The National Post devotes its entire masthead editorial today to the copyright debate. The piece is critical of the U.S. DMCA, describing it as a "disaster" and warning against the "incredible absurdities" created by anti-circumvention legislation. It adds:
For Canada to introduce DMCA-style legislation now would do nothing but encourage nuisance lawsuits. There is nothing wrong with tough rules against copyright infringement, but criminalizing behaviour that might facilitate copyright infringement only incidentally is the wrong approach. If that road had been taken when household videotape machines came onto the market – and the movie industry tried very hard in the courts to steer the law in that direction – no one would be allowed to own a VCR.
The editorial concludes by calling on Industry Minister Jim Prentice to heed the likely public backlash by avoiding a Canadian DMCA and reconsidering its planned approach:
Mr. Prentice has been combatting these arguments by insisting that no more public consultation on copyright reform is needed, even though the last round was in 2001. He has also claimed that the Canadian business community has been strongly encouraging him in private to adopt a DMCA-type approach, but a new Business Coalition for Balanced Copyright appeared last week, revealing – to no one's surprise – that major telcos, ISPs, broadcasters and retailers are all against it. It would be a shame if full WIPO compliance had to wait while the government reconsidered the implications of a new technological environment and a newly IP-aware public. But it would be a bigger shame if Mr. Prentice needlessly made political enemies of technology consumers and imperiled a Conservative government's electability for the sake of fast action.