Archive for October, 2008

CNIB Pressures Canadian Government on WIPO Treaty for Reading Disabled

The World Intellectual Property Organization's Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights meets next week in Geneva where a hot topic may be a proposal from the World Blind Union for the creation of a new WIPO Treaty for Improved Access for Blind, Visually Impaired and other Reading Disabled Persons.  […]

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October 31, 2008 5 comments News

The Globe on Online Fears

The Globe's Ivor Tossel on the Internet issues that keep him up at night including the "copyright meltdown."

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October 31, 2008 1 comment News

McBride on the Future of Music

Nettwerk's Terry McBride argues the future economic value lies in the meta-data (hat tip: FYI Music).

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October 31, 2008 1 comment News

CRTC Releases Broadcast Review Decision

The CRTC has released its much anticipated broadcast review decision.  The Commission:

  • rejects (again) the request from over-the-air broadcasters for a new fee-for-carriage payment (ie. payment for over-the-air signals).
  • establishes a new fund for local programming that will cost cable and satellite subscribers about 50 cents per month.  The new fund sparked two dissenting opinions.
  • concludes that time shifting (in this case carrying multiple versions of the same network) should be compensated and calls for negotiations to establish a price.
  • continues to move toward greater deregulation by dropping regulation for smaller broadcast distribution companies (under 20,000 subscribers), removing "genre protection" in competitive areas (which for the moment are sports and news), and provides greater flexibility in packaging channels.
  • opens the door to new forms of targeted advertising (ie. closer examination of viewing profiles and interests) with a hearing on the matter scheduled for next year.

While this suggests a mixed bag, it ultimately leaves consumers paying more (the new fund and time shifting fees), though not quite as much as some broadcasters were hoping for.  Interestingly, the Internet and new forms of broadcast scarcely merit a mention in the entire decision with those issues slated for review in the new media hearings next February.

Update: A Canadian Press reporter asked for my views on whether today's decision would change broadcasting in Canada by 2011.  My response:


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October 30, 2008 4 comments News

The Fight for Canada’s Digital Future

Last week, I had the pleasure of delivering talks in Vancouver and Edmonton that reflected on the last year and the Canadian battle over copyright reform.  A podcast of the Vancouver talk has been posted online. Update:  A podcast of the Edmonton talk is now also available.

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October 30, 2008 5 comments News