 2, 2007 as Thinking Outside the Canadian Copyright Box Last month, McGill University hosted an important conference on the future of copyright and the music industry.  The conference brought together music notables such as famed producer Sandy Pearlman and NDP Heritage critic Charlie […]

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April 4, 2007 1 comment Columns Archive

DMCA Architect Acknowledges Need For A New Approach

McGill University hosted an interesting conference today on music and copyright reform.  The conference consisted of two panels plus an afternoon of open dialogue and featured an interesting collection of speakers including Bruce Lehman, the architect of the WIPO Internet Treaties and the DMCA, Ann Chaitovitz of the USPTO, Terry Fisher of Harvard Law School, NDP Heritage critic Charlie Angus, famed music producer Sandy Pearlman, and myself.  A video of the event has been posted in Windows format.

My participation focused on making the case against anti-circumvention legislation in Canada (it starts at about 54:30).  I emphasized the dramatic difference between the Internet of 1997 and today, the harmful effects of the DMCA, the growing movement away from DRM, and the fact that the Canadian market has supported a range of online music services with faster digital music sales growth than either the U.S. or Europe but without anti-circumvention legislation.

The most interesting – and surprising – presentation came from Bruce Lehman, who now heads the International Intellectual Property Institute.  Lehman explained the U.S. perspective in the early 1990s that led to the DMCA (ie. greater control though TPMs), yet when reflecting on the success of the DMCA acknowledged that "our Clinton administration policies didn't work out very well" and "our attempts at copyright control have not been successful" (presentation starts around 11:00).  

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March 23, 2007 18 comments News

The Viacom – YouTube Lawsuit

Text of the lawsuit here. Interesting comments from IP Democracy (noting that Viacom relies on the same laws as YouTube for two video sites it owns), Paul Kedrosky (describing it as the continuing triumph of hidebound copyright law over marketing), and Eric Goldman (on the likelihood of a settlement).  Update: […]

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March 13, 2007 4 comments Must Reads