Podcasts

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The Law Bytes Podcast, Episode 161: Canadian Chamber of Commerce President Perrin Beatty on Why the Government’s Bill C-18 Motion Establishes a Dangerous, Undemocratic Precedent

Bill C-18, the online news bill whose foundation is mandated payments for links, has unsurprisingly sparked reaction from Google and Facebook that raises the possibility of stopping linking to Canadian news. In an act of obvious retribution, the government responded to the companies response with a motion from Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage Chris Bittle that demanded a wide range of internal and external documents dating back years and even looped in the private correspondence of companies, NGOs, journalists and potentially of thousands of Canadians. At committee, Liberal MP Anthony Housefather introduced a motion that removed some of the most problematic elements, but still left in place what is best described as a fishing expedition. 

Perrin Beatty is a former Cabinet Minister under Prime Ministers Clark and Mulroney, was named President of the CBC by Jean Chretien, and is now the President and CEO of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce. His members are split in their views of Bill C-18, but not on the motion at Heritage committee. He joins the Law Bytes podcast to discuss the concerns with the motion and the dangerous precedent it sets. 

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March 27, 2023 1 comment Podcasts
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The Law Bytes Podcast, Episode 160: Peter Carrescia on Why Patents Won’t Solve Canada’s Innovation Problem

In recent years, there has been growing effort to link longstanding concerns about Canadian innovation with patents. The argument – which has crossed into Canada’s strategy around AI – posits that the road to an innovative economy is inextricably linked to a greater emphasis on intellectual property and in particular on patents. But what if the correlation between patents and innovation is weak at best? What if an emphasis on patents may actually be harmful to startups whose attention and resources is better placed elsewhere?

Peter Carrescia is a successful innovator and investor who recently wrote a Globe and Mail op-ed that raises precisely these issues, warning that “creating policy that pushes patents regardless of area or company stage and gauges success by counting patents is misguided and, in fact, dangerous to the success of startups.” He joins the Law Bytes podcast to talk about his experience and concerns with direction of government policy that may be mistaking an IP policy for an innovation one.

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March 20, 2023 4 comments Podcasts
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The Law Bytes Podcast, Episode 159: Fenwick McKelvey on the Rapid Spread of Government TikTok Bans

TikTok may be enormously popular, but according to the growing number of government, there are concerns regarding links between the app and the Chinese government. That has led to a rapid spread bans of the TikTok app on government devices not only at the federal level, but at provincial and municipal governments and even at universities for university-owned devices. But is TikTok unique in this regard? How to reconcile the government’s insistence that TikTok contribute to Cancon in Bill C-11 with it banning the app due to security risks? Are the privacy concerns more about TikTok or the government’s inaction on privacy reform?

Fenwick McKelvey is an Associate Professor in Information and Communication Technology Policy in the Department of Communication Studies at Concordia University and the co-director of the Applied AI Institute. He returns to the Law Bytes podcast to talk about the TikTok bans, the state of Canadian policy in addressing the concerns, and why we may be heading for more geo-political battles over digital policy.

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March 13, 2023 5 comments Podcasts
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The Law Bytes Podcast, Episode 158: In Their Own Words – Ministers, MPs, Senators and Government Officials on Bill C-18

Bill C-18, the Online News Act, has been at the centre of growing firestorm in Canada following reports that Google has begun testing the removal of links to Canadian news services for a small percentage of its users. The issue is headed to the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage later today with MPs likely to take turns berating Google executives. If you’re just catching up or don’t understand what the fuss is about, this Law Bytes podcast is for you. While the government tries to spin the bill as a big win for media of all sizes without concerns for the Internet, the reality is far different. But you don’t have to take my word for it. This podcast episode features clips of what Ministers, MPs, Senators, and government officials have already said at committee or in the Senate about the bill.

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March 6, 2023 5 comments Podcasts
The Law Bytes Podcast, Episode 157: Stephen Spong on the “Goblin Mode Gaslighting” of Canadian Copyright and Fair Dealing

The Law Bytes Podcast, Episode 157: Stephen Spong on the “Goblin Mode Gaslighting” of Canadian Copyright and Fair Dealing

Last week was Fair Dealing Week, a chance for a wide range of Canadians – educators, students, librarians, archivists, and creators – to celebrate the important role that fair dealing plays in facilitating both fair access and fair compensation to copyrighted works. I ran a series of posts on Canadian education, fair dealing and copyright that will continue into the coming week. This week’s Law Bytes podcast episode is part of that series as I’m joined by Stephen Spong, the director of the John and Dotsa Bitove law library and copyright officer at Western University. Spong used fair dealing week to write a piece that appeared in multiple press venues to lament what he termed “goblin mode gaslighting on copyright” and he joins me on the podcast to talk about fair dealing in practice, the ongoing policy debate, and the meaning of goblin mode gaslighting.

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February 27, 2023 6 comments Podcasts