The McMurdy Profile

Deirdre McMurdy runs a profile of me in today's Ottawa Citizen.  The column focuses on the growth of the Fair Copyright for Canada Facebook group and last week's Copyright MPs posting. While I think focusing on a handful of people runs the risk of missing the much bigger picture – the concern with the Canadian DMCA extends to tens of thousands of people who are writing, calling, blogging, and potentially voting on it – I stand by my quote that "we've created a strong, collective voice on this issue and if the upcoming legislation doesn't reflect that, if Jim Prentice just treats it like another check mark in the box on his mandate letter, a lot of people will feel betrayed. The government will have sent the message that their voice doesn't matter."


  1. Disapointing
    I think it’s sad that of all the points we’ve striven to make, the only thing that’s sticking out with these people is that we want a “free net” and are opposed to renumeration for use of copyrighted works… That’s missing the point by a long shot! One-sided point of view indeed…

  2. Motive
    There was an article this morning about a company, Qtrax, which has invested just shy of a million dollars, offering 25 million free music downloads online in combination with advertisements, claiming deals with the recording industry. Now the big four say not so fast. Here is a system that would not only be profitable as it is for television and also pay copyright HOLDERS for their works, but would also effectively eliminate music piracy. Yet the big four once again hesitates?? Perhaps their motive wasn’t lost revenue after all but control and monitoring of the internet users.

  3. Perhaps, Seneca, their concern is that Qtrax was claiming what it did not have, i.e. deals with them. Perhaps another concern is that free downloads with revenue if any tied to ads, isn’t in any way a guarantee of getting paid.

  4. Frank: Are you saying we ARE opposed to payment for use of copyright works? That\\\’s certainly not my take on these discussions. The issue surely is that there must be payment, there must be some guarantee of protection, and that these objectives must somehow be achieved within a framework of trust. I think it extremely unlikely that any government and especially this government will allow copyright reform that jeopardises the copyright industries.

  5. Misrepresentation
    The article appears very assumptive and presumptive. Its to your credit to point to it.

    Like did Dr. Geist organize a protest in Calgary, or did Kenton Lam, on his own initiative? I think reading the goings on at the time, Kenton did, and did claim so in the MSM.

    Does a Facebook discussant that says there should be no copyright law, or everything should be free, mean Dr. Geist has said or believes that? The headline seems to suggest the fringe voice for selling copy, but not the core opinions of the profiled.

    Dr. Geist, you keep on keeping on. The trashy impolitic are not used to seeing individual people willing to pay attention, get educated on their digital age rights, exercise and defend those rights. You are and have been stellar in my opinion!

  6. Re: Disapointing

    I think that some people in our midst do have that point of view, but it certainly isn\’t mine nor does it appear to be Dr Geist\’s. My point was that spinning the article that way is misleading.

  7. @ on
    No deal? Do you think a million dollar venture going public in Cannes with a flourish would honestly not proceed without some sort of beforehand deal in this day and age? This isn\’t some booth at a convention. It was the convention. The recording industry has time and time again pulled back whenever a reasonable solution to their claim of lost revenue is addressed. This has to make one wonder about their motive and their desperation to hang onto their excuse and not have it solved, for change in privacy laws. Once again I say they represent an industry higher than them that is more interested in legislation that gives them access to us and not just necessarily for illegal downloading legamtbb1l purposes. Also.. tell me. Do you know of any actors or studios that don\’t get paid when their work is on tv and paid for by advertisers?

  8. Seneca –

    Actors get paid by studios. Studios get paid by the networks. Networks get paid by the advertisers. The actors and studios do not get paid by advertising.

    In your model, the ISPs would collect the advertising dollars and pay for content so that people come. Sounds like what U2’s manager is saying.