The Benefits of Copyright Reform

One of the responses to my post on the latest CRIA poll warns against referring to "copyright reform" just because Graham Henderson does in the CRIA release.  While I obviously do not support Henderson' s view of changes to Canadian copyright law nor the efforts to prop up Sam Bulte (both financially and rhetorically) against a tough NDP challenger, I do not think that those concerned with balanced copyright and the interests of Canadian education, consumers, and artists should shy away from reform.

For example, Canadian politicians from all parties could do far worse than following the lead of Australian Attorney General Philip Ruddock, who has focused on the need for a balanced approached and is quoted today as saying:

"We should have copyright laws that are more targeted at the real problem. . . we should not treat everyday Australians who want to use technology to enjoy copyright material they have obtained legally as infringers where this does not cause harm to our copyright industries."

The report notes that Ruddock said Australia was likely to add exceptions to current laws to recognize "everyday forms of private copying that do not harm copyright owners."

With the CRIA poll finding that Canadians want to meet international standards, perhaps that is where politicians should begin by advocating for U.S. fair use provisions or Australian time shifting and device shifting reforms.  That approach is certainly likely to generate far more support from the Canadian public than CRIA's proposals to limit the rights of Canadians to enjoy copyright material that they've already paid for and its support for technologies that generate serious  security and privacy risks.


  1. david-darlene says:

    CRIA on Internet/sattellite radio record
    What is their position on this?
    Especially a dvd recorder hooked up to your sattellitte tv. now you can record commercial free channels on sattellite to a dvd which can also be used in your computer.

  2. Copyright peform party
    Hey, I don’t shy away from true copyright reform, either. The problem is with “copyright reform”, the phrase, not the abstraction. It’s come to mean whatever CRIA, the other lobbyists, and their pals in Hull, want it to mean.

    Much like “restoring balance”, the phrase usually bandied about just as further unbalance is to be proposed or legislated.

  3. Russell McOrmond says:

    Putting money where my mouth is.
    As a creator it is important to me that a fellow creator be in the next parliament. We are having major battles against the well funded intermediaries such as those sending money to Bulte. Only with actual creators in parliament who understand the competative issues can Canadian creativity survive against opponents like CRIA, CMPDA and CAAST members.