Rajotte’s Response To C-61

I've posted NDP and Liberal responses to C-61 last week, but did not bother posting the standard response from Industry Minister Jim Prentice and Canadian Heritage Minister Josee Verner that has been widely circulated online (and is replicated by many other Conservative MPs).  A blog reader sent along the response received from Conservative MP and Industry Committee chair James Rajotte, which takes a more nuanced approach and is posted below with permission.

Thank you for your correspondence regarding Bill C-61, an Act to amend the Copyright Act.  As you know, this is a very complex and contentious issue that causes widely divergent views.

In this bill, the Minister of Industry, the Honourable Jim Prentice, has worked hard to forge a compromise between fairly compensating musicians, songwriters, artists, photographers, and film makers for their work and ensuring all Canadians may have access to and utilize the newest forms of digital technology.

For your information, Bill C-61 is at the second reading stage in the House of Commons.  Debate at this level is over the principle of the bill rather than a specific examination of every clause contained in the bill.  A clause-by-clause examination of the bill will be done at committee stage, if it passes second reading.  As Chair of the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology, where this bill will most likely be sent after second reading, I want to assure you that it will receive a full, fair and open hearing.

I support Bill C-61 in principle, but I am ready and willing to listen to your views.  If you have specific concerns or suggestions with respect to the wording of this legislation, please submit them to this office or to the Clerk of the committee and I will ensure that the entire committee deliberates on all of the recommendations.

Thank you again for taking the time to share your concerns with me.

Yours truly,

James Rajotte, MP
Chair, Standing Committee on Industry, Science & Technology

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