A Week in the Life of the Canadian DMCA: Part Four

The week in the life of the Canadian DMCA continues (day one, day two, day three) with Diane.

Diane, who is four years old, is a huge fan of  the popular TV character Dora the Explorer.  For her birthday, she received four Dora DVDs.  Given Diane’s habit of scratching them, her dad has begun to create backup versions.  That day, Diane brings home her kindergarten class photo, which was taken by a local photographer.  Josee digitizes the photo and sends a copy to Diane’s grandmother.

If Industry Minister Jim Prentice’s Bill C-61 becomes law, all of these copying activities arguably violate the law.

Bill C-61 does not allow users to make backup copies of DVDs.  The act of backing up the DVD is an infringement.  Moreover,  in order to make the backup copy, users must typically circumvent the copy-protection on the DVD, also an act of infringement.

For decades, Canadian copyright law has vested copyright in commissioned photographs – like school photographs – in the person who commissions the photo.  Bill C-61 reverses that practice so that copyright now belongs to the photographer. (repeal of Section 13.2) Assuming the photograph came with an all rights reserved restriction, the act of distributing the digitized photo to Diane’s grandmother now violates the law. (Section 29.21 (1)(e))

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