Canadian Students on the Fight for Fair Copyright

The Canadian Federation of Students have launched a new video calling on students across the country to support the fight for fair copyright.  A French-language version is also available.


  1. strunk&white says:

    As a student of the master, the CFS has learned its creative inaccuracy and use of dramatic oversimplification well.

    The video gives me a warm feeling for the future of education in this country.


  2. I think copyright protection until the death of the creator plus 5 years is adequate. Entrepreneur’s will still make money after this – just not as much. I also think it will allow others to participate and expand the material.

  3. Well color me suprised…
    There’s a french video… Offcourse it was done by students not by media corps…

    PS: I am myself a student and I agree with this video…

    PPS: We must countinue this war aggainst crappy laws!

  4. Laurel L. Russwurm says:

    On the money
    What a great video… I’m bloggin it! (embedding both versions 🙂

    @Robert: I’m inclined to a 5 year term ought to be sufficient in total. In this age of potential lightning fast distribution five years in total ought to do it. I think the original copyright term was something like 7 or 12 years because that was considered long enough to sell a copy to everyone who would buy it.

    Think about it:

    How long does the publisher keep the book in print?

    How long does the distributor keep the feature film on movie screens? Or pressing new DVDs? We are talking weeks or months.

    Really, the first run distribution should be the length of the term. The reason I say five years is that Indie creators don’t have the distribution staff and machinery of the big media corps. The moment it is not worth it to actively promote is when it OUGHT to go into the public domain.

  5. Student Unions
    I’ve forwarded this link to the executives of the student unions of the 3 universities I’ve attended. I think we should all do this to ensure as many student bodies are aware of this as possible. This is the response I received from one…

    “Thank you so much for your email! I actually just returned to from Ottawa where I was attending the Canadian Federation of Students annual general meeting. I was lucky enough to go to a presentation from Michael Geist and learned a lot more about the copyright issue. The federation is launching a campaign (to go along with the video) against this bill and the student union will also be undertaking some campaigning to educate students at the university! I really do appreciate you taking the time to email me on this and if you ever come across anything else concerning post-secondary education and students rights please forward it along to me!”

  6. rebel scum says:

    If only the delegates at that same meeting had paid attention to the rest of the “open access” argument and gotten with the 21st century, putting their meeting minutes & financial documents on-line so their half a million members can participate, too.

    I sincerely hope you’re joking when you say “it was done by students not media corps”. CFS spends mondo bucks hiring pros do produce all of their campaign materials.

  7. Anonymous Coward says:

    Copyright will be rendered obsolete in the near future.

  8. Fair copyright
    I was blown away at this video, very well done and explains the issue well! I just came back from Annual General Meeting of the Canadian Federation of Students where this video was screened for the first time, this is important work! People need to rally around this issue, it will have severe consequences for the future of open access.

  9. Great Tool
    Glad that this video is making the rounds, especially since new Copyright legislation is on it’s way, I’ve seen it all over facebook as well. I think this is a great tool for students to learn more about how copyright legislation affects them as students and citizens, which can be a very complicated and confusing issue for most.

    Also, for those who are involved in your students’ union or attended last week’s CFS general meeting, listen closely and see if you can tell who did the voice over for the French version!

  10. WOW. The Canadian Federation of Students does great work and this video is totally amazing!

  11. and it’s official, a new copyright bill to be tabled on thursday and it is to contain many DMCA-style provision locks. this video should serve as a rallying call for everybody in the academic sector to stand up and protect our freedom to learn, share, create and (re)create freely.

  12. If this simplistic view is the best “students” can come up with, well, I worry for our future.

  13. @DaMan
    “If this simplistic view is the best “students” can come up with, well, I worry for our future.”

    It’s short, simple and to the point. It has just enough information to make the watcher want to learn more. The government has been very “secret squirrel” about this round of talks and information has to get out. I think that is the point.

    At least they’re trying to do something ….

  14. @mathieu
    “and it’s official, a new copyright bill to be tabled on thursday”

    Has this been announced somewhere?

  15. Worry more if DCMA-like reforms pass
    @DaMan sorry, some people need things explained simply for it to be effective. This is an awesome video and I think it will go along way to mobilize students and others to demand fair copyright! My congrats go out to the students who produced this.

  16. rip it good..... says:

    great video. Harper wants to criminalize the majority of Canadians for the benefit of his financiers.. this is a desperate attempt by the ‘intellectual property’ owners to sucker us one more time. but they missed the boat. digital blew their heads off, but they’re still alive. they want to die fighting. we all know how to kill them- financial deprivation.

  17. rip it good..... says:

    boycott all commercial media, everything, books, dvds, cds, even rentals- everything. it’s easy. view the media pigopolies as what they are- your enemy! and vote Harper out.

  18. Well done CFS!

  19. @IamME
    “Has this been announced somewhere?”

    Study of new copyright bill might extend into BBQ season

    Study of copyright bill might extend into BBQ season

  20. joel cairo says:

    They are extending study because they are scared of angry voters. Harper knows this issue can cost him is beloved job. He spent over 1 billion dollars on full body scanners after underwear buddy. can you believe it? mossad must be happy with him.

  21. RE: stunk@whitless
    “As a student of the master, the CFS has learned its creative inaccuracy and use of dramatic oversimplification well.

    The video gives me a warm feeling for the future of education in this country.


    Ah I see. So you would prefer to teach them the skills of corporate schemes and tricks, and how to generally exploit general, harmless consumers, while at the same time enforcing that corporations and giant conglomerates deserve by design draconian rights, especially in relation to copyright, patents, and trademarks (or as your side likes to simplify, “intellectual property rights”)?

    Your comment is an oversimplification, and it just makes warmer the feeling I get about single-minded greedy corporate-affiliates like yourself.

  22. Timing
    It is easy to see why the Government is trying to get the Copyright Reform Bill into the House of Commons and into committee for review during the summer.
    It is the time when the majority of students are away from the educational institutions.
    It is a window of opportunity for them to avoid organized student revolt and come to agreements with the opposition parties to pass the Bill when parliament resumes with minimal attention.
    Use the internet, communicate, write letters, don’t let them get away with it. Be heard, not herded.

  23. @Marcus
    Does not work for all students… Some, like me, are at school even during the summer(but even it this was not the case… I can still read websites…

  24. James Gannon says:

    Canadian author John Degen has written an excellent critique to this video, pointing out major inaccuracies:

  25. students are going to decide what’s best?
    clearly a juvenile level of understanding of copyrights and why they are needed

  26. students are going to decide what’s best?
    You forgot your sarcasm tags…. At least I hope so.

  27. Corporate Poison
    Where there is a SkunkStripe, James, Castle, or Barry tend to follow. Always the same. I’m sure others have noticed this as well.

    James, get your face out of your mentors *ss and admit the student video is well done. Also, didn’t I tell you to use your own blog for your corporate poison? As punishment, go clean your room (again).

  28. @jimmy
    “clearly a juvenile level of understanding of copyrights and why they are needed”

    Like oldguy, I truly hope you were being sarcastic.

    Otherwise, you’re worse…you’re being naive and you’re the one with the “juvenile level of understanding” of what’s really at stake for students and education as a whole. Have you ever gone to university?

    I think most people would agree copyright is needed, but the idea of DRM and some of the ridiculous rules they’re talking about imposing on students and educational institutions are truly insane and go beyond draconian. One that jumps to mind is that a student must “destroy” all course work which used copyrighted material within 3 days of finishing a course, though I think they’ve softened the time-frame since originally proposing it. Have you ever spent weeks or months, or longer in doctoral/post-doctoral programs, doing a research paper? It becomes part of you, very few will willingly destroy it…especially at higher levels where such papers become reference material for later use.

    As long as student work and academic research is relatively original and sources are cited properly, THAT WORK BELONGS TO THE STUDENT!!!! What are researchers going to do, pull ideas out of their respective asses? You need to READ text books to LEARN and as long as they’re cited what do they care. As far as I know, they’ve not yet perfected the “learning by osmosis” technique. If you take a hard line on copyright, students would never legally be able to use anything without requesting permission because EVERYTHING has intellectual copyright implications. To take it a step further, which some would like to do, can you imagine if we had to pay royally fees to use a source as a reference…even AFTER buying the book? Can you imagine the negative impact that would have on research…on education? “Well, I’m only on student loans, so I can only afford to have 2 sources in this paper”…c’mon!!! They’d better start giving DRM e-text-books away then because no-one will buy them…especially at the graduate levels and higher. I can tell you, that if I had bought electronic copies of some of the text books I had in certain masters courses, some well over $200, I’d be ROYALLY PISSED OFF if they suddenly expired and I couldn’t use them anymore. Give me a paper copy over a DRM copy any day…and you know what, paper never expires AND I loan it to friends, give it away or even resell it if I so choose.

    I apologize for my crude language, but this is a matter very close to me. The idea that a student would have to pay or even request permission to use copyrighted material in a research paper and then have to destroy their research is ridiculous, but this is how some would have it. Would publishing firms hire a bunch of people to reply to the hundreds of thousands of requests they would receive yearly, so students and researchers could expect a timely reply? Placing DRM on education is counter-intuitive and just plain money-grubbing to try to stop second-hand book sales. My wife, who came from a very low income welfare family, could not have afforded to go through engineering if it wasn’t for hand-me-down, borrowed and second-hand books. Even then she amassed over $40000 in student loans that won’t be paid off until she’s in her 40’s. Such restrictions will make university more expensive and even less accessible to those in lower income brackets. Worst of all, it will negatively affect the quality of education as many resources become inaccessible / unusable by students.

    When it comes to DRM and other copyright restrictions in education, it’s all about greed and taking advantage of those who are most vulnerable…the students because they’re the ones who ultimately pay.

  29. joel cairo says:

    everyone watched obama win an election- mobilizing the student vote, social media, instant messaging with flash mobs, bloggers etc. Well, Harper will see the same thing in reverse- removing him form office. some people have to learn the hard way

  30. Phil Robinson says:

    Excellent video
    This is an excellent video – the Canadian Federation of Students have been involved in the last two copyright fights and it looks like their members are stepping it up for round three.

  31. Jimmy
    Jimmy is what you call a poison pill. He likely works for the government or special intrest groups. His job is to post a ton of stuff to distrupt the sites flow of correct information. Just about everything Jimmy had to say was a lie.

  32. @Jayson
    Now that I find funny. If you juxtapose Jimmy’s single comment against the intervening comments it generated, it is both true and funny at the same time. Good one!!

  33. Interesting use of samples in the video’s soundtrack. How many can you pick out?

    I hear:
    Beastie Boys “Fight For Your Right”
    John Cougar Mellancamp “Jack & Diane”
    Avril Lavigne “Girlfriend”

  34. Eo Nomine says:

    Video produced by professional American animator?
    While watching the video this weekend, I noticed this at the end of the CFS’s posting on YouTube:

    “Video credit: Ryan Junell,

    Figuring that Ryan Junell might be a design student, I popped onto his website to see his portfolio… and quickly discovered that Ryan is a professional animator and directors whose clients include the Cartoon Network, Sega and Electronic Arts. And he’s BASED IN SAN FRANCISCO.

    So, the Canadian Federation of Students hired a professional Amercian animator to advocate on fair copyright for Canadian students? The irony is almost overwhelming…

  35. Joy of the Internet – “Video produced by professional American animator?”
    This is the wonderful thing about the Internet. You next door neighbour, or some guy in San Fran, it’s all the same. Changes business forever…you never have to meet in person. Now only if the the entertainment dinosaurs would realise that Internet changes business.

  36. /b/rother says:

    acta is coming anons
    well. as of now, everything we do is illegal. it’s just a matter of how illegal and what they do to you if and when you are caught.

    copyright reforms, internet filters – censorship. i won’t be surprised if they make it compulsory de-anon yourself and give your real name and ID if you want to make a comment anywhere now.

  37. RE: acta is coming anons
    “Joe Blow” is a real name…just not my real name, but they don’t know that. 🙂 Good luck tracking someone down if they have a clue and really want to remain anonymous. 🙂

  38. Ryan Junell says:

    RE: Video produced by professional American animator?
    hi yes I’m an american animator married to a canadian. I spent most of last summer in ottawa. I’ve worked extensively with creative commons since their beginning, in fact I designed their logo. that’s how the CFS found me.

    I’m very familiar with the fight for fair copyright. I worked at the student union at the university of texas for two years (94-96) then interned as a student in washington d.c. for then-governor George Bush’s office. I represented the office when the EFF (Electronic Frontier Foundation) visited capitol hill to describe the impacts of the U.S. DMCA on technology and society.

    I feel its quite appropriate to work on behalf of the CFS on this issue. I believe copyright is an AMAZING and INTERNATIONAL issue with many valid arguments on both sides. We addressed the importance of sensible copyright in the first 30 seconds of the video.

    Does that make sense, Eo Nomine?

  39. J Lesser says:

    RE: Video produced by professional American animator?
    In kind, I made the soundtrack for the video. I’ve been a ‘semi-professional’ musician for a number of years (alternating betwixt poverty and sapdom – being a drone at someone else’s company) and was never a student (sadly). I am also an American – just to get that out in the open.

  40. illustrator is canadian though
    and a former ottawa u student who just happens to be living in the usa at the mo 🙂

  41. Ken McMullan says:

    Retired bus driver
    When I copied Movies from a VCR,the Movie copy weren’t great but now the technology is better so the government is giving my individual rights away. This is crap about the locks on movies and games. Their is no solid proof that jobs will be lost. Again government is not telling the truth.
    It’s a sell out to big business.