Post Tagged with: "statutory damages"

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Misleading on Fair Dealing, Part 10: Rejecting Access Copyright’s Demand to Force Its Licence on Canadian Education

My series on misleading on fair dealing concludes today with a post on Access Copyright’s demands for copyright reform. The copyright collective’s strategy is simply to force educational institutions to pay for its licence. It seeks to do so through two legal reforms: (i) restrict the use of fair dealing for education and (ii) massively increase the risk of liability through the imposition of statutory damages. The proposed reforms run directly counter to Canada’s longstanding commitment to balanced copyright, would reduce choice and innovation in licensing content online, and leave students and taxpayers facing risks of multi-million dollar liability that far exceeds the value of any copying.

This ten part series has addressed many of the misleading claims that have surfaced in recent months about fair dealing and copying practices in Canada:

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December 3, 2018 5 comments News
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Tinkering With Copyright in Bill C-68: My Appearance Before the Standing Committee on Finance

I appeared earlier this week before the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance as part of its review of Bill C-86, the Budget Implementation Act. The bill features extensive intellectual property provisions arising out of the IP strategy referenced in Budget 2018. My comments were consistent with previous posts on the changes to notice-and-notice, patents, and the Copyright Board.  My opening remarks are posted below.

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November 9, 2018 1 comment News
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Canadian Government Rejects Access Copyright’s Demand for Statutory Damages

Earlier this year, I wrote about lobbying pressure to “harmonize” statutory damages for copyright collectives. Access Copyright, which supported the measure, argued that the massive escalation in potential damage awards were needed for three reasons: deterrence, promotion of settlement negotiations, and efficient use of court resources. Yet as I argued in this post, none of the arguments rang true.

After months of internal wrangling, the government unveiled its proposed reforms to the Copyright Board yesterday as part of Bill C-86, its Budget Implementation Act. The bill contains many changes requested by copyright stakeholders. With respect to the statutory damages provisions, however, it has rightly left the statutory damages distinction between certain collectives in place, meaning that Access Copyright will not be able to rely on statutory damages for non-payment of tariffs, relying instead on actual damages (if any).

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October 30, 2018 2 comments News
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Access Copyright Calls for Massive Expansion of Damage Awards of Up To Ten Times Royalties

The Canadian government’s consultation on reform to the Copyright Board recently closed and the 60 written responses were just posted online (my response – which focuses on the public interest role of the Board – can be found here). I will have a more fulsome review of the responses in the weeks ahead, but in the meantime one of the most radical recommendations, from Access Copyright, is worthy of comment. The copyright collective has called for a massive expansion of damage awards, seeking a new statutory damages provision that could result in damage awards ten times the size of actual applicable royalties.

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October 30, 2017 3 comments News

Liberals Demand More Draconian IP Provisions: Propose Adding New Statutory Damages to Bill C-8

Liberal MP Judy Sgro continued her efforts yesterday to add lobbyist-inspired provisions to Bill C-8, the anti-counterfeiting legislation. Having already proposed removing the personal exception for travelers (leading to increased border searches) and a “simplified procedure” for the seizure of goodsthat would remove court oversight in the destruction of goods in a greater number of cases, Sgro proposed an amendment to add statutory damages with a mandatory minimum of $1,000 and a maximum of $100,000 in liability. The provision would limit the discretion of judges to order damages based on the evidence.

The statutory damages provision was another ask for intellectual property lobby groups. As I noted in my appearance before the committee:

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December 5, 2013 13 comments News