Daily Digital Lock Dissenter, Day 25: Canadian Assoc of Music Libraries, Archives and Doc Centres

The Canadian Association of Music Libraries, Archives and Documentation Centres represents librarians, archivists, educators and researchers in the field of music. Members are drawn from universities, colleges, Library and Archives Canada, provincial archives, music conservatories, orchestra and radio libraries, the Canadian Music Centre, the Canadian National Institute for the Blind and public libraries. In its submission to the national copyright consultation, CAML made its position on digital locks clear:

Circumvention of TPMs should only be illegal when the circumvention is for infringing purposes.

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, Canadian Association of Law Libraries, Federation Etudiante Universitaire du Quebec


  1. Hi
    I just want to introduce Studio Helper. It help manage your staff and students in a smoother and easier way. It helps manage and track of their performance. Give it a try today! You’re free to play around with it as much as you like during your free trial.

  2. “Circumvention of TPMs should only be illegal when the circumvention is for infringing purposes.”

    That’s pretty much the consensus of almost every organization that we’ve heard anything from. The Conservatives are really the only ones that are stubbornly refusing to compromise on this single issue.

    Are they concerned that if they were to compromise on that point, then opponents would ask for additional compromises? While we have seen a handful of other objections to C-11, its digital lock provisions and the anti-circumvention prohibitions seem to be key.

    Is there anything left for Canadians to do but watch and wait to see what happens? What if one’s riding is not conservative, and already opposed to C-11 anyways?

  3. @Mark
    An important task for you is educating others. Do you have friends and/or relatives living in conservative ridings? Bring it up with them, and explain what that means in terms of ripping music to their iPods, setting up a home theatre PC, etc. I saw a picture the other day of a mini-PC that was just a big bigger than a CD jewel case (it did not have an internal HD). This is what you should be able to have in your living room, connected to your TV, with (amongst other things) *every* DVD you ever bought on it. C-11 will stop that from happening (legally).

  4. @Byte
    Nobody else that I personally know seems to really care. While the ability to copy their own property for personal use or format shifting, nobody that I know personally seems to see this law impacting their actual ability to accomplish it… only, at best, their ability to accomplish it within the framework of the law. Not so much because they don’t care about the law, per se, but because, pursuant to normal human behaviour, people don’t typically follow laws that they believe are actually unfair (if they did, there would still be racial segregation on buses, for instance).

  5. TPMs that prevent fair use should be illegal.

    Of course the real solution to this madness would be to abolish copyright once for all. 🙂

  6. Best Assoc of Copyright Owners says:

    We don’t need no libraries, archives nor documentation centers. This is communism! Even worse than open source software! They are stealing from starving artists! Destroying revenue streams! How could we feed our children if our work is made available for free to everyone with a library card!

    Abolish libraries! Burn the archives! Encrypt the documents!

    Sorry folks, it’s just business. We have to act in the best interest of our shareholders.

  7. @Mark
    I concur with your observation; I’m trying to make them care – laws put in place now set the legal baseline and will affect their children and their childrens’ children too; besides that it’s a noose that will only be tightened later.

    Regarding the racial segregation, I always try to refrain from sensitive analogies as opponents will attack the analogy itself and not the point made, but since you brought it up:

    Blanket TPM anti-circumvention provisions are like telling Rosa Parks that she is now granted the right by law to go on the bus and sit anywhere she likes… except if the driver of the bus chooses not to open the door, and defending this by saying that this is fair because she has the option to walk.

  8. @Napalm
    While I’m a big supported of the Public Domain, I can’t agree with abolishing copyright altogether. Why not? I have, as a consumer, two in my opinion *conflicting* interests: 1. a constant flow of new, interesting, quality material and 2. access to ALL material ever created that I could possibly be interested in at any time, at the lowest possible cost.

    Without copyright, I see little possibility for investors to recoup cost made to create the content. So unless you’re happy with the quality of material that’s on – but you have access to that now – what business model do you see? Any kind of advertising will be removed. Any kind of levy to be re-distributed; look at the crap $0.99 e-books for Kindle that Amazon is trying to crack down on – we will see thousands of new “creators” interested in a piece of that yummie pie by churning out “art” and holding up their hand.

    Note that I don’t care about “artists’ rights to determine what is being done with their work” – they should have kept it in their Moms’ basements. You publish it, it’s out there. If you’re a pacifist and create some music and at one point after the copyright expired General Atomics uses it to promote a newer iteration of a UAV; tough. You *published* it, it’s public, and once public domain everyone knows you can do whatever you want with it, so the work is no longer tied to the creator in the sense of “endorsement” like it is now.
    Changing a work around a bit and attaching my own name to it, without any credit to the original creator, is already taken care of and is called plagiarism.

    I support copyright purely as an economic tool, in the sense that copyright terms should be based on economic arguments. Creators that wish to earn a pension should use some of their earnings to invest in RRSPs etc., just like the average Joe (wanting to have their children and grandchildren also “collect”, I won’t even touch).

    Dr. Rufus Pollock, recently renewed Shuttleworth Foundation Fellow, once determined the optimal copyright term to be 14 years; lots of interesting articles here and a few must-reads for frequenters of this forum:

  9. 1452 – The first public library opens in Cesena, Italy

    1653 – The first British public library opens in Manchester

    1709 – The Queen enacts the Copyright Act

    1798 – The first Canadian public library opens in Montreal

    2011 – Canada prepares to destroy its public libraries through a submarine provision (regarding “TPM”) in its copyright law

  10. @Byte:

    I know. But if you’d have to chose between C-11 (with TPM provisions) and no copyright law at all, what would you do?

    You can only realize the abomination that C-11 is only when trying to craft something equally “extremist” in the opposite direction.

    TPM – full control by publisher
    abolish – no control by publisher

  11. Napalm, suggesting that abolishing copyright is somehow the opposite of TPM’s is like suggesting that outlawing automobiles is the opposite of legislation that requires all new cars be 100% electric (we’re getting there, by the way… give it another decade or so… but I digress, and I’d rather not get into that here).

    If anything, abolishing copyright would be the opposite of abolishing public domain.

  12. @Nap
    I know what you’re saying: if you are trying to find the middle ground, and one party already starts negotiations already at the middle ground, the end result will be somewhere between the middle ground and the other party’s extreme.
    True copyright reform should not be the result of negotiations between “the rights-holders” and those who purport to represent “the public”. We don’t negotiate the posted speed limit on highways either.

    Fact is that the switch from analog (copies degraded, 20th generation would be worthless) to digital (copies are perfect, 20th generation is as pristine as the 1st) combined with the personal computing/Internet revolution in publishing (“*you* tube” sums that one up perfectly) changed the way the public is able to, and actually deals with (copyrighted) content.

    What is the problem? Perfectly replicable digital content? The Internet connecting 2 billion people (*)? Those people themselves? The answer then is even more drastic and restrictive laws to whip them back in the place they belong? That is what rights holders would like you to think.

    I believe it’s more likely the problem is with copyright law itself.

    Fortunately, political parties taking hold under the Pirate Party International umbrella that are realizing this publicly. Unfortunately for us, this is for now only relevant to real democracies (as in: proportional representation), but the Green parties are starting to convert to their camp as well, not only in European Parliament but also right here at home:

    12 years something you can live with?


  13. While the pirate party actually does seem to have some respectable platforms on several issues (copyright being only one of them, and is how I came to have first heard of them), it’s my own opinion that they need to cultivate a more mature approach to politics if they wish to be taken genuinely seriously by more than just a very tiny group of people that will actually take the time to discover what they are really about. A name like “pirate party” sounds like something an 8-year old would come up because they think it sounds cool, and simply isn’t something that most people are ever going to take seriously.

    That might be judging a book by its cover… but guess what? That’s what people do.

    Of course, there may be the concern that if they ever did change their name to convey a more respectable outward image, that this might somehow be compromising (or indicative of an upcoming compromise) on their actual core values. Of course, that’s nothing more than judging a book by its cover as well.

  14. @Anon
    At first sight “pirate party” might sound immature (at least it’s not spelled “Pir8 Partee”) but so would “Apple Computer” or even “Green Party”. All they have to do is work on their branding; this will take money and lots of volunteers. Passing out free T-shirts outside a gaming convention you have rented a booth but then banned from is an example of such an opportunity (PP Sweden).
    Pirate Party is an example of reappropriation: people who infringe copyrights were called pirates, so they took this as a badge of honour. The name is fine as long as they can get the word out. In Halifax, NS there’s a pub called “Your Father’s Moustache” – would you eat there? Do you expect facial hair to show up in your finger food? Getting your brand properly positioned is priority #1, and at least in Canada the pirate party has failed to do so.

    Pirate Parties allow ordinary voters to make a point to the establishment *on those specific issues*. What the Greens are doing in European Parliament: formally adopt (in a position paper) the Pirate Party’s main platform issues and then hope that current PP voters will vote for them instead dilutes this a bit, there’s no telling whether it’s the environmental or the “digital” issues that attracted votes.

  15. You say it’s an example of repropriation…. there may be some truth to that, but to me it’s more like an attempt at repropriation that isn’t actually working. You can’t make a term referring to something that is illegal acceptable on a wide enough scale to affect voting outcomes the law first changing so that it isn’t illegal in the first place. It raises the immediate question then, does the pirate party want piracy to be legal? Their platforms never explicitly say so, but with a name like what they have, it’s sure as heck strongly implied.

    Even at best, how a political party is named has always, in practice, reflected that party’s principle agenda. Green party is called so because they have a distinct positive environmental approach, for example. With a name like pirate party, it sounds like their agenda is nothing less than anarchy… a wholly unsuitable approach for any serious contender for office in this country.

    Again, I’m fully aware that such impressions are largely based on outward appearances… but as you said, it’s about marketing. Naming is a part of that, and if the people who are leading the pirate party don’t face up to that fact, they have about the same chance of actually being taken seriously by voters in this country as the Rhino Party.