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.