Libraries and other knowledge institutions are increasingly dependent on works in digital form and are acutely affected by the deployment of TPMs to limit access to or use of copyrighted materials. Vendors should not be permitted to undermine the balanced rights users have been granted by the fair dealing clauses of the Act. Vendors should not be permitted, as part of their business model, to make otherwise fair (and therefore legal) dealings with copyrighted materials effectively illegal. Effecting what is or is not legal in our society is the job of our legislature. To say that this issue is fairly resolved because purchasers have a choice not to buy materials with digital locks is disingenuous and misleading. Vendors often have exclusive rights to sell particular content, and libraries and knowledge institutions have a mandate to meet all of the research and educational needs of their users. It is rarely possible for us to purchase the same content from any alternative vendor, let alone one who has chosen not to prevent what are legal uses of the material under the Copyright Act.
We recommend that the proposed wording in Bill C-32 be changed so that any uses that qualify under the fair dealing provisions would not be subject to the anticircumvention prohibitions in the Act. This will prevent the erosion of user rights in the Act, ensure that fair dealing will remain technologically neutral, and ensure that TPMs are designed to accommodate fair dealing in the digital environment.
Previous Daily Digital Locks: Provincial Resource Centre for the Visually Impaired (PRCVI) BC, Canadian Consumer Initiative, Retail Council of Canada, Canadian Council of Archives, Canadian Teachers’ Federation, Canadian Federation of Students, Canadian Civil Liberties Association, Documentary Organization of Canada, Canadian Library Association, Council of Ministers of Education Canada, Business Coalition for Balanced Copyright, Canadian Association of Research Libraries, Canadian Historical Association, Canadian National Institute for the Blind, Canadian Bookseller Association, Canadian Home and School Federation, Film Studies Association of Canada, Canadian Bar Association, Canadian Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences, Appropriation Art, Privacy Commissioner of Canada, Association of Newfoundland and Labrador Archives