In the wake of Foreign Minister Maxime Bernier's resignation, there is growing speculation about a cabinet shuffle over the summer. Over the past few days, the focus has centred on swapping Jim Prentice and Jim Flaherty – Prentice goes to Finance and Flaherty to Industry. If this is true, Prentice would have the luxury of introducing the Canadian DMCA next week safe in the knowledge that Flaherty will be forced to answer many challenging questions. Indeed, the talk in Ottawa is that Prentice has been pushing to put the bill on the fast track within the House with the possibility of summer hearings on the legislation (and the convenient ability to deflect questions by noting that the bill is before committee). A shuffle would be even better for Prentice – a bill opposed by many Canadians becomes Jim Flaherty's problem and he exits the issue largely unscathed. As for Flaherty, now might be a good time to start taking an interest in copyright policy.
Jim Flaherty’s DMCA?
May 27, 2008
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Law, Privacy and Surveillance in Canada in the Post-Snowden Era (University of Ottawa Press, 2015)
The Copyright Pentalogy: How the Supreme Court of Canada Shook the Foundations of Canadian Copyright Law (University of Ottawa Press, 2013)
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In the Public Interest: The Future of Canadian Copyright Law (Irwin Law, 2005) .
Might not be the worst thing that could happen. After all, if Flaherty has nothing invested in the bill, he might be just as happy killing it off rather than defending someone else’s unpopular work.
On the other hand, Flaherty could easily steer it through, blaming his predecessor for hanging such an unpopular bill around his neck.