An exception that surprisingly is not included in Bill C-61's anti-circumvention provisions is an exception to protect minors. How does this arise in the context of copyright? One obvious example are parents who wish to stop their children from watching certain scenes in a movie. There are services such as ClearPlay that purport to edit out sex, violence, and profanity from regular DVD movies. Regardless of one's view of such practices, surely it ought to be the right of a parent who has purchased the DVD edit a scene for their family's personal viewing purposes. Yet under Bill C-61, a parent who wants to shield their children from such content risks violating the law in order to do so.
Creating an explicit exception for the protection of minors is fairly common in other countries. Taiwan's anti-circumvention provisions include a blanket exception to protect minors (Article 80ter), while Singapore's Copyright Act features an exception to the anti-circumvention provision where the circumvention is "to prevent access by minors to any material on the Internet." There may well be other instances where a parent or school wishes to protect minors but faces the prospect of violating the law by circumventing a digital lock. Canadians should not be placed in that position – the law needs an amendment to address this issue.