Last week, the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage rushed through the clause-by-clause review of Bill C-11 in a manner that should not be forgotten or normalized. Despite the absence of any actual deadline, the government insisted that just three two hour sessions be allocated to full clause-by-clause review of the bill. Once the government-imposed deadline arrived at 9:00 pm, the committee moved to voting on the remaining proposed amendments without any debate, discussion, questions for department officials, or public disclosure of what was being voted on. This week’s Law Bytes podcast features clips from a hearing that one Member of Parliament described as “an affront to democracy”.
The Law Bytes Podcast, Episode 131: The Bill C-11 Clause-by-Clause Review – What “An Affront to Democracy” Sounds Like
The Law Bytes Podcast, Episode 130: In Their Own Words – What the Canadian Heritage Committee Heard About Bill C-11 Harms
The debate over Bill C-11 – the Online Streaming Act – seems likely to come to an end this week, at least in the House of Commons. Last week, the government introduced a motion to put an end to committee debate and set tight timelines for any further review or discussion. Before it becomes forgotten, this week’s Law Bytes podcast is devoted to the House committee hearings on the bill with clips from a wide range of digital creators, interest groups, and independent experts on the potential Bill C-11 harms to user content.
The episode features (in order of appearance): CRTC Chair Ian Scott, Canadian Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez, Morghan Fortier, Oorbee Roy, Justin Tomchuk, JJ McCullough, Jeanette Patel, Scott Benzie, Patrick Rogers, Matt Hatfield, Michael Geist, Rachael Thomas, John Lewis, Stephane Cardin, Monica Auer.
The Law Bytes Podcast, Episode 129: Farhan Mohamed and Jeff Elgie on Why Canadian Independent News Publishers Want the Government to Fix the Online News Act
In the two months since the Online News Act was introduced it has received limited coverage and sparked little debate. Last week, Bill C-18 began to attract attention as over 125 small and medium sized Canadian publishers began to sound the alarm, calling on the government to fix the bill by addressing concerns around fairness and transparency. Farhan Mohamed of Overstory Media and Jeff Elgie of Village Media are two of Canada’s most successful and innovative local digital publishers, operating in dozens of communities across Canada. Both signed onto the initiative and join the Law Bytes podcast to discuss their business models, relationships with the Internet platforms, and concerns with the Online News Act.
The Law Bytes Podcast, Episode 128: Morghan Fortier on Why Canada’s Most Successful Youtube Streaming Company is Worried About Bill C-11
Last week, the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage started its hearings on the Online Streaming Act with the first of four day-long sessions it has planned for witnesses. Morghan Fortier, the co-founder and CEO of Skyship Entertainment, stole the show that day with insights that demand to be heard. Her company may not be a household name, but it is Canada’s leading Youtube streaming service with millions of subscribers worldwide and billions of views. She joins the Law Bytes podcast to talk about her company, the challenges and opportunities for Canadians in online streaming, and her sector’s concerns with the government’s Bill C-11 legislative plans.
Last week, the government took another step toward copyright term extension in Canada, inserting extension provisions within Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland’s Budget Implementation Act bill. Despite recommendations from its own copyright review, students, teachers, librarians, and copyright experts to include a registration requirement for the additional 20 years of protection, the government chose to extend term without including protection to mitigate against the harms.
Lucie Guibault is an internationally renowned expert on international copyright law, a Professor of Law and Associate Dean at Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie University, and the Associate Director of the school’s Law and Technology Institute. Days before the release of the bill, she joined the Law Bytes podcast for a discussion on copyright term extension, its implications and the government’s implementation options.