Liberal Senators Take Last Shot At Copyright Bill’s Digital Lock Rules

The Senate is expected to conclude its debate on Bill C-11 with a vote later today. Yesterday, Liberal Senators who heard testimony at the Banking, Trade and Commerce committee brought forward a motion for three amendments to the bill. Senator Wilfrid Moore raises several concerns during debate, but brought a motion for three changes:

  1. Amend the digital lock rules to link circumvention to copyright infringement
  2. Remove the destruction of lessons requirement from the new distance learning exception
  3. Create limitations on the change to the ephemeral right provision involving broadcasters

While there was discussion during debate about fair dealing and network PVRs, no amendments on those issues were raised. The Liberal motion is expected to be defeated and the bill is almost certain to pass this afternoon.


  1. Alex Savulescu says:

    We lost, Canada lost…. The U.S. and its Canadian cronies won.
    Democracy, indeed, carries within itself the seeds of its own destruction.

  2. Not much sober second or other thought on the tory side of the senate
    So three eminently sensible amendments will go down the tube of party loyalty; no thought required.

  3. Adam …

    Marching orders are just that, how high sir?

  4. So..
    How long until someone tries to make part of the law unconstitutional since Digital locks without link is a provincial jurisdiction?

  5. ..
    At least we see another attempt to try to change this bill and from the Liberals of all people, I’m actually ashamed NDP didn’t try more even though they did get shot down many times before.

  6. @JDL

    In all fairness, the NDP did all they could,
    along with Elizabeth May to get the Cons to
    accept a number of amending proposals, which
    unsurprisingly were all shot down.

    With the Conservatives,it’s either their way,
    or no way. I didn’t vote for them, as I knew
    what we’d be in for once they got their majority.
    Needless to say, it’s going to be a long three years.

    There’s very little that stands in the way of
    a Con dictatorship. And the people who were naive
    enough to vote for them, didn’t forsee what was
    going to happen.

    Even the Libs would have done better than the Cons.
    Say what you will about past Liberal scandals. Not
    like the Cons ever had any themselves. There still isn’t
    any time I can remember where a Liberal federal government
    went against its own citizens, like the Cons are doing right now.

  7. Wait a tick
    The amendments are listed as being put forward by Senator Greene and Dawson. Dawson is a liberal but -Greene- is actually a Conservative. Could it be that the cons will try to claim credit for fixing the bill (after everyone else told them to?)

  8. ..
    This is what boggles my mind is that people still think they’re doing a great job because they’re passing all these bills and saying they’re getting things done unlike NDP or Liberals but if Liberals and NDP had a majority I’d believe they get bills passed also. Although I’m sure it would be done right and for the people, well.. at least that’s what I’d like to think.

  9. Michael Geist says:

    No. Greene (Conservative) put forward the motion to pass C-11 as is. Moore (Liberal) put forward the motion to amend. The bill will pass in the same form as approved by the House of Commons just after 5:30 today.

  10. Craig,
    Yesterday Geist (our very own version of looney Lessig)told everyone that the Bill was headed for Royal Assent today!, that didn’t happen.
    The day before no amendments were discussed, that too was false.
    Wait for the truth Craig, it won’t be much longer.

  11. LOL
    Ya Dan all I read is Bill c-11 has passed, can’t trust articles always best to see where it goes for yourself but to be fair Giest hasn’t been all wrong.

  12. @ML – and certainly hasn’t been all right either!

  13. So, do I have to resurrect my 100 DVD player?
    Since all DVDs are locked presumably this means format shifting is illegal and having a media server will be outlawed?

    If I’m right, have the Conservatives sent Canadians back a couple of decades in media technology?

    Then again, maybe I have it all wrong.


  14. I wonder why the papers are not reporting about this. Try searching The Province or the Sun. Nothing about Bill C-11. Way to inform Canadians about getting shafted but a corrupt gov. that listens more to foreign interests than its own citizens.

  15. Ahh, thanks for the correction
    Right, thank you very much for clearing that up to me. Well, I’ve seen a few articles saying Order in Council will take a few months. I guess we have that going for us? Either way, it’s a dark day for Canadians… though I do like the education provisions of C-11. The realistic person in me tells me that while the TPM measures are horrible, there are some parts the Conservatives got right, and like you said in your article earlier, we can take heart in the victories we did win.

  16. @end user
    They got payed off not to say anything, Gov. doesn’t need the same mistake they did with C-30.

  17. I remain convinced that the phrase “linking circumvention to infringement” is, as I’ve said elsewhere, problematic. While I fully understand the intent behind it is to try to make it so that circumvention is *NOT* a crime unless it is accompanied by some actual form of real copyright infringement, I am very concerned that expressing it too tersely could result in somebody who advocates this bill deciding to deliberately twist the meaning from what is intended, and put forth an amendment that would *MAKE* circumvention an actual copyright violation.

  18. @Mark.. They wouldn’t need an ammendment for that, thats how it is now.. Circumvention is an infringment, even for legitimate purposes. Thats what the U.S. corps want, and what they got.

  19. C-11 pass
    Well that’s it, it’s all done now C-11 just passed Senate! The order in council which will be done is that over the summer or will they do that after the break?

  20. C-11 Pass
    A dark day
    It could very well be in the next 10 minutes with the way it’s been going. All it needs now is a signature.

  21. ….

    I just transferred my CD to my ipod, OH MAN AM I BAD ASS I BROKE THE LAW!

  22. @Craig
    You were absolutely correct! LOL what bullshit!

  23. Junji Hiroma says:

    Bill C11 is Now Law Of The Land
    Brazeau has been Cheerleading for Harper,I guess Moore is too for the Copywrong Bill being passed.
    Your PS3 is NOW Illegal

  24. Conservatives last majority
    The Conservatives, speeding ever faster into an uncertain past, remain committed to the principals of do whatever people with money ask for.

  25. one possible silver lining:
    maybe this will make canadians take bill c-30 seriously. yes, these a**holes really would do that to this country.

  26. @Doug Webb

    Don’t be shocked if the Cons get another
    minority or majority when Harper’s current
    term is over. Why?

    Unless the Cons rub everyone in society the
    wrong way ex. the elderly, lower and upper
    middle class(majority of these probably voted
    Con)new Canadians( look like they’ve already
    done that with Bill C-38) etc etc.

    The wealthy have nothing to lose, but luckily
    there are still more ordinary people out there
    than rich corporate owners of companies.

    I’d like to know how many people who voted
    Conservative last election, have already
    decided they won’t next election. Some
    people are pretty set in their ways, being
    staunch Consevatives, Libs, New Democrat
    what have you.

    Will having Stephen Harper’s Govt rule
    alleviate Con voters fear of the NDP
    putting too much money into social
    programs, or that they’re incapable
    of governing Canada as a federal
    party? They could do no worse
    than what’s being done to Canada
    at the present time.

  27. You may be right, I may be crazy …

    Until the left leaning vote unifies under one banner like the cons did I’m afraid you are correct. If the left can get their act together then they will steamroll over the cons. Will we be any better off then? Some ways yes, others maybe not. Hopefully in the next election the stand that opposition parties took on IP issues will remain.

    It may be too late at that point if the terms are locked into greater agreements like the TPP, which is why it is important to oppose them now.

  28. @Crockett

    Ahh, the Billy Joel song! Love it!

    I think we also have to hope the Liberals
    can bring their party back up again, as well.
    Even they wouldn’t have been as autocratic in
    their Govt, as the Cons are trying to be.

    Stephen Harper is so adamant to be up the
    US politician’s butt’s. He reminds me a lot
    of Mulrooney in that regard. I agree that
    we have to have good relations with the
    USA, but he just let’s it go way too far.
    Then again, Brian Mulrooney and Stephen
    Harper’s govt are pretty much one in the

    And, to no surprise, Harper had also
    been chatting with Mulrooney recently.
    Like Richard Nixon, we all know Mulrooney
    wasn’t ” a crook” lol

  29. RE: Crockett
    “Until the left leaning vote unifies under one banner like the cons did I’m afraid you are correct.”

    Of course, if the Liberals/NDP did merge, then we would have the exact same political layout as the States does. And we know how that’s working out… I think a two-party system is certainly *not* the answer.

  30. Connor Behan says:

    Sad day indeed
    Exactly – we are damned either way. If the Liberals and NDP merge, they will take a great deal of choice away from Canadians and show everyone that the parties on the left play the same dirty tricks as the right. However, if they don’t merge, the Cons are going to keep winning.

    Personally, I don’t think things will get better until Stephen Harper retires. If the next CPC leader is ex-PC instead of ex-Reform then the party will have no choice but to stop screwing people over if it wants to stay together.

  31. Crockett says:

    @Gord “I think a two-party system is certainly *not* the answer.”

    Perhaps we should give proportional representation a try? Although I’m not certain that system has been much of a benefit where its been implemented either. I think the Internet has great potential to be a political ‘equalizer’ if handled well, and the kiddies (anonymous etc.) go home.

  32. C-11, UEFI and Linux
    Can anyone comment on what will happen now that new computers labeled as “certified for Windows 8” – especially those with ARM processors – must have UEFI secure boot enabled, and that it’s nearly impossible to install Linux on such machines without using a Microsoft-approved key? Will C-11 make it illegal to disable UEFI Secure Boot on such PCs in Canada? See the Free Software Foundation’s comments on Secure Boot here:

  33. Sun and coalition
    They don’t need to merge. I disagree with almost every recent Canadian federal government decision, however Harper does have a nack for uniting people underneath him. Unity was the only way the cons could win because they never had enough right wing support in parliament to get a coalition minority. Too much in fighting. If they NDP and Liberals managed to independently get right wing voters to vote for them, then we could have a very useful minority government led by the party with the second most seats. Strange, but Canada is cool like that. Two party system means that the companies only need to pay off two sellouts. The NDP rise was fun because i’m sure alot of these corps did not have any money invested in NDP hacks. They’re everywhere though.

    Oh, and calling our government may the Harper government may seem like a great way to distance the country from this government, but in actuality it just creates a false sense of irresponsibility. We’re a country, even if we did not vote for them, they’re still our official. It does re-inforce the idea that the prime minister is the be all end all guy though, which as much as he wants to be, he’s not. Parties have replaced prime ministers in office before. He’s not a president, he’s there to guide, not preside.

  34. forgot the sun part
    The Sun is owned be Quebecor who are pro copyright restrictions. When the first song lawsuites came to Canada, they actually released a letter in support.

  35. Disappointed with new bill
    I voted for the Conservatives last time because I am, for the most part, fundamentally opposed to the freewheeling spending habits of those on the left. That said, this bill, amongst others, is making me less and less impressed. This isn’t the Conservative government I want. It’s not that they’re pro-big business (that’s largely the arena of the Liberals), but they’re caving to foreign pressures, both American (which, itself, doesn’t worry me too much as our two countries have, for the most part, common interests) and Chinese (which does scare the bejeebers out of me). What I don’t like, is our national policy being directed by foreign ENTERTAINMENT companies – this is utterly stupid! Stupid and not in the interests of ANY Canadian – rich or poor, black, white or native. The copyright act does need to be modified, but all countries around the world are being pressured to adopt a USA DMCA-style reform (it’s not just us that got this particular shaft). I gather it’s so we can buy a copy of Transformers at our local Walmart rather than having to try to import it from the USA. I think our politicos are simply running scared and saying Yessir, rather than realizing that, if the world held up a big middle finger to the USA copyright act, American studios would have no choice but to relent (they’d lose the majority of their market).

    So, I don’t think I’m voting Conservative next time around. I certainly won’t vote for the Liberals (not unless they can do a complete 180 turnaround, dump their current stock of old boys and load the party with fresh faces and fresh, new ideas – that make sense and aren’t nutjob ripoffs) or the NDP or God-forbid, the Greens, so I’ll probably have to look toward whichever protest party is running in my area.

    Politics anywhere these days is very disappointing: the current crop of puppets (from ALL parties) offer nothing to inspire hope or the desire to follow. Stephen Harper is a good leader (whether you think his ideas are right or wrong, he’s got people motivated to follow him) but, in the wings of the Conservative party, I see noone to step up and take over, nor do I see any such talent in the other two major parties. And the Americans are even worse off with Obama and Romney being the best they can prop up?!? Very very sad. I’m going back to work now.