I'm currently in Rio, Brazil for the Internet Governance Forum. This Associated Press story captures the most challenging question of the event – how does the network deal with the next billion Internet users?
Archive for November 13th, 2007
The Canadian Musical Reproduction Rights Agency Ltd. and CRIA have entered into a new mechanical licensing agreement that runs until 2012.
My weekly technology law column (Toronto Star version, Ottawa Citizen version, homepage version) focuses on the Library and Archives Canada's (LAC) recently released draft Canadian Digital Information Strategy that may provide some momentum behind digitization plans in Canada. In today's technological world, most content is "born digital," yet there remains a rich history of books, music, film, photos, and other works in analog form. Since people increasingly have access solely to digital content, policy makers must confront the challenge of how to bring all of our culture and historical knowledge into the digital realm.
The strategy makes for sobering reading – Canada may have once been a world-leader in Internet access, yet today it finds itself years behind other countries in developing a clearly focused strategy to link digital access with digital information. Most of our major trading partners, including the United States, European Union, Australia, New Zealand, and China have already established digitization strategies that feature robust programs and ambitious plans. Moreover, some of those countries have benefited from private sector digitization initiatives led by Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, and the Internet Archive. Those countries recognized that an effective digitization strategy yields significant domestic benefits such as wider access to knowledge for all communities, a greater appreciation of national cultural heritage, and the facilitation of lifelong learning. There are tangible international advantages as well, since digital access supports cultural exports and collaborative scientific research.
In order to close the ever-widening gap, the strategy focuses on strengthening Canadian digital content creation, preserving older content, as well as maximizing access and use. The three-pronged strategy hits many of the right buttons by emphasizing the need to support the creation of digital content (many government funding programs are still stuck in the analog era), highlighting the value in identifying the priority works in need of digitization, and fostering a framework that emphasizes access.
Yet despite its laudable goals, the draft strategy suffers from timidity.
Appeared in the Toronto Star on November 12, 2007 as Digitization Strategy Stuck in a Time Warp Appeared in the Ottawa Citizen on November 13, 2007 as Canada Has To Move Its Digital Strategy out of the Analog World Appeared in the Thyee on November 13, 2007 as Digitize Our […]