A group of exceptional European IP scholars have published a European Copyright Code, with the goal of promoting transparency and consistency across European copyright law.
Archive for April, 2010
In addition to my Hill Times op-ed this week on the transformation of Canadian Heritage Minister James Moore from iPod minister to iPadlock minister, the paper includes a second article with some predictions for copyright reform. The opening of the article includes a quote from Canadian Heritage Parliamentary Secretary Dean Del Mastro on the reform process:
"It would be naïve of me to say that we could introduce a bill on copyright that would be loved on all sides."
Del Mastro's comment is consistent with the conventional wisdom on copyright reform, namely that it is a contentious issue pitting users against creators that is difficult to reconcile. Yet the conventional wisdom here may be wrong. It is true that a copyright bill is unlikely to be loved by all sides. In fact, a bill loved by any side is probably a bill that does not strike the right balance (that is one of the reasons Moore's shift to strong support for C-61 digital lock rules is so problematic – one group loves it, some tolerate it, many hate it). Far better, is a bill that is acceptable to all sides. That means there will be compromises for all with the goal of crafting a bill that meets the most stakeholder needs and maintains the copyright balance.
Is that possible? I think so. The key elements in such a bill would include:
The Department of Foreign Affairs held a briefing call yesterday on the latest round of Canada – European Union Trade Agreement negotiations held last week in Ottawa (talks are actually continuing this week since many European officials were unable to attend due to volcanic ash inspired flight cancellations). The call was the first I have attended and I think the department should be commended for holding regular briefings that offer a full update on the negotiations. The CETA approach is in marked contrast to ACTA, where there have been practically no briefings after negotiation rounds.
The CETA intellectual property chapter was discussed during the briefing, with officials noting that EU pressure on this particular issue was increasing. The EU is apparently concerned with the lack of movement on the IP chapter, which is largely at a standstill. The EU has demanded wholesale changes to Canada's IP law framework, but negotiators advised that Canada could not respond without guidance from the government. Part of that guidance is expected to come in the form of the next copyright bill (with iPadlock Minister James Moore pushing for C-61 style lock provisions, the bill would be consistent with EU demands on anti-circumvention rules).
The Globe reports that Telus has argued in a submission to the CRTC that satellite, cable, copper, and wireless options will together provide 100 percent broadband coverage in Canada without the need for regulation. Telus rejects calls for an Internet obligation to serve.
The Toronto Sun reports that Pirate Party of Canada has received official party status.