PMO Issues The Order: Canadian DMCA Bill Within Six Weeks

Months of public debate over the future of Canadian copyright law were quietly decided earlier this week, when sources say the Prime Minister's Office reached a verdict over the direction of the next copyright bill.  The PMO was forced to make the call after Canadian Heritage Minister James Moore and Industry Minister Tony Clement were unable to reach consensus on the broad framework of a new bill.  As I reported last week, Moore has argued for a virtual repeat of Bill C-61, with strong digital locks provisions similar to those found in the U.S. Digital Millennium Copyright Act and a rejection of a flexible fair dealing approach. Consistent with earlier comments on the need for a forward-looking, flexible approach, Clement argued for changes from C-61.

With mounting pressure from the U.S. – there have been repeated meetings with senior U.S. officials in recent weeks – the PMO sided squarely with Moore's vision of a U.S.-style copyright law.  The detailed provisions will be negotiated over the coming weeks by the respective departments, but they now have their marching orders of completing a bill that will satisfy the U.S. that comes complete with tough anti-circumvention rules and no flexible fair dealing provision. 

The bill is not expected until June, but it will have dramatic repercussions once introduced.  First, the bill represents a stunning reversal from the government's seeming shift away from C-61 and its commitment to a bill based on the national copyright consultation.  Instead, the consultation appears to have been little more than theatre, with the PMO and Moore choosing to dismiss public opinion. Second, after adopting distinctly pro-consumer positions on other issues, Moore has abandoned that approach with support for what may become the most anti-consumer copyright bill in Canadian history.  Third, the bill will immediately impact the Canadian position at the ACTA and CETA negotiations, where the bill's provisions on anti-circumvention and ISP liability will effectively become the Canadian delegation position.

For those wondering what can be done, my only answer is to speak out now. Write a paper letter to your Member of Parliament and send copies to the Prime Minister, Moore, Clement and Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff.  No stamp is required – be sure to include your home address and send it to the House of Commons, Ottawa, ON, K1A 0A6.  Once that is done, join the Facebook group and the Facebook page and be sure to ask others do the same. You may spoken out before, but your voice is needed yet again.


  1. Dr. Strangelove says:

    Pen at the Ready
    I’ll be writing letters today and asking my students to do the same!

    BTW, In the book Watching YouTube I briefly discuss the role of the DMCA as a cultural weapon.

    Dr. Strangelove
    University of Ottawa
    Author of Watching YouTube: Extraordinary Videos by Ordinary People (University of Toronto Press, 2010)

  2. theatre! it’s all theatre!
    > Write a paper letter to your Member of Parliament and send copies to
    > the Prime Minister, Moore, Clement and Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff.

    Why? To kill a few more trees?

    It’s all theatre. The consultations were theatre and the entire concept of the government being for the people is theatre.

    It’s soooo depressing.

  3. Betrayed
    My Bloc QC MP, Richard Nadeau, ignored my last Email to him. On his website he says he only reads french Emails. Not in the mood to translate another and be ignored again. He was all for C-61 or the person he forwarded it to was.

    Writing him is a waste of time.

    What is FB going to do, besides raping any info I put on it?

    I give up. If the kids DL something, or jailbreak their phone, Harper can come take the keys to my house and Moore can take my car. F it. It’s what these sons of B’s want.

    I feel… betrayed. I won’t be bothering anymore with it. They lied and stabbed us in the back enough.

  4. I’ve already posted this to my facebook page and will be re-tweeting it as well.
    Are we really surprised that Harper simply dismissed public opinion? When has he ever listened to his electorate?
    I’ll also be writing letters about this and urging others to do the same…

  5. Any bill has to be voted for right? How’s the opposition going to react?

    I’m not holding out any hope towards right to my conservative MP. All politicians fear the party whip, so my hopes are going to rest with your MPs in other ridings. Silly “First past the post” system. Why vote for an individual when they exhibit to individualism.

  6. Write another letter?
    Writing another letter, as we all did during the “consultation”, clearly does nothing.

    It’s time for more concrete action.

  7. I give up too, this is complete garbage.
    We can’t win with the CRTC, we can’t win with these copyright bills either.

    It’s all for show and you know it Dr.

    Why are we wasting time writing letters when they’re ignored?
    Just like the CRTC submissions, they recieve them, but unless you work for Bell, Rogers or some other big media conglom your opinion is invalid in the 51st state, Canada.

    It’s time for pitchforks & torches, asking politely for what we want falls on deaf ears as long as our government is entirely corrupt and not working for the people!

  8. I had feared this would happen, but held out a small hope that it would not.

    Damn… just… damn!

    I grieve. Deeply.

    I’ll write another letter… hopefully it be read, but I just don’t know if I can hope for anything anymore.

    Where can I find a list of addresses to send to?

  9. Gord Wait says:

    This is the moment.
    If we get enough names, they will listen. This is a main thrust in the ACTA war against freedom of expression. If we fold now, then ACTA “takes” Canada, and the rest of the world folds like a cheap tent. If the US’s largest trading partner stands up to these bullies, then the rest of the world might sit up and take notice.

    The challenge is to explain to people how and why this is bad. Michael Geist has been writing some great articles to this end.

    Don’t give up, show your local politicians that we don’t want corporations in charge of the internet, without any legal protection for us citizens.

  10. How to kill the bill
    If we want this bill to die it’s time to elect a new government. Then when they try to bring in a DMCA we have another election. I’d rather have an election every year then a DMCA in Canada! Let’s vote for the pirate party!

  11. freshwatermermaid says:

    us giving up is what they want
    I’m disappointed, frustrated, annoyed and very very busy. But none of those things will keep me from standing up to these nonsense bullies. I refuse to believe our efforts were in vain because they wanted to pass the bill and we stopped them. Remember? It was going to go through and we killed it.

    Lots of energy has been spent on this cause and of course it’s awful for our own government to outright ignore public consultation. We stopped them once and we can do it again. I for one won’t be grinning while this bill is run roughshod over me. I hate that we did all this work and they don’t care. I hate it enough to give lots of energy to stopping it happening.

    Gilles Duceppe reads English mail, I know that because he replied to my English letter to him. All the party leaders accept our comments, as well as our local MPs. Know who else reads English? The CBC, the Globe and Mail, The Walrus, Maclean’s and any number of publications with an interest in copyright and a strong Canadian consensus.

    The proposed bill is a disaster. Lets make it their disaster. Not ours.

  12. sent a letter
    sent a nice bitch letter to my mp already…..wooo

  13. What Canada Deserves
    A minority government able to make such offensive changes and to behave like bullies over and over. They years of smug political apathy by Canadians has produced this mess, and the sooner we realize that we’re getting the government we deserve for being so careless, the sooner we’ll get back to good government. Canadians as a whole have learned to be pathetic and useless, and that is fixable with engagement but we are getting what we deserve.

  14. Hugh McGuire says:

    Do we know what’s going to be in the bill yet?

    Do we have any details?

    What is the process & next steps?

    Given this is a minority government, how much does shaking trees with MPs from other parties do?

  15. Trevor, as great as that sounds… the Conservatives are wanting to bring this into law in only 6 weeks. There isn’t going to be an election before that time.

    Once in place, it is not realistic to expect that it will be removed by a future government. The only remotely plausible way to stop this is to not let it come into law in the first place. It must die on the table.

  16. Letters have been sent
    only to be ignored, I am sure. I just can’t get over how Harper & his conservatives continually act with impunity. i am not surprised that they completely ignored their own consultation process just a bit dumbfounded.

  17. VancouverDave says:

    Remember how this was stopped last time?
    The last attempt at this was stopped only when Jim Prentice felt personally threatened by a group confronting him at a riding event.

    Personal fear is the only thing that will stop a politician from the pursuit of power.

  18. Robert Noxe says:

    Don’t hold much hope
    Don’t expect Iggy to stand up to Harper, they’ll vote right along with the CONS, I can see the NDP opposing and perhaps the BQ, but that’s about it.

  19. Disgusted
    6 weeks. This is coming out nowhere, being rushed like hell. Ye gods we are apparently living in a dictatorship. Who woulda thought. What is Harper thinking? with all the other shit going on lately, the moron is definately not going to be re-elected – EVER!

    Why does this absolute moron seem so obsessed with our international image instead of our domestic problems and desires? We want a leader of Canada – not a worldwide figurehead.

  20. Michael Leamy says:

    There is an option that can count.
    I’ll keep this brief. The Pirate Party of Canada has as one of it’s primary goals this very topic. If you did not understand why the Pirate Party was important in your life before, you should now.

  21. Carrie Liddy says:

    Very sad that Harper ignores the voters. Going to be an interesting year in the courts. I wonder how many nine year olds will be arrested fir breaking US laws Harper brought to Canada. Next step is the polling booth.

  22. Scott Philip says:

    I know who I’m NOT voting for
    Anyone who supports this bill, read this: copyright is a voting issue for young people.
    After a public consultation, and 12 years of DMCA problems south of the border, I can only conclude that our representatives who are pushing this legislation are absolutely mad.

  23. Concerned
    It is sure that if the bill is in anyway similar to C-61, we have to act and contact our parliament representative. However, I’m looking and can’t find anything I can cite for my concerns as, for now, it is only information passed down from a “source”. Am I missing the link informing us of the actual content and identification for that bill?

  24. New Criminals
    Well, apparently the PMO is about to criminalize a whole swathe of Canadians, and hand over control of the media/propaganda market over to the Americans, in one fell swoop. This is a tough choice, because I really do favour an open market, and Harper’s gang are supposed to represent this, but if this goes through as anticipated, it will be utterly destructive to the Canadian fabric. Personally, I have no intention of toeing the line that Harper is being instructed to draw, and the first order of business will be to replace him and his.

  25. timing
    If i wanted to pass a bill with the least amount of noise from students and others in that demographic i would table it precisely at this time of year.

  26. Paul Turnbull says:

    It does work
    For all of those giving up because you think we can’t make a different, I would note that in the absence of people speaking out we’d already have a bill and the secret provisions of ACTA would have passed in WIPO years ago. In fact the whole reason for the secrecy surrounding ACTA was to try and avoid public outcry. We may not change their minds but we can make them back down due to their innate fear of bad press.

    Write, call, tell your friends and recognize that they will likely keep trying to pass nightmares like this, we just have to outlast them. 🙂

  27. No news here, unfortunately
    “Months of public debate over the future of Canadian copyright law were quietly decided earlier this week, when sources say the Prime Minister’s Office reached a verdict over the direction of the next copyright bill.”

    Sorry, this was decided much earlier. Remember a few months ago when the minister, during question period, was asked about ACTA overriding our copyright laws and his response that ACTA would work within the framework?

    Well, there you have it.

    Disgusted from the hypocrisy and charades up there.

  28. chortick says:

    Effective communication with elected officials

    Five minutes invested in this TED talk will reveal how to write effective letters to elected officials. It will also reveal why other modalities are less effective.

  29. Does anyone have a template?
    I’d like to send in a letter to my MP, and was wondering if anyone can make available one they have written to use as a template or starting point? Thanks.

  30. Yet another reason
    to vote none of the above on the ballot (as if I didn’t have sufficient reason already).

    Mark. It is 6 weeks until introduction of the bill… it’ll take months to get it through committee, etc. We do have time. You are correct that the chances that it’ll be removed by a future government are slim (I can still remember Cretien promising to scrap the GST). The timing is interesting, however. I seem to remember talk of the opposition defeating the government this fall; so the chances are that introducing the bill at that time would do something to shut up the USTR while in all likelihood guaranteeing that it would die on the order paper when the government falls… or serve as a poison pill if the LPC forms a minority backed by the NDP and BQ.

    @Carl: Well put. Anyone remember John Nunziata? Ejected from the LPC caucus for the crime of voting against the party in a whipped vote (and the LPC was a majority government at the time, his vote against did nothing but embarrass the PM). In Canada, the theory is we have representative democracy. Yeah, right. The MP doesn’t represent the wishes of his/her constituency, they represent the wishes of the party, except in the few cases where the party allows a free vote. In a minority government it is even worse.

  31. Sean Carney says:

    For those dealing with the Bloc
    I read in Give Up’s comment that his Bloc MP won’t read English correspondence. All controversial language issues aside, I recommend the use of an online translation service to email said MPs. While it may not be perfect French, it is still French and better than nothing.

    Google Translate:|fr|

  32. says:

    The only the to do:
    The only thing to do is boycott: stop the machine by dismantling. Take all our cds and dvds and destroy them. Stop going to the movies. By means of solidarity and constraint we will stand up for what we believe in and stop being a puppet society.

  33. Clear Writerz says:

    Thanks chortick!
    Thank you for that link… it think well written letter would do us good if we’re going to mount a six week letter writing campaign.

  34. Enough…
    I hate to admit it, when I was young I was an idealogue. I believed I could change the world if I worked with my elected officials. I felt I could make a difference if I spoke my mind.

    Sadly our parent’s generation are so entrenched and so backwards and the current regime is so ignorant and so arrogant it doesn’t seem to matter any more. It’s a sad state of affairs but democracy is dead. If the 15 year old me saw the 35 year old me he would cry.

  35. chupacabra says:

    The industry is a dying dinosaur, trying to claw its way out of the coffin.
    They are trying so hard to kill off the digital revolution.
    You all fret, don’t fret, people like me will always find a way to circumvent the DRM and we will never pay for the trash they are trying to peddle.
    Revolt… download, share with your friends, then soon enough their profit margins will shrink and dwindle and they will not be able to afford these lobbyists and lawyers.
    As per the artists, they will adapt and survive, some will not but there are always casualties in a revolution.

  36. idea for a letter says:

    Please can you give me a sample of what a letter should like to my MP

  37. Mark A. McCutcheon says:

    template letter to send to Canadian government, against copyright “reform”
    Jon (and everyone):

    Feel free to copy, customize, and snail-mail this template letter:

    Feedback on making it more effective (as per Chortick’s useful advice) is also most welcome.

  38. I’ll save my ink for the ballot box, and once the bill has been introduced.

  39. Jason Boyko says:

    I can’t believe it
    Why can’t the opposition topple this worthless sack of hell?

  40. If……
    It seems a bit of a double edged sword for the *AA’s, because I can’t see how you can have “anti-circumvention” and “ISP Liability” at THE SAME TIME and not get caught in your own noose.
    ISP Liability assumes that the ISP has to actually look at the data that is flowing across their network (inspecting each packet for copyrighted material). But I were to encrypt my traffic (which is not terribly difficult), then it would be illegal for the ISP to look at my traffic without running afoul of the anti-circumvention portion of a bill.
    If this bill comes to pass you will see a rise in encrypted internet traffic (the way it should already be!), and the *AA’s will loose their great prize of catching off the villains without themselves being caught.

  41. Matthew Hiscock says:

    Don’t mourn, organize!
    To Give Up and Brian and all the gloomy gusses: Don’t mourn, organize!

    If you don’t want to write a letter, talk to people. Find the people where you are who care about the same thing and do something you consider more relevant. Chain yourself to your local supreme court or something.

  42. Michael Carter says:

    False positives.
    Personally I have a solution to all this. I just don’t have to buy! If big businesses, and those miss-guided creators want to create laws to make more money because their product and content suck… really I just don’t have to make any purchases. Rather than purchasing avatar I can go for a walk, hike, or bike ride instead. Or rather than having Windows 7/Microsoft Office I can go with Fedora Linux/OpenOffice. (suites my needs better anyways)

    The only thing that worries me about these laws is the false positives or money grabbers who try to use the law as their primary source of income rather than their products. I’ve already been accused of “illegal” activity because of flawed methods for gathering statistics. I’d hate to see that happen here on a large scale.

  43. Steven Fisher says:

    Jason Boyko asked why the opposition can’t topple the government.

    The answer is that of course they can. They’re just not going to. Because whatever they say, they actually believe in the bill, too.

  44. WTF????
    This is so ridiculous! The goverment is bringing back a bill that they know damn well that everyone hates, and fought against it for about two years. They just don’t give a s*** what we think, and won’t give up until they have thier way.

    This new DMCA bill will revok our rights and, we will all classifiled as criminals (again).

    I just as sick of these backward copyright laws as much as much as everyone else, and I feel that we as canadians must resort to very drastic measures to make sure this DMCA will be gone forever.

    I know I’m just one person, and we all know that one person alone can’t make much of a diffrence. However I feel that we can still fight this like we did the last couple of times.

    We won’t rest until this gone for good!

  45. My goodness people, you take your free music very seriously, don’t you? Too bad you couldn’t funnel all of this conviction into something productive. I suppose the good news is that you’ll continue to get some sweet free music and movies

  46. Viola Adams says:

    Tired old lady
    First I bought 78″s, then 45″s, then Lp’s (1200 which I still have), then 8 tracks, then cassettes, then cd’s, now it’s digital music. The government is going to tell me that I can’t transfer any of the music to another medium. Have you tried to purchased a record player or a portable cassette player lately? The music industry keeps changing the method for us to listen to music so we continully have to purchased new electronic items to do so, and repeat purchasing the songs that we like. How many times do the artists, the government, and the electronic industry expect me to purchase music so I can ejoy it? When am I going to be allowed to enjoy music where and when I please? I have given up and I will not purchase any further cd’s, electronic, or any other music medium until I am allowed to enjoy it.

  47. Les Benson says:

    Basic letter writing guide: Four C’s: Clear, Correct, Concise, and Convincing.

    One page maximum and preferably hand-written. Don’t use a form letter or email. No Stamp. Address to:
    Member’s or Minister’s name
    House of Commons
    Ottawa ON, K1A 0A6

    Add your full name, titles etc, address, email and phone number at bottom.

    I’d send one copy to the Minister and a copy to my MP–and perhaps to other party leaders.

    Read several of the available form letters linked here (and/or Google “Letters to MP Canada”). Make a list of topics/points you support. Then, the next day, write your own letter–based on the topics and points you have extracted from the form letters–DON’T RE-READ THEM. Be polite. Put letter in a good grammar and spell checker, re-read it the following day. Get your spouse’s or a friend’s comments. Correct and mail.

  48. maegnoom says:

    Not surprised at all.

    Keep speaking out & doing whatever else you can to stand against this. Personally I’ll just totally ignore whatever crud they pass “in my best interest”.

  49. musician and artist.
    hey all you THIEVES! If you don’t like the movie/music etc. DONT WATCH IT and for gods sake DONT STEAL IT EITHER!

    You all sit here and complain about how new movies and music are ‘trash’ and yet YOU STILL DOWNLOAD AND WATCH THEM!

    As an artist and musician I am the one who should decide where my work goes and who sees it for free — NOT YOU!

    I love my fans to share my work with their friends — but FRIENDS is the key here! Not some 12 year old across the country you have never spoken to.

    Do you realize how many great musicians in this country — INDEPENDANT artists I’m talking about – ones who have no major record label — are STARVING because we now have a culture in Canada where people under 16 HAVE NEVER PAID FOR A SINGLE PIECE OF MUSIC IN THERE LIFE!!!

    Doesn’t this fact shock you! Its ok to spend $5 on a coffee, but $1 for a song is too much. Its pathetic how little you people care for OUR ARTISTS!

    If you all didn’t feel the need to upload the newest movie to Isohunt or where ever THEN THIS NEVER WOULD HAVE HAPPENED!

    If you all copied only for you own use, and ONLY shared with your friends THIS NEVER WOULD HAVE HAPPENED!

    You only have your glutinous selves to blame for these new laws!

    The reason you can’t win this is because THE ARTISTS DESERVE TO BE PAID FOR THEIR WORK!!

    It amazes me how you people stand up against this, but when MUCH more important issues like our HEALTHCARE are affected you all shrug your shoulders in complacence.

    There are MANY more vital issues you should be confronting our Government over. The fact that you can’t TAKE other people’s work for free anymore isn’t one of them.

  50. Mark A. McCutcheon says:

    letter writing guide
    Thanks Les. Those are excellent tips and I’ll pare down my template accordingly.

  51. Mr Savage says:

    So how is this democracy? When we, as a country vote these people in to represent us, and then they ignore us, what course of action do/can we take? Obviously they are NOT interested in what the people who put them there, opinions are, but yet, their own wallets and agendas. A PM that listens to a foreign countries policies before our own, what are we to do with that? What can be done? Sure Ill write my MP but, seriously, this PM has suspended parliament already, to the protest of the whole country, and now is looking to implement another countries agenda here in ours. Sounds like the Iraq war on a different front thats just less violent if you ask me…

  52. Laughin’ at he man…
    This law is tantamount to an attempted bailout for the recording industry. Problem is, the entire industry has been circling the drain for years. If they want to offer consumers garbage as product, double-dip on profits via format changes and pay artists a pittance – they deserve to fail. That’s capitalism.
    As for this law, it will have the opposite effect of the one intended. Thanks for the advance notice. It gives forward thinking individuals time to find an even better way to dodge the rules. Once again, the law is an ass and the lawmakers are assholes.

  53. Your voice DOES make a difference
    speaking from someone on the inside your letters DO make a difference.

    But you need to include your Name and Address and you should send them to the minister, the Prime Minister, Michael Ignatieff (Liberal), Jack Layton (NDP) and your MP.

    Doesn’t have to be long, better if its not a template letter. Just put the bill number and put that you don’t support it.

    If you think you’ve done enough on this, trust me, you haven’t. There are usually 20 to 50 times more letters concerning the environment or social issues (abortion, gay marriage). Even the protesters for the recognition of the Tamil Tigers will shut down the roads in front of parliament.

    The only thing you can do wrong here, is give up. Because if you don’t voice your opinion in a Democracy, then you always lose.

  54. Government Ass kissing again
    Well for the artist and musicians, as you are so professional anyway, some people sample music and theatre this way so they don’t get ripped off in paying hundreds of dollars for some crap that shouldn’t have made it on radio or television anyway. SOME PEOPLE also will pay the price for a good piece of work if it is worthy after sampling. Also there are lots of ways the government are forking it to people to pay the so called artists via blank media and extra taxes on all media type electronics. Only another way for the Canadian Government to kiss more ass of the American side.

  55. Re: Jim
    People will download regardless of the law that’s in place, there’s ample amount of research available on this. Do you want more of the same: Over a Decade of eating kraft dinner because you can not deter the use of the P2P networks and filesharing globally, or do you want to get paid for the act of filesharing? That’s the question that creators need to start thinking about. It’s your pay cheque, Kraft Dinner vs Steak. You decide.

  56. Anonymous Coward says:


    They deserve to try and be paid. If you cannot make any money because all these amateurs are releasing content for free then your product might need some work.

  57. says:

    “As an artist and musician I am the one who should decide where my work goes and who sees it for free — NOT YOU!”

    Realise that without the society that we built together, your songs would be unheard. Perhaps this is the end that you crave in your self-appropriated wisdom: 1984. Count yourself lucky that we are still enamoured with your plastic beads, and that we still tolerate your bloated popcorn and shameful movie screen advertisements.

    To all those archivists, know that our quest for (collecting) knowledge (media) is a natural process within our very human nature. Be present and remember that history will repeat itself. Know that all good things must come to an end– as surely as there is a peak to every mountain. Resolve yourself to accept what is coming so that in taking a step back your sight will enable greater vision to see those elements that are coming to shape adversity in our lives.

  58. Suckered
    Why did I bother submitting my detailed opinion to the copyright consultation if it was just going to be ignored?

  59. Mr Savage says:

    Mr McCutcheon, Ive assembled a few links with your template letter on my website to further expand awareness and hopefully get a few more emails into the offices of those involved. Just wanted to let you know.

    I post the url as a courtesy and to inform. Nothing more. *blogs*

  60. @jim
    You’re a fool if you think this will help artists! Creating digital restrictions on digital files because some people download illegally is like banning all automobiles because some people use them during bank robberies. The entertainment industry is trying to control the It/computer industry so it can protect itself. Enough!! Bad enough I have to pay a levy to the artists whenever I backup files to CDROM….Oh ya, I forgot, some people MIGHT use them to copy music. Why don’t you go levy hearing aids while you’re at it.
    It’s not fair that some are stealing from you. agreed. But that doesn’t mean we have to change the rest of the world to make it right. Get your head out of your own little world and think of the impact this may have outside of music.

  61. Sandy Crawley says:

    I’m with Jim
    Most of the comment here is anti-creator. The concept of copyright exists to protect the value of content. Legislation to protect intellectual property is not “anti-consumer” unless you believe there should be no protection. No one is forcing you to buy any particular content. There are plenty of people who believe in giving content for free. Help yourselves.The presumption that you should have access to all and any content at no cost is specious and immature. No wonder most of you keep your identities hidden.

  62. Sandy Crawley says:

    Public consultation
    The problem here is that the special interest group that favours a “pro-consumer” approach to copyright didn’t come out on top. So you conclude that a public consultation is a sham when a given decision doesn’t go the way you suggested? Check your cognition people.

  63. Anonymous Coward says:

    The concept of copyright is to progress the useful arts and sciences for a limited time. Change happens. Hey, remember when copyright only lasted 56 years and it had to be registered? Those were some good times, back in the 1970s.

  64. Sandy…
    Allow me to explain my feelings on this bill and why I think you’re quite wrong about all of us being “anti-creator.” Firstly I am against any law that exists to hinder my use of any intellectual property. Laws like bill C-61 and this upcoming bill seek to do this by making it illegal to circumvent DRM measures. You seem to think this is wrong, but for me it is important to be able to enjoy my media. At a very basic level it implies that me having ‘autoplay’ turned off on my computer is illegal because it allows me to avoid an audio cd autostarting a proprietary player for the album, or installing a rootkit as Sony did a few years ago. This also applies to DVDs & BluRays which I would be unable to easily play on Linux without breaking this law. Is this anti-creator? No, my actions aren’t, but the actual law will be because I will avoid purchasing any media featuring such DRM.

    So you’re essentially saying that one special interest group is more important than another? Well I, and many of us, disagree with this. The consultation was supposed to be our chance to voice an opinion that would influnce copyright reform and instead the Cons. have pretty much reverted back to Bill C-61 with no regard to differing opinions. Somewhere there is a common ground, and as long as the Conservatives side with corporation and big media companies then that common ground will never be found.

    At it’s very core the complaints against DMCA & ACTA style copyright enforcement is that it is predicated on the assumption that any of us who legally purchase media are doing so for illegal purposes and that is extremely wrong, and that we can’t be trusted with our computers, or to use the internet, or to enjoy any media we purchase. If anything your support of this bill is hurting the creators far more than our opposition to it.

    So, do us a favour and check your cognition. At the end of the day there is no room for people like you who want to side with “artists” or more factually the large corporations that represent them and also no room for the imagined throngs of evil pirates seeking to subvert creative culture that you imagine us all to be.

    If anything *we* are the common ground between artists and thieves. We understand both sides of this issue, none of us are calling for the immediate removal of royalties and payments to artists but neither are we demanding that the Canadian people suffer for the sake of a musician.

  65. Lawrence says:

    Does anyone actually believe that this bill will help artists?
    Yes artists get shit on all the time.. But for once artists can afford to share their music. Independent music is thriving right now. Its the large record labels that are suffering.

    With a decent computer and digital audio interface and some good quality mics, you can make a good sounding recording… File sharing is an excellent tool for promotion.

    Music sales have gone up since 2000, and it’s not a coincidence that file sharing has also.

    The music industry needs to completely change their business model, to one more compatible with the 21st century. I don’t really want to pay 10,000 dollars for a decent music collection.

  66. Mimi Williams says:

    Not sure about the strategy
    I’m not certain that writing to the Prime Minister or Mr. Moore is going to make any difference. In fact, I’d bet my house it won’t. You know that they are not going to be swayed by a public letter writing campaign any more now than they were during the “consultation” process. I’d suggest energies are better spent working to ensure that Opposition MPs vote against the bill.

  67. Vanessa Rodrigues says:

    musician/composer AGAINST the DMCA
    I am a musician/composer and I am against this legislation. This is NOT just about kids downloading pop music for free off limewire. This is about access to information and cultural content across many different fields (journalism, education, etc), and also about your personal rights as a consumer. It will be ILLEGAL to circumvent any digital lock for any purpose whatsoever, so forget about parody and satire, or using a news clipping to teach a social studies class. It will be illegal to make backup copies of your OWN content for your own use – so if your kid scratches your favorite CD, because you weren’t allowed to back it up in the first place, you’ll just have to buy it again IF whatever huge corporation who owns the master recording decides to make it available for purchase. It will be illegal to take apart your OWN CD player to fix a part in it if that device comes with any sort of digital lock, even if that aspect is not affected by your taking the screws out, and if in the end you have to admit defeat and send it to the dealer for repair, you could be on the hook for thousands of $$$ in copyright fines! If a media corporation who controls digital archives of particular articles goes belly up, or just decides not to release particular data, we will have NO way of accessing and disseminating that information. Control and manipulation of information is how dictatorships start. This is not about limewire, people, this is about democracy. Wake the f*** up. And yes, I am a composer who receives SOCAN royalties from my copyrighted works and have probably “lost” a lot of money by people downloading my music for free rather than buying it … but not in a million years would I trade my freedom of expression and access to information for the measly few more bucks I might get if these laws go through.

  68. I give up. says:

    Just chalk it up to Government not working for the people, serving the interests of the US Recording industry. There doesn’t seem to be anything you can do to these guys once they take office, they have a God complex. What are going to do, vote the Liberals in? Vote the NDP in?

  69. Mr. Scarey Anon Name says:

    @Sandy Crawley
    So I searched Sandy Crawley and I see a linkden profile saying he is Director of Access Copyright. So Naturally I searched Access copyright and found Access Copyright was the one trying to brainwash Canadian kids as young as 6-years old with the “Captain Copyright” child propaganda cartoon that drew heavy criticisms from the public and was flamed out of existence.

    These are also the clowns who tried to sue Staples (ie. The Business Depot/Bureau en Gros) for 10-million dollars “over unauthorized photocopying by store customers”. Each and every copy made was an infringement!

    “Moreover, Acess Copyright has great difficulty distributing to actual authors the tens of millions a year is so successfully collects. No problem, however, in paying for staff, consultants, lawyers, etc. About 17% of its 2008 revenues of about $37 million went to operating expenses.”

    Then Access Copyright tried to steal money by listing Public Domain works in its repertoire for digital licensing. That’s right, they tried convincing people you had to pay for Public Domain works from 1931. How’s that for credibility!

    I think access copyrights actions speak volumes. Yet they appear to be here saying, “intellectual property is not “anti-consumer””.

    Go figure.

    Now I don’t know if this is the same Canadian Sandy Crawley shown here,, or if he was part of AC while they tried to program 6 year olds with industry propaganda and steal money from Canadian consumers with public domain works. But, if it is, then please go back under your rock. ty.

  70. Miss Rodrigues…
    Thank you for your comments. Hopefully I am not alone in appreciating that, as someone who this truly affects, you’ve taken the time to voice your opinion. And especially for understanding and seeing the point of view of consumers and your fans. That seems to be in rare supply these days.

    Can’t say that I’ve knowningly heard your music before, but it’s fantastic and I’m sure you’ll have more than one new fan from posting this.

  71. You all complain about your ‘freedoms’ being taken away with this law when the truth is that YOU have all been taking away our essential freedoms as Artists for YEARS.

    No one is forcing you to listen, watch or buy our art. NO ONE. And yet you are anonymously TAKING our hard work without giving us anything in return. And to make it worse – YOU SEE NO PROBLEM IN THIS?!?

    @ Wonders

    Your analogy does not hold up. No one is banning P2P or the technology. I can still choose, as an artist, to put up MY work for free sharing when ever I want. The difference is that FINALLY it’s MY choice.

    Don’t tell me “only some people” are downloading illegally when if you go to ANY of the major Bit Torrent sites 95 % or more is unauthorized content.

    Please explain to me how it’s ok for a site like isohunt to make THOUSANDS of dollars a month in advertising and donations while giving NOTHING to the content creators they make money off of??

    Do YOU work for free??

  72. Jim…
    Could you please explain what freedom is being taken away from you? It sounds as though you’re equating a downloaded song to a loss of a sale; something which I’ve never seen anyone logically prove.

    More importantly you’re making the assumption that all we want is to get free media. That is entirely not true as you’ll see in my previous comment. I want the freedom to do as I see fit with my media, not be dictated to what I can and can not do. I don’t want any of my media players have to be legally cleared and certified, I don’t want border guards to have the right to force me to prove my ownership of music on my mp3 player. I do not want legal resources being diverted away from real crimes so the CRIA can sue 12 year old girls in court.

    Am I losing freedom? Hell yes I am and those freedoms have nothing to do with someone downloading your music.

  73. Jason Boyko says:

    I am a musician
    I am a musician, actually, for those of you whining brats who claim that musicians are ripping you off, and on behalf of musicians, fuck this bill. This won’t help me.

  74. Mr Wake up says:

    “Please explain to me how it’s ok for a site like isohunt to make THOUSANDS of dollars a month in advertising and donations while giving NOTHING to the content creators they make money off of?? ”

    Did you ask the same question to Sandy Crawley of Access copyright which makes tens of Millions and not thousands? If not, I think you should.

  75. I’m a new media producer. This bill will actually hinder my ability to make money and compete in the marketplace. It’s not good for musicians, it’s not good for creators. No matter what law we have, it will NOT deterr file sharing, it will NOT protect artists and creators incomes, in fact it threatens it. We should be legalizing file sharing, and compensating our artistic talent and creators for it.

    I stand with our Canadian musicians and creators who are agaist a Canadian DMCA.

  76. really?
    Jim, you obviously have a very limited understanding of this matter.

    Independent artists have rarely made any significant amount of money from record sales. Artists, in fact, usually lost a significant amount of money recording.

    CD/record Sales have never been the primary source of money for many artists.

    I am all for copyright reform that will be fair to content creators as well as consumers, but supporting this bill is fair to neither.

  77. Sandy Crawley says:

    Scary Anon et al.
    As a matter of fact I was not a director (that’s a volunteer position) at Access Copyright at the time of the campaign you mentioned. But you certainly have posted some scurrilous untruths about the not-for-profit organization that has been so demonized and distorted by Professor Geist among others.

    And I would also point out to the person who suggested that I support the bill we haven’t seen yet, that also is untrue. People certainly seem to enjoy jumping to conclusions hereabouts….

  78. Sandy Crawley says:

    Mr. Wake up
    Access Copyright doesn’t “make” a dime. Most of the royalties we collect and distribute represent less than one half of one percent of the budgets of the post-secondary educational institutions that pay those royalties. How is that “ripping off” anyone pray tel?

  79. Sandy, you have my apologies for jumping to a conclusion. It was rude of me to just assume that you were in favour of draconian copyright bills because you jumped to the conclusion that we’re all theives.

    Oh… wait a minute.

  80. You should be so lucky
    Once someone puts something out there for everyone, its free for all. If its out there for sole purpose of consumption, expect it to be devoured… you should be so lucky. If it sucks no one will bother with it.

  81. Depressing
    With the news of ACTA and this new copyright bill, I am thoroughly depressed to see our government disregard the voices and opinions of Canadians and side instead with the US and special interest groups. Last year I was proud of my country; the copyright consultation was listening to the voices of the people, and we stood our ground against the US and their DMCA laws. This year, I am ashamed of our government and what they are bringing to Canada.

    I will put pen to paper and send my thoughts to my MP, but it’s clear that our government doesn’t care. Perhaps it’s not too late to pack up and move to a country with the stones to stand against the US and their draconian copyright laws.

  82. anonymous IP says:

    Anonymyze your IP adress. Use freenet. Go back to usenet.

  83. Mr. Black says:

    GOOD IDEA!!!
    C-61 is the greatest idea in the history of all Canada!!! Even greater than the free healhcare!!!

    I have some ideas for the new DMCA bil

    Not only should it be illegal for downloading music and making those horrid copies dvds, cd, and tv shows, oh no!!!

    It should be also illegal to tape your cousin’s wedding without written permission, let alone sending it to grandma afterwards

    It should be illegal to repeat jokes you found on the internet, quote lines from a book or a movie, dress up like cartoon characters on halloween, or sing copyrighted songs in the shower!

    They should permit random seaches on every house, computer and ipod to see if anyone is breaking this wonderful law!

    And most importantly offenders shouldn’t just have to pay a silly fine! NO! They should be taken from thier homes and be tourtured to DEATH!!! And then have their families killed because they are tainted by copyright offender!

    Copyright infirgement is a serious crime, even worse than genoside and child porn!!!

    Have a nice day

  84. Earthling says:

    letters wont’ do it. physical protests in the streets is the only thing Harper will be unable to ignore

  85. stevejobsangryliver says:

    Storm the Gates
    Pitch Forks and Torches people, we need to rally like they do in Europe! If 500K or a 1M people show up on Parliament Hill maybe they will change their minds. Make no mistake, this 100% corporate payoff lobbying.

  86. stevejobsangryliver
    Are you sure that’s a good idea? You said it yourself; it’s been done before in Europe so we might get sued for making an infringing copy 🙂

  87. Re: Earthing’s responce
    You’re right! I beleive that is the only thing we can do at this point. I thinking about starting a petition against the new bill, but sadly the only thing we can do is resort to violence or something that would gather attendtion.

    Another idea is to demand a recall election, the dmca bill is going to be introduced NOT passed in six weeks so we do have time!

  88. Anonymous Coward says:

    We all know great when we hear it.

    There’s less great than ever before.

    There’s tons of mediocre.

    But we no longer care about mediocre. We’re at an endless smorgasbord where we can cherry-pick the best items, and don’t even have to pay for them. Don’t complain, this is reality. You just can’t sell crap anymore. It’s almost impossible to sell good. And even if you’ve got incredible, you might have to pay people to listen at first. Whether it be with free food at a gig, never mind free admission, free beer…

    In other words, we live in a topsy-turvy world. The consumer is now the desirable item, not the act. How much are you willing to pay, what shenanigans are you willing to employ to buy the rare commodity he’s got to sell, time? We’ve got plenty of music, but they’re not making any more time.

  89. @ Joe
    I agree with everything you said Joe. Any Bill restricting what I do with media I purchased should be mine. If I want to jailbreak my iphone or copy a new OS to it such as Android I should be able to do it. Does all of this mean I cannot install windows on a mac or mac on a PC because Apple does not like it. That will be a crime now that won’t be enforced by the police as much as it will be enforced by civil actions by the recording industry, apple and the lot. Any artist that all of a sudden thinks they are going to get rich beacuse of this law is kidding themselves. I pay for any content I want. If I download it and see it is good enough I do buy the darn thing. In some cases getting the stuff may actually open the exposure of a group to a larger audience and promote future sales. It is so easy to pass the buck on downloading as the reason. I buy an ipods touch and now the governemnt wants to tell me whart I can do with it. Leave it to Harper to ignore the will of the people. Not the first time and won’t be the last. I liked Canada a lot more when we weren’t a puppet of the States on so many issues. Really is too bad George Bush moved North after the last election.


  90. earthling says:

    i did Not suggest violence. i use the word ‘physical’ to mean bodies showing up to protest the bill. 100 people with protest signs, students waving i-pods in protest, media coverage on the news, interviews with protesters etc is more effective than 10000 letters

  91. @Sandy Crawley
    “Access Copyright doesn’t “make” a dime. Most of the royalties we collect and distribute represent less than one half of one percent of the budgets of the post-secondary educational institutions that pay those royalties. How is that “ripping off” anyone pray tel?”

    Can you please post the overall budget of Access Copyright. I’ve worked for several non-profit organizations, and what you are stating here with respect to Access Copyright “doesn’t make a dime” I find to be completely false, especially when some board of directors in non-profit organizations are paid “administrative” fee’s.

    Since Access Copyright is in fact non-profit, their budget should be open to public audit. I’d be interested in any financial documents from Access Copyright that proves the assertion that this organization doesn’t make a “Dime”, and that all revenue’s are passed on to creators, less of course administrative fee’s. I’d be really interested in looking at the numbers to see how much creators are paying to keep this organization alive.

    No worries if you can’t post these documents. They should be available to anyone through an access to information request, since non-profit organizations are essentially answerable to the public within Canadian law.

  92. Laurel L. Russwurm says:

    They WANT you to give up.
    Democracy is supposed to mean that laws are made to reflect society’s mores. Unfortunately Prime Minister Stephen Harper believes imposing laws from above is a better idea. It might not be so bad if he wasn’t imposing laws on Canadians to appease a foreign industry lobby group.

    If we give up, they win.

    And that will be bad for Canada.

    It will be terrible for Canadian culture, as Jason K points out. This will HARM all independent Canadian creators. Before making laws, the rule should be that the law makers understand the issues. Making DMCA type punishments into law without expanding fair use dramatically (which we know Access copyright will fight to the death) will but Canada at a SEVERE economic disadvantage.

    Right or wrong, politicians attach far more weight to paper letters than email. After all, anyone could say they were anyone on an email. (Like that doesn’t hold true for a paper letter.) But email is EASY. It takes so little effort for us to send that maybe it doesn’t mean we’re really serious. We haven’t showed our commitment to the issue by writing on actual paper and giving Canada Post something to do. Last year when I emailed politicians about an issue, some of them weren’t tech savvy enough to turn off the email confirmations. Of those, about half confirmed that my email was deleted without being read. So look at it this way, if you send them a paper letter, someone in the office has to at least open it before throwing it out.

    But don’t stop with just these guys. Send copies of your letter to all the politicians in your riding. But more important: tell everybody you know about this. This is NOT a special interest issue, this will affect everyone in Canada AND the economy. But the media isn’t talking about it. Wonder why.

    So we have to.

    To our advantage we are blessed with a minority government. Hip hip hooray. That means they can’t just pass it off if there is a massive public outcry. So I’m off to blog about it… trying to stir up a massive public outcry. Gonna call the blog post “Canada don’t need no stinkin’ DMCA”. You can blog too… or tweet.. or dent.

    You can also check out to work for electoral reform, (which we need badly) or see of you can help out down at the new Canadian copyright reform party, , who should be ready to roll come the next election.

    @Jim: you’re kidding, right? It is the Independent musicians who need the Internet to distribute their music and build a following. It is the large corporations who used to be able to barter exposure for the musician’s copyright who are fighting against the Internet, pretending they want to stop pirates when really the goal is to stop Independents… because that’s the only way they’ll regain omnipotence.

    Just about to post when I noticed the captcha which reads: the owners.

    Which makes me wonder, who are the owners of Canada? Are we a sovereign nation? Do we own our own art and culture? Are our laws our own?

  93. All the arguments for these laws seem to misunderstand, saying anyone who supports them is a pirate / thief. These laws are not about fighting piracy, they are intended to further limit legitimate activities of those of us who still pay for media. Piracy is already against the law, and the only new things made illegal will be the activities of legitimate paying users and those who currently should be protected under fair dealing.

  94. err “anyone who supports them is a” should be “anyone who does not support them is a” !

  95. If the bill ends up passing, I will consider the Canadian government to be the enemy of the people, and begin acting accordingly.

  96. Kirk Bannister says:

    I am sick and tired of this Government
    Just what I was expecting, here we go again. I am really starting to hate my government, I never liked the conservatives much to begin with, now they are really starting to piss me off. I am sick and tired of these assholes taking away my rights, freedoms and privileges away, as well as from every other Canadian. What was legal yesterday, is now illegal today, thats really got to stop. I used to be a proud Canadian, Not anymore.

    As a Canadian, it is our right to make our voices heard to our Government, and if they stop listening, we need to rally the support needed to overthrow them, and elect a new government. I am just so sick and tired of the conservatives, there nothing but a bunch of corporate bowing idiots. Leave the copyright act alone, it doesnt need to be changed.

  97. This is the first and the last warning I will give on the topic, incidentally, and I will not turn back once I have started down that path.

  98. @Sandy Crawly:

    “Most of the comment here is anti-creator. The concept of copyright exists to protect the value of content. Legislation to protect intellectual property is not “anti-consumer” unless you believe there should be no protection.”

    You pass lobbying 101, but fail logic 101. It is not an either-or affair, and I don’t see anyone saying it is, except for you.

    “No one is forcing you to buy any particular content. There are plenty of people who believe in giving content for free. Help yourselves.The presumption that you should have access to all and any content at no cost is specious and immature. No wonder most of you keep your identities hidden.”

    Once again, an F in logic 101. I direct you to Google for “straw man fallacy.” I don’t see anyone here suggesting anything remotely like this. Have you actually read the points people are making? They’re a lot more reasonable and nuanced than you seem to think they are.

  99. @Laurel L. Russwurm
    “Which makes me wonder, who are the owners of Canada? Are we a sovereign nation? Do we own our own art and culture? Are our laws our own?”

    That’s a very interesting comment actually and something I think that’s boiling up to be a front line issue in politics right now. The Jaffer case exposed a lot with respect to our lobbying laws. Many political discussions in media right now revolve around the power of “lobbyists”, and what laws are needed to ensure our democratic values are set. The Conservatives have a lot of very good proposals on this, which makes me wonder exactly what the hell is going on with this copyright legislation. A Canadian DMCA would surely back fire on the Conservatives with respect to being seen right now as anti-lobby almost.

    There’s a move coming once again though by the Harper Government to scrap or severely reduce public funding of political parties “again”. Opposition MP’s are wanting some rules based on a corporate funding cap if this happens. In the US, Prof. Lessig is fighting for public funding of elected officials because essentially the lobby groups have taken over Washington. We end up with a global ressession pretty much because of it, and a government that refuses to listen to people without a $100,000 campaign contribution.

    A good video to watch with respect to how much economic damage that can occur in that style of politics is here:

    The neo-con ideology is to let basically big business run the country rather than it’s people. Something I think Canadians will have to decide very shortly on what type of “democracy” we want here. That’s not only scary, it’s actually very sad. And very sad to see the intelligence of Canadians as a whole diminished by voter apathy.

  100. Ben Charron says:

    Who needs the Consumer anyway?
    I never cease to be amazed at how big corporations with seemingly endless resources can so easily manipulate sovereign governments either by threats or by corruption. I see this as yet another prime example of how Canada kow-tows to greedy US-based lobby groups. Let’s face it, all this is for greed – especially in the entertainment industry.

    For many years, the entertainment industry had it their way and milked consumers for all their worth. They’ve never been interested in what the consumer wants but only what they want to push on the consumer and to charge the maximum for the privilege.

    When the consumer wanted to get good music tracks for their money, did the entertainment industry respond? It simply turned a blind eye on the consumer, who, let us remember, fills the industry’s coffers. When online services appeared offering low-cost or no-cost download of tracks, the only response from the industry was and continues to be – sue, sue, sue! Had the industry been even slightly forward-thinking, they would have been the beneficiaries of a huge and lucrative new market instead of simply wanting to flog the poor consumer.

    Please don’t get me wrong, I don’t believe in theft of any kind. I don’t have any illegal music tracks, videos, of software. I’ve paid for everything I have and will continue to do so. On the other hand, I’m very tired of being called a criminal, yes a criminal. After all, every piece of blank media – tapes, CD’s, DVD’s and who knows what else – includes a “we know you’re going to make an illegal copy of something” fee. These fees are then distributed to the industry. Gee, I wish I could make easy money like that!

    I’ve come to the conclusion that industry really feels it does not need the consumer anyway! At least no one really wants to listen to us or take anything we have to say into consideration. Never mind that billions of dollars are spent on constantly bombarding us with advertising in every possible way. No place is sacred! There are ads on TV, radio, public transportation, down every street, along highways, in other ads even, and you can rarely see a web page today where less than a third of the space is used by ads. Never mind that governments are doing all they can to get us to spend our money to get the economy going.

    You know, when it really comes down to it, my drop in the ocean may not seem like much, but when you combine it with all the other drops, you get an ocean. Consumers made it known to the industry that they were not happy with being ripped off and and entertainment industry sales started to fall dramatically – to the weeping and wailing of corporate executives. Their main response – sue, sue, sue. Hit the terrible copyright infringing online distributors and hit the terrible copyright infringing school kid at home. Hit them for all their worth. When sales keep going down…go after the governments to make laws that will let the industry sue some more!

    Well, consumers still control their money – for now anyway. And, they still control their votes!

  101. earthling says:

    Harper is a NWO puppet, appointed by the same ‘elite’ who control half the planet. He does battle with enemy puppets in Afghanistan, and will be replaced with a different looking puppet if you vote him out. Read Henry Makow.

  102. Re: Earthling
    You’re right, media attention is more effective than just a bunch of letters. One would think a letter voicing his opinions would help, but in reality it wouldn’t.

    I admit! I was overexaggerating when I said, “we have to resort to violence” But it’s time like the present to take a physical approach if we want anything to be done around her!

  103. I’ll be writing some letters along the lines of

    If you pass this legislation I will be voting for Party XXXX despite the fact I find them cowardly, immoral, and just plain idiotic. In addition here is a copy of the post dated(after the vote date of the legislation) check to their party. Previously I have been a devotee to the conservative party but this legislation is a complete ass raping of the Canadian citizen and his legal rights that I find myself with absolutely no choice but to vote for any party but conservative.

  104. Jan Rubak says:

    Here’s an audio CD that I distributed at Jim Prentice’s Stampede Breakfast almost two years ago:

    In a nutshell:
    – Copyright is about balancing interests and serving the public good, not about preserving business models that are no longer viable in the face of technological progress.
    – Digital Rights Management (a.k.a. Technological Protection Measures) are primarily about anti-competitive practices and have essentially zero impact on digital piracy.

    It’s all CC-licensed, so feel free to record your own introduction or create your own abridgements. Burn to CD and distribute to your hearts content!

  105. Jan Rubak says:

    Let’s try that again…
    Okay, apparently the link didn’t make it through the “post comment” operation.

  106. Dwight Williams says:

    As both creator and consumer?
    I fail to see how such a bill would truly help me in any way.

  107. Source?
    Can we get something solid to oppose? I’m thinking it would be better to write a letter once something has been reliably confirmed and we have some real talking points. Our position will be much stronger once there are officials we can cite going obviously and directly against the results of the costly consultation.

  108. Yes, you can back your position on leaks
    “Can we get something solid to oppose? I’m thinking it would be better to write a letter once something has been reliably confirmed”

    This government is the most secretive ever, so, YES, you can back your position with leaks. Just look at the ACTA leaks

  109. Jean-François Mezei says:

    Democracy is more than just voting every couple of years. It is about getting involved to influence the government between elections.

    Those who understand how government works get their way with the government.

    If you take action against this bill and it still passes, at least you know that you did your civic duty and spoke out. And you also have proof that your government doesn’t listen to the people it represents.

    If you give up and do nothing, then you effectively give the government carte blanche to do as it wishes and you effectively forfeit your right to complain.

  110. Captain Hook says:

    Wow, this has been a busy blog since I left it this morning. Apparently there are a lot of people with a lot to say. I do hope this translates into ears full for our dear parliamentarians.

  111. m00nstone says:

    Fair consumer loses
    If I legitimately rent an HD movie on my Xbox right now, it costs me almost a tenth of my Rogers download quota. If the government had a clue, they would go after the large corporations that violate consumer rights and the artists alike. Oh, I forgot who they represent…

  112. I wonder how we can get Tony Clement to run the Conservative Party? He sounds at least open to a different approach.

  113. “I wonder how we can get Tony Clement to run the Conservative Party? He sounds at least open to a different approach.”
    Heh. Unfortunately, there isn’t much else to recommend him.

  114. Easy Solution says:

    There is a very easy solution!
    Stop consuming the industry’s intellectually bankrupt material. Why are we all so worried about the garbage they spew?

  115. Some Guy says:

    There’s got to be a better way…
    The current model the media industry relies on is not sustainable, heck even apple has recently pushed for DRM free tracks. So why is legislation being designed to pander to the industry, and avoid any impetus for innovation in the field. Applying outdated protectionist methodologies to something that is essentially physically intangible, is tantamount to granting monopolies on expression.

  116. @Sandy Crawley
    I guess Access Copyright and a few rouge authors such as yourself who would Support a Canadian DMCA, are actually NOT the majority of writers and authors in Canada. The Writers Guild is looking to legalizing file sharing:

    Again, where are those budget documents I asked for with respect to Access Copyright. I would so seriously love to take a look to ensure that Access Copyright isn’t pocketing any money, and that all of the royalties it collects are distributed towards authors and writers.

  117. A pirate
    Given that next to nothing is manufactured in the USA anymore, the only real export they have now is media. Gotta protect it in the only way they know how… bullying into submission.

    Say bye bye to Canadian content. This is only the first step to world domination.

    (my captcha words are “necessary misfits”… nice.)

  118. Now we know why ACTA will be subservient to Canadian copyright law

  119. honk if you hate Harper

  120. AnnoyedOne says:

    This is a step in the wrong direction for our laws, hell its a big leap in the wrong direction. This is why we need the Pirate Party sign up and show your support.

  121. I Wish I Was Q says:

    What the world needs now, is…

    We need a benevolent omnipotent being who will organize it for us. All the despicable fucks like Harper and his cronies, from all over the planet, would be forced to participate in a series of round-robin cage matches. Every despicable fuck world leader goes into the cage to face one of his/her counterparts with nothing but his/her wits and a chainsaw. Our friendly Q would see to it that every TV channel and radio station the world over simulcasted the event. The winner gets to keep on living. The rest die over the course of the deathmatch and the world FUCKING REJOICES. With any luck all the despicable fucks still left over (they can’t all be in power at once can they now?) will have by then learned some lessons about respecting the will of the electorate –ACTUAL FUCKING PEOPLE– over the will of sociopathic corporations.


  122. @Jean “If you take action against this bill and it still passes, at least you know that you did your civic duty and spoke out. And you also have proof that your government doesn’t listen to the people it represents.”

    We already have our proof our government doesn’t listen to the people it represents. The fact that such legislation was practically unanimously denounced in the copyright consultation of 2009 and yet is not only still being considered today but on the verge of being signed into active law before the middle of the year says that our government doesn’t listen to the people.

    I’m writing a letter anyways, simply because it’s about the only thing I can do about this other than simply weep. Although I figure that they are both about as likely to make a difference… at least writing a letter sounds more constructive.

    But no… our current government does not care about Canadians or what they think.

  123. Hindgrinder says:

    PPCA – yar!
    We are standing on the brink of a Golden Age of Information Freedom and sharing….
    i’d hate to trade that for corporate profit regulated by revised maritime law.

    Fair use for the win!

    Go Pirates Go!


  124. end user says:

    @jim Please explain to me how it’s ok for a site like isohunt to make THOUSANDS of dollars a month in advertising and donations while giving NOTHING to the content creators they make money off of??

    Hmm with out computers and computer manufacturers making BILLIONS of hardware sales there would be no IsoHut. So why are computers not banned or restricted? With out ISP’s making MILLIONS there would be no internet access, therefor no “illegal” file sharing. With out shitty overpriced music that no one wants to buy there would be little incentive for people to sample music online to see if it was worth purchasing.

  125. This sucks.
    A lot of people are complaining about all the poor little torrents or how it serves places like Isohunt right.

    That’s a pretty easy black/white for some people. I’m in a shade of grey. I have dev tools on my Wii and DS, but I had to hack them to get it. It’s just a little hobby, I’m not stealing anything at all.

    And I guess now I’ll be doing prison time for it, because I’m not gonna stop.

  126. hay remember me says:

    hay remember me
    hay remember me the voter you represent me and the PEOPLE of Canada not any industry but the people, your don’t represent the economy, the environment, or any fat cats but the people. Fucking

    And then Conservatives wonder why they are out of touch.

  127. The DMCA is an issue that extends far beyond “the right to be paid”.

    In the USA, it’s been repeatedly used as a bludgeoning tool for large corporations to get rid of content that they didn’t like, regardless of the legality of it (like the 5 year lawsuit about a toddler dancing to a Prince song on Youtube). As long as the only defence for Fair Use involves going to court and paying thousands of dollars and wasting years in court rooms, I will never support any law such as this.

    Unless takedowns need to be reviewed by an independent 3rd party before being sent, and unless lawsuits can’t be directed at the largest pockets (like Viacom vs. Google), then any DMCA-type policy will inevitably lead to abuse.

  128. It doesn’t matter who supports laws like this. The conservatives are pushing it through. So much for democracy, huh?

  129. Harper has to be voted out. He supports genocide, with our tax dollars.

  130. DMCA must not allow to stay in Canada. Hate to see more kids and dead people get sue by this law. I remember in the US, they once sue a 4 years old kid and a dead person who died about a week later for downloading music. They even said the dead person must paid up before go to hell. This law is mend to be disrepect the dead and abuse the children legally.

    It is hard for me to believe some people are actually supporting for this laws. So do they want to see more 4 yr old kids to go to jail or more dead people to be sue?

  131. freshwatermermaid says:

    @Vanessa and a couple of Jasons
    Well said you guys. Downloading music is a sexy topic, so lots of people like to make the argument only about that. In fact it has to do with whether or not we can teach history, cultural studies, criticism and preserve any of the things that make up our identity. It seems hokey, but that’s what cultural artifacts are: the way to create who we are.

    As for the music industry per se, they’re no better at “protecting” artists than so-called theives. Most of the time they don’t act in the interest of artists and creators, they act in the best interest of selling small plastic discs. Not music, not art, the medium by which they are enjoyed. I wouldn’t have to work hard at a local arts magazine uncovering local talent if music companies promoted artists who didn’t immediately sell millions of pop records.

    This isn’t about a particular party or even a particular industry (believe it or not). It’s about us as Canadians being able to share and discuss, criticize, disagree on, enjoy, promote, purchase and create our own culture. Time to stand up.

  132. I agree, letters are generally a waste of time. There is only one thing that will get a politician’s attention, and that is a vote. I counted 128 comments here, or more precisely 128 votes. People have to use their vote as a loaded gun. Let these bastards know that you are organized. Let your local member know that not only will they lose your vote, but you will actively lobby your family, friends and acquaintances to switch their vote also. If you write to a politician as one person, you will be ignored, but write as a spokesperson for a group and it is a game changer. Gather a list names and signatures, and attach it to your letter.

  133. One last time, Just for the American hate sites.
    ok so like about the 3rd comment on this post I said I wouldn’t bother anymore. But, this morning when I got up and did my regular reading I came across that Dr. Geist American hate website by an American entertainment industry person (the other Canadian amigo’s will follow shortly, no doubt). So it pissed me off enough to try one last time. I won’t join facebook though.

    I’ll be writing it up and CC’ing it to:

    -ipad minister,
    -Dance-skool monkey boy puppet Harper,
    -Captain America Iggy,
    -Uncle Jack (Captain Canada as he is known here)
    -and my english hater Bloc MP Nadeau.

    I’ll get a couple of friends to do the same just in order to give that American entertainment industry Geist hater the finger.

    Thanks Castle (I know you read each and every post here), I truly did give up… Till I spotted your hate and jealousy.

  134. pat donovan says:

    Dear Ministers Moore and Clement

    in summary.i do NOT agree with the erosion of property rights in your legislative efforts.

    we are NOT a nation of renters, however profitable that be.

    The changes in property, privacy, freedom of speech and freedom of information put the ham-handed elgislation to shame.

    Shame, gentlemen, SHAME!

  135. i love you man says:

    run for governor general
    Mr Geist, you truly are a champion of the people’s rights. Please become our next Governor General.


  136. Speaking of thieves, what’s the word on that class-action lawsuit against the music industry for all the music they sold without having gotten the licensing rights or permission from the artists?

  137. Bob Villa says:

    This old horse is getting tired… they keeping trotting it out every decade
    Back in the old days of Vinyl, we copied to Cassette to listen to the music in the car. Or we taped off the radio, the latest songs, making a mix tape.
    Now we just want to rip the music we bought on CD’s to our MP3 player, to our cell phone, to our computer.
    The industry has always opposed these things, they want me to buy a new copy for the mp3 player, for the mix tape, for the cell phone ring tone and for the computer….
    Well it’s not going to happen, didn’t happen back in the days with Vinyl, not going to happen now with MP3s. Get over it and welcome to the digial age. Time to change your outdated ways again.

  138. Bob, I agree with what you are saying, but with the presence of laws that expressly disallow it, it can still be made technically difficult for the average person to do, and any technologies which would allow a person to accomplish with relative ease it will not be legal to sell, distribute, or import. This is most liable to be an issue as time rolls on and existing technologies are obsoleted by new ones.

  139. Because of Harper we have more dead Canadians, afghans, Iraqis, Palestinians etc. in his illegal ‘wars of choice’ to satisfy our ‘international obligations’

    Not satisfied with these achievements, he wants to kill the internet. Let’s kill his career.

  140. Politicians pay assistants to not read protest mail. The only thing they understand is angry mobs with signs, people yelling at them, screaming voters on the evening news. As long as people don’t take to the streets, it’s business as usual.

  141. Copyright affects MORE than merely music
    The technology aspect of copyright reform is certainly a sexy hot topic right now – however, copyright affects so much more, like books for instance. What changes if any to book rights and print rights are being implemented in this new Canadian Copyright reform?

  142. freshwatermermaid says:

    @jo and other not-letter writers
    We stopped this exact bill two years ago by going low-tech and writing letters. It might not seem sexy and it certainly doesn’t have the adrenaline-drama appeal of massive protests and loud shouting, but it worked. The bill died. I’m writing again, to my MP, the leaders of each party (they all read English, I know that because every one of them wrote me back), and major news outlets. This govt does not deserve the satisfaction of seeing us collectively stfu.

  143. S Harper says:

    You know…
    You trust me don’t you?
    This is for your own good. I must look at the greater good and decide what’s best for Canada. The individual is less important than the country.
    Yes, I know 99.9% of the voters don’t agree with my decision(s), but I’m in charge now and I’ll do what my advisor’s advise me to do.
    Trust me on this: It would be no different if you voted either of the other parties into power. We live for power and control and the ones that give it to us are the ‘big boys’ like Bell, Rogers, GM, etc… Even our friendly neighbour Uncle Sam bows to the pressure of money (and I in turn bow to the wishes of Uncle Sam).
    Face it: If you want something you must pay for it. Get a lobby group together, throw some money my way (at least 7 digits) and I’ll see what I can do for you, my newest friends…
    Mr Harper
    By the way, I did not caress that cute blonde’s bum during that photo op in Ottawa last year. Who are you going to believe? Her or me?

  144. Laurel L. Russwurm says:

    My ipadlock minister story
    I agree with freshwatermermaid and everyone else that making noise is what is needed.

    So I’ve included everything I can think of to fight the Canadian DMCA in my just finished mammoth blog post
    with several zillion links back to Professor Geist and some other good source material too including mailing addresses (until they prorogue, that’s pretty easy ‘because they are all at House of Commons, Ottawa, ON, K1A — except of course the unelected party leaders like Ms. May and Mr. Daynes for instance. And I know they both have constituencies. I’ll bet other indies or out-of-office politicians do too.)

    So here’s my ipadminister story:
    After retweeting this and many other articles re: Canadian DMCA yesterday I discovered that I had a Direct Message from the ipad minister himself on my Twitter account.

    He wanted to know why i was passing judgment before reading the legislation, so I answered his question quietly and without fanfare at the top of my article. I went to reply to his DM to give him a heads up, quietly, off the record, only to discover that i can’t. Now, I’m a Twitter noob, so I didn’t know that, but I understand that he is a self professed expert. I expect he knew I wouldn’t be able to talk back…. apparently he would have to follow me first. (and I can really see that happening!)

    This must mean he really only wants to speak to citizens, but not be spoken too. Democracy is in worse shape than I thought.

    Fight. Fight. Fight. Democracy is worth it.

  145. elections
    The only thing that has stopped this bill from being law so far is activism and good fortune of elections or prorogation stopping it in its tracks. If we ever end up with a majority government, we can kiss our rights goodbye.

  146. The lowest form of life is someone who will betray their own people for his own benefit. That is Stephen Harper.

  147. Laurel L. Russwurm says:

    CRTC approved UBB
    @Saskboy We have rights?

    I agree with you about the election thing, but even with minority government we’ve been screwed with UBB. That was 4,000 citizens protesting in a vacuum.

    UBB just put Canada at a huge disadvantage internationally. We just lost a huge bit of Internet access… CRTC has approved Bell Canada’s request to implement Usage Based Billing on the Independent Service Providers customers. (I will never grasp the rationale of why Bell can collect money from people who are not their customers.) On average, Canadian internet costs will at least double come September. They were already among the highest in the world. (For mediocre service too.) It was too bad, I was really attached to my Internet Service Provider, but it will be a miracle if they can stay in business.

    Any suggestions? Lots of info available at

    Since this will make the Internet so much more expensive for Canadians, probably a lot of the copyright stuff will be moot. Independent musicians and other artists will have a much harder time finding an audience when the audience can’t afford to wander freely online.

  148. to Jim or Sandy Crawler
    I read a lot on this board, and nothing cracks me up as much as the tag-team style good cop, bad cop routine as you two, (or one) just demonstrated. Thanks for the laugh.

    No sane person who wants to be taken seriously talks the way you do on a forum, with CAPITAL letters on all the key phrases that have been used as auto-responses in this highly volatile debate.

    You act like Jim’s softer half, using the same half-baked logic, but wording it in a soothing manner, as if to try and calm a screaming child.

    I’ve heard both of your arguments before elsewhere, and trust me, in my opinion you are in the minority. Out of all the views on this board, your comments stand out at opposite ends of the emotional extremes and both recycle the same tired examples in the same language as I’ve heard several other places.

    I welcome reading and trying to understand other’s viewpoints, that’s what makes a debate interesting, but this whole lack of independent thought, or narrow perspective, just becomes noise, when I read the same wording over and over again.

    We don’t have a perfect system, no sane person would argue that, but if there is anyone out there that truly believes what is being proposed would be a positive direction for this country and its citizens… I honestly believe you are a danger to this country’s freedom, independence and its future, or far too blind to realize it.

    To any in power: Look to the US, to see what problems they have had since going down this road. That is the future you seek to carve for us, and your citizens will crucify you for the privilege of leading them there.

    There have been countless abuses with the DMCA approach elsewhere, which seems to suggest some problems that would need to be fixed to even be credible enough for anyone in another country to reserve the opinion that our government actually put some thought into what came out of this. Right now the world is looking to us for answers on this issue, as the US looks to us for action. If one country beats another senseless with a stick, I’m sure there’s no doubt they won that fight, but that doesn’t make it right. If the law is too unjust, people will resist it, ignore it and fight it out in a public arena when they are caught in the crosshairs. Consequences follow every action taken, both good and bad… it’s called karma.


  149. C. Blanco says:

    Canadian creative artist
    Mr. Geist, I hope you are right. Canada urgently needs strengthening of copyright in order to save the information economy from destruction from unfettered thievery by a new generation of internet sociopaths who consider it their right to steal cultural products others have poured their lifeblood into. It doesn’t matter that the worst will be spurred to greater efforts of thievery; a responsible government can’t give in to anti-social and destructive behaviour just because policing it is difficult. The fact is that if society takes a strong stand against anti-social behaviour such as intellectual property theft, the majority of people will act responsibly and curb their illegal behaviour. It won’t matter that a criminal fringe continues to steal the most important kind of property that exists in the information age, namely intellectual property. Most of what they covet is of marginal interest to society anyway. The majority will obey copyright laws without being watched, just as the majority obey most laws without being watched. And that will aloow Canada to take its place as a fully participating member in the inform,ation economy. Good work, James Moore!

  150. Hello, are there any Politicians in Canada who are against this bill?
    Maybe they could be useful in helping the protest.

  151. But I Really Want Control
    C. Blanco, I truly hope your desire for societal controls never becomes law, in Canada.

    If I acquire a piece of art made by you, and I like it, it won’t matter how I acquired it, you will be rewarded with what it’s worth to me – *if* you have made that avenue of payment available to me. OTOH, if your art sucks so badly that it requires legislation forcing people to pay first and take their chances, no number of laws is going to yield a decent income for you; your rep will be trash and no one will allow themselves to get burned by your incompetence a second time (neither patrons nor market masters).

    If you want to retain control of your art, it should be up to you to bring the public to experience it in your own controlled environment. I have no qualms about you keeping your art in your place and limiting the experience as you see fit, asking me to pay to partake of it. If you want your art to be in my home, then it will absolutely be on my terms. Your market niche has been affected by technological change, and it is you, not society, that should be expected to change with it. All the non-artists (professionals and labourers alike) of the developed worlds roll with this kind of change, all the time. Why not float a bit of risk on your own, like the rest of the independent business people? Put it out there and see if it’s good enough to make it on its own. I mean, just because you might not pay for something without a price tag on it, doesn’t mean that none of us would. Personally, that kind of independence would feel better, to me, than begging for a contract from the establishment. Put another way, why does an artist’s work need the iron will of a monopolized industry to sell itself?

    Given modern economic realities, it seems unlikely that either of us will ever be uncommonly wealthy from producing a bit of art. Those days are sooooooo long past. Contemporary artists have to be prolific at their craft, just like all the non-artists of the world. An artist, whose motivation is wealth, will have to garner a large number of (micro)patrons and appease them. Alternately, there is always that centuries-long tradition of finding a single wealthy patron to keep you in the lifestyle you prefer.

    I feel strongly enough about this that I would forgo art altogether, if I must. I’m sorry the probability of you attaining great wealth/influence through a controlled market has diminished significantly; it would seem that artists have had to deal with this sort of crap ever since art became portable/copyable, but the cost being demanded from the consuming public, this day, is just too high.

  152. Gordon Garmaise says:

    Over more years than I care to admit to, I have noticed a pattern in our legislative process:

    a) The government wants to make an unpopular change.

    b) A draconian proposal is leaked.

    c) An extreme (but not quite draconian) bill is introduced.

    d) The bill’s excesses are amended out.

    e) All the opponents are relieved that the final law is much more reasonable than it was rumored.

    f) The government pretends that it has compromised, but it got what it really set out for in the first place.

    To counter these tactics we need to demand the complete abolition of copyright. Then, we can “compromise” on the status quo.

    Lets not be suckers again.

    If the Americans don’t like it they can keep their “intellectual property,” it’s mostly crap anyway.

  153. Label not all for the response of one
    @C. Blanco

    I couldn’t help but feel that such a heartfelt emotional response was in direct reply to my comment above, yet you didn’t identify who exactly on this board you felt indicated “dangerous, anti-social, thieving, sociopathic” behavior.

    I can only assume you are grouping together anyone who does not wish for stricter copyright into this category. I realize all too well, that my comment does not fit into the general intelligent-thinking, reality-based atmosphere that this board frequents in such discussion, as it wasn’t supposed to.

    I’m sure they are many people in both copyfight and copyright camps that would disagree entirely with what I previously said. If my comments hadn’t little to any merit I would simply be content with being ignored.

    It was merely posted to illicit a response, which was rather timely I might add. Think of me as a troll, if you wish that. Actually, I’m here only to observe what transpires.

    From my observations, anyone who is too far into either camp is never taken seriously by the other, that could be said for most arguments. No, people realize that content must come from somewhere, and even free content providers need to make a living somehow. People also realize that large players are throwing lots of money and effort into forcing the government of *insert country name here* into solving the problems of the digital evolution.

    Should the music/movie/software/misc industry be able to effectively influence what our or any government decides to pass as law? That’s one question I like hearing responses to.

    In retrospect, about a decade ago on another forum, I once commented a prediction that free content, or limited licensing would probably be the best way to go… and there have been ones that have chosen for themselves to build up a sustainable business model as of today. I would hate to think these pioneers with such foresight would be hindered by any new laws, to placate the ones who saw the train rushing at them, but refused to move from the tracks.

    As I’ve stated before, you can agree, disagree or totally outright ignore what I have to say. Just don’t think my views reflect anything beyond my own observations. Also, sorry for having a bit of fun on this board. There shall be no more replies from me.


  154. Igor Stravinsky says:

    “Good composers borrow, great composers steal.”

  155. Anonymous says:

    I’ve read the goals of the pirate party and can agree with the principles that they appear to represent, but the mere usage of the term piracy creates an unavoidable implied association with the concepts behind it, and I do not in any way, shape, or form, wish to be connected with or a part of anything which suggests the mere appearance of such an association.

  156. Anonymous says:

    This is awful.

  157. Angry Voter says:

    I wrote many letters to the relevant politicians at the time regarding C-61, including Steven Harper, Jim Prentice, Josee Verner, leaders and critics from other parties, and my own MP, Russ Hiebert. Hiebert took just enough time to demonstrate that he is unwilling or unable to think for himself and therefore serves no useful function. The entire exercise achieved nothing. To me the copyright/DMCA/C-61 issue is an election issue. Despite voting Conservative/Reform in previous elections and even making financial donations to their party, I had no choice but to vote against Conservatives/Hiebert in the last election for this reason. Until and unless the Conservatives reverse course on this issue, I will continue to vote against them – I cannot compromise on this. I cannot stand by and do nothing while Harper deliberately works against the well being of Canadian citizens and our country as a whole. I will write more letters, but this time I won’t waste my time writing to Conservatives. What turned out to be mere “consultation” theatre proves to me that Harper puts US and corporate interests above those of Canadians.

  158. neostyles says:

    What’s the problem anyhow
    Michael Geist, Canada’s former copyright laws were an affront to very nature of fair exchange. Unless I am mistaken, non commercial file sharing has been legal up until know. It is no surprise that it has become home to so many perpetrators of mass infringement. Day in and day out, Canada harbors career criminals such as IsoHunt. I know it is unpopular, but rights holders matter to. Taking everything without giving anything back is not a viable business model and it does no favors to the econamy. Jobs are lost and millions in tax dollars are lost as well. People have chosen to frame this as an issue of subversion by the US government. We were the only voice of morality in this whole affair. Pirates continue to steal things in the millions. Clearly Canada does not see the issue with rights holders being hit by out of control theft. We on the other hand were not willingly to idly stand by. Of course the law is unpopular. It will effectively stems the flow of free material.

    People can say what they want about starting a “revolution.” I doubt any armchair activists are really willing to do anything of the sort. It’s utterly ridiculous, talking about starting a revolution because you have been rightfully denied the fruits of others labor when you aren’t willing to pay a cent.

    So tell me, Michael. Do you believe in fair compensation? Do you believe in seeking out those who break the law? Do you believe that people who are stolen from have the right to protect what is rightfully theirs?

  159. Market Evolution
    neostyles said :
    “Of course the law is unpopular. It will effectively stems the flow of free material. ”

    That really is the whole crux of the problem, isn’t it? The value of an entire market segment undermined by technological change, and an unwillingness, by the big players in the market niche, to accept the reduced income because of it. Hey, we’re not gonna change, let’s try and force everyone else to. Spin it any way you like, the home entertainment market has utterly lost value through natural market/technological forces. If the compensation that can yet be had from the new market is “not enough”, then it is time for creators to find a new way to control their products, without subverting the consumers rights (build your own environment and ply your art within it), or move on to new employment that is more accommodating to their financial preferences.
    For a fine example of how to yield a positive ROI on digital products in the information age, check out :
    The customers download the product and pay what they think it is worth. The group’s current net total is $437kUS; one of the game authors has already been quoted as saying he figures he’s made more than he possibly could have through traditional selling methods. I know, it’s gonna be a bitch for Big Media to be accountable to the customer – quality is going to weigh heavily in the world of “pay-what-it’s-worth”. But no one is insisting that they stay in the home market, as much as I like, say, a good movie, I am OK with them pulling back to playing their movies in theatres only (like their original business model) I mean, really, that way both their rights and our rights are still in tact. I feel quite confident there are people willing to fill that home market niche, should it suddenly become vacant, and I suspect business will be brisk and profitable.

    “We were the only voice of morality in this whole affair.”

    Whoa, I seriously doubt you were speaking for the moral majority in Canada. What you are rather referring to, I’d say, is your morality, and honestly, it sounds like it’s a fairly self-serving notion. As in : “I deserve whatever I think I deserve, and there should be a way to enforce it.” Thanks, but I think I’d prefer to let your patrons determine what your work is worth. If you were to take what a customer was (truly) willing to pay for, say, a movie, and subtract it from what has been extracted from them in the supply-controlled market, how many billions of unearned dollars have been taken from people? Your notion of criminal behaviour deserves a broader scope, if you are going to pontificate about morality.

    I think Canada is well-positioned to move ahead with a patron-controlled influence on the information economy, I think adopting the laws (which have been drafted by Americans, for their particular circumstance) proposed is a step backward that will harm my country, and I think if just one country (involved with these proposed controls) decides to run without yielding to the pressures to conform, all the other countries will fall into place alongside, without coercion.

  160. Captain Hook says:

    “Unless I am mistaken, non commercial file sharing has been legal up until know.”

    Yes indeed, you are mistaken. There is a reasonable argument that downloading of music is legal due to the CD levy, but uploading of them and downloading of all other copyrighted files without permission, is now and always has been illegal. Hell it is even illegal to copy a DVD movie to your iPod here.

    “It will effectively stems the flow of free material.”

    That is a fallacy. The US has had the DMCA for over ten years now and still the “flow of free material” continues. The only way to stem the flow is to have real fair and balanced copyright laws that earn the respect of the population. Then the majority will willingly follow them.

    “Do you believe that people who are stolen from have the right to protect what is rightfully theirs? ”

    I absolutely do, which is why laws that give control of my belongings to other people are wrong. If I buy an iPad iPhone, or and other iDevice, then I should be able to do with it what I want. The DRM put on these devices prohibit much more than just the breaking of copyright laws. If the media companies do not want me to tamper with these devices, then they should have the common decency of buying them themselves, then rent them back to me and enforce their no tampering restrictions via contract law. Using copyright law to take away my rights to control my belongings is a fundamental injustice.

  161. Very concerned says:

    All consumers want is something reasonable
    Let’s get back to basics here… Most people are law-abiding citizens and don’t really want to rip anyone off, least of all our favourite artists. However, the media companies aren’t selling music the way that we want to buy it. Most people use MP3s now, and most of us have multiple devices that play them. How reasonable is it for us to buy a CD and then be prevented from ripping the music to MP3s to play on our devices for our own personal use? There will be no point in buying CDs – they will be practically useless. So if we buy MP3s legally, they are full of DRM which prevents us from making any, or more than a very small number of copies of them, and also often restricts the type of devices we can play the music on. Imagine buying 500 songs at 50 cents each – an outlay of $250 + taxes. You can only make 1 copy of the songs, so that 1 copy goes from your computer onto ONE of your devices. Every time you change that device because you broke it, lost it, or want something new, you will have to buy your music all over again for another $250. This just isn’t financially feasible for most people, and neither is having to buy a copy of a song for each device you own. But MP3s downloaded from torrents have no such restrictions and permit fair use, so that is the main reason why most people do it.

    I completely understand that “clean”, DRM-free MP3s can easily be shared on the internet and copied by thousands of people, so there lies the dilemma. I believe that if the record companies sold clean MP3s, many honest people would choose to buy the music instead of downloading it with risk of penalty, and at least the companies would make more money than they are currently making. This is a very difficult trade-off, but draconian laws that severely restrict and punish consumers just isn’t the way to go. Hopefully reason will prevail.

  162. A very interesting program on copyright, in which M. Geist participated, was on CBC’s “Ideas” program, downloadable (legally) here:

    I’ve quoted the concluding thoughts, as relevant here. Too often the argument is “right holders vs. users”, forgetting that users are, in fact, right holders. The goal of copyright isn’t to protect private ownership of intellectual property, it’s to protect public access to intellectual and artistic works – granting limited copyright is a tool to foster creation, but that’s a means, not an end.

    (quote begins)
    As Steven Page suggested, what this is really about is control, the control that copyright holders had until the internet and all these copying technologies emerged on the scene.

    What we might want to remember, though, is that this control isn’t really something that copyright holders have, to give or to take away. Remember, the central idea behind copyright used to be, that the natural place of creative expression is in the public domain. Copyright is something that we, the public, have granted to creators on a temporary and limited basis. What we need to remember in this debate is that we own these ideas. We’ve just given copyright holders a license to use them.

  163. Ben Hurr says:

    Oh, I like how the industries have turned copyright protection into a holy war of good versus evil these days. It’s bound to get ridiculous, such as starting torches and pitchfork mobs over copyright reform.

    ps – neostyles sprews pro-copyright propaganda everywhere, from what I’ve seen.

  164. It’s so sad to see how corrupt our government has become. They care more about corporate welfare than the welfare of the people they are suppose to be representing. They spend a year doing this “dog & pony show” (at the expense of our tax dollars) to appease the public when they probably have already gotten the bill to be passed from Big Business or the corporate-friendly US.

  165. Harper, Ignatieff, the slugs who thought up the DMCA, the MAFIAA, the CRIA and the ISPs make me sick. I wish that the NDP could lead the country, but electing the same party for the past 140 years (like there’s a difference between the Liberals and Conservatives) led to the public getting complacent. In the meanwhile, I’d probably download as many things as I possibly can before the “Conservatives” and “Liberals” (more “Annexation Party”) pass the bill, just to bite my thumb at them.

  166. Just the first step.
    Once it’s passed they’ll be able to implement ACTA which will be much worse.

    The Conservative Party of Canada are shills for America. Always have been. That drunk idiot Mulroney was on his knees every chance he had. Harper idolizes him. I’d say vote them out, but that won’t change anything. The same people call the shots. Better is to not partake in any of it. Civil disobedience and dissent is the only way. The rest is grade school nonsense. Our democracy is an illusion.

  167. Fred Frith says:

    Auto email TEMPLATE SITE
    Go here for the full editable auto template and add your own MP’s Email address.

    “Don’t wanna be an AMERICAN IDIOT”

  168. Fred Frith says:

    Writing my MPP and MP as well
    I am writing both and my Premier along with my HST complaint.

    “Don’t want to be an American idiot.
    One nation controlled by the media.
    Information age of hysteria.
    It’s calling out to idiot America.”

  169. Where does it stop.
    When I was a student, living solely on student loans and parents on disabiliy pension, I downloaded a lot…a hell of A LOT since I couldn’t afford buy anything ouside the essentials. I’m not going to try and justify the downloading, but it was much more acceptable 10 or 15 years ago.

    These days I buy my DVDs/BluRay and I buy a lot of them at an average of 20 per month, with over 1000 in my collection and probably 200+ I haven’t even seen yet. I don’t buy CDs anymore as I consider them to be antiquated technology, but will keep my 500+ collection. Now, I do pay the $8 or $9 to download an album from Napster, or whoever has what I want, then I can put 10+ albums on a CD and play that in my car…no, I don’t have an MP3 player. If I can’t get it on MP3, I don’t get it…period. I do remove the DRM encoding with a legally purchased tool specifically designed for that purpose. It will however, only remove DRM from legally purchased sources. If it comes to a point where I can’t remove the DRM, I simply won’t buy it. Same rules apply for games for me…I won’t buy games with installation limits…i.e. Bioshock is a good example. It’s a great game I will never buy.

    What I do download is TV shows. We still pay our outrageous $67 or so a month for satelite access, but we have little kids who are night-owls and no time to watch the TV we enjoy. On top of that, a lot of TV these days is not age appropriate for a 2 and a 4-year-old, even on YTV. So we download shows and watch them 3 or 4 at a time…when we do have time, then delete tham as space is required. How is this any different than VCR, PVR or any other recording device? If they want to prosecute me for that…so be it. I’ll stop supporting the industry alltogther and only buy second-hand movies…oh, wait, they’re trying to make second-hand sales illegal too. Soon they’ll make giving media away illegal because it takes profit away from the maker because the recipient may have otherwise bought the BD/DVD/CD or whatever. Soon they’ll introduce mass market expiring movies, such as the FlexPlay ones on amazon, which die a couple days after opening…then I will stop buying and wait for such things to air on TV. How does this help me when my kids want to watch “The Land Before time” 400 times straight. What a load of crap!!!! Where does it stop?

    As an aside…
    Most entertainment industry sectors are unwilling to implement and/or greatly lagging behind in the technology people crave these days. As a result, the industry has created much of their own problem and they’re now trying to make Joe Public pay for their lack of foresight. Draconian laws and sueing customers is not the answer. Have they learned nothing from Metallica? I think another large part of the problem stems from too many parents being afraid to say no to their kids; they’re trying to be “friends” with their kids…not “parents”. As a result, those very same kids are growing up getting EVERYTHING they want, without ever having to work for it, without ever having to save for it. It seems todays kids are becoming increasingly narcissistic and more and more often being raised with a warped or perverse sense of entitlement. How does this prepare them for “real life” at all? They get out in the real world and realize, “WHOLY-S%@T It’s not all about me, I don’t know how to cook, house work sucks, laundry sucks and what what do you mean that new electronic toy costs more than I take home in a month?”…and they wonder how they can live without it (No wonder divorce, depression and suicide is on the rise). I consider this a serious social problem and it’s creating a demographic which only iTunes and the iPod, as an entertainment industry, has managed to really tap in to.

  170. RIAAtarded says:

    Letter sent. Most cases I ignore the government it is an exercise in futility. They do whatever they want and never listen to the people that voted them into office in the first place. Why I’ve never bothered to vote. It only ever counts in respect to putting someone into power. Once that happens I’ve watched platforms that brought them there get ignored and reversed. This however is something I’ve watched for awhile now with disgust. Companies with failing business models trying to bleed ever last nickel from it’s consumer base. There come a point where you need to not only evolve to met your changing environment. They however are choosing to alienate their customers and worse yet try to dictate usage of something they no longer own. Once I buy it the ownership is mine.
    Make your voices count guys and speak out the government is voted for and represents the people. It is time big business heard that. As always keep up the good work Micheal it is nice to have one voice of sanity.

  171. Sigh
    Not surprised that the government isn’t listening… but to say that “Harper” isn’t listening (therefore suggesting that Iggy or Lenin, er, Layton, would, is disingenuous. None of the current crop of politicians who “owe” something to someone, somewhere, will ever listen to what we mere plebs want. The US isn’t going to cut off trade with Canada (we own the oil, amongst other resources) despite whatever sabre rattling and chest thumping they might do. That much is known by our fearless leaders, so obviously, they (being the real players calling the shots) have something far more powerful with which to make their intentions come to reality here. Money? Perhaps… a good guess, but I, along with all of you, will never know the real reasons why.

  172. The Cold Hard Truth says:

    I always had a feeling our government is a totalitarian. What kind of democracy is this if the actual people who are being governed don’t have a say?