#closetlefty No.1, Nov 2, 2011: "Never Miss A Good Crisis" by Anna Lena Schiller (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) https://flic.kr/p/aBitkE

Episode 26: There Is No Crisis – Dwayne Winseck on the State of Canadian Communications, Media and Cultural Policy

The future of Canadian communications law has emerged as political hot potato in recent weeks with political parties engaged in finger pointing over who is acting – or failing to act – on issues closely aligned to cultural policy. Just prior to the election call, Dwayne Winseck, a professor at Carleton who has been one of Canada’s most prominent experts on communications and cultural policy, joined the podcast to provide his take on the initial report from the Broadcasting and Telecommunications Legislative Review Panel, the tech-lash against companies such as Google and Facebook, and what the numbers tell us about the state of media and advertising in Canada.

Read more ›

October 7, 2019 0 comments
Broadband in a Box by Alan Levine (CC0 1.0) https://flic.kr/p/ZhwmCY

Ep. 25: The CRTC Decision on Competitive Internet Pricing: A Conversation with George Burger

Last month, Canada’s telecom regulator, the CRTC, issued its final decision in a lengthy battle over the rates that independent Internet providers pay for wholesale access to the broadband networks run by big incumbents such as Bell and Rogers. The Commission slashed previous rates and made its decision retroactive, an approach that sparked anger and lawsuits from the incumbents who are now in Canadian courts seeking to overturn the ruling and stop it from taking effect. Meanwhile, several Canadian independent ISPs wasted no time in responding to the decision, dropping their consumer prices and neatly illustrating the impact of lower rates and more competition. George Burger, one of the founders of vMedia and a frequent commentator on Canadian telecom issues, joined me on the podcast to discuss the decision and the state of competition for Canadian Internet services.

Read more ›

September 23, 2019 8 comments
Ian Kerr, https://techlaw.uottawa.ca/news/ian-kerr-2019

Episode 24: A Tribute to Ian Kerr

The first episode of the new season of the Lawbytes podcast is dedicated to my good friend and colleague Ian Kerr, a giant in the law and technology field, who passed away on August 27th after battling complications arising from cancer. Ian’s generosity, warmth, and good humour touched the lives of thousands of people. Whether national privacy commissioners or first-year law students, he made time for everyone, offering encouragement, insight, and a deeply held view that everyone had an opportunity and responsibility to help shape our collective digital future. The Faculty of Law plans to celebrate Ian in an event scheduled for Friday, September 27th at 11:30 am. There is also an Ian R. Kerr Memorial Fund that will support scholarships, fellowships, activities and initiatives honouring his legacy.

Read more ›

September 16, 2019 9 comments
Piracy Point by Ted & Dani Percival (CC BY 2.0) https://flic.kr/p/6FEST5

Episode 23: The WIPO BRIP Database – Rick Shera on the MEGA Experience and the Dangers of False IP Claims

The last episode of Season One of the Lawbytes podcast (new episodes will resume in September) returns to WIPO, the World Intellectual Property Organization and its proposed BRIP database. The BRIP database, which stands for Building Respect for Intellectual Property, will be a database of allegedly infringing websites. While some of the details remain sketchy, the basics are that BRIP will be a database of allegedly infringing websites that could be used by advertisers to stop advertising on those sites, payment providers to stop service, or even site blocking initiatives to mandate ISP blocking. Yet the BRIP database currently envisions the possibility of lobby groups such as the movie and music associations inserting sites in the database with no oversight, no review, and not even any transparent standards.

That approach caught the attention of Rick Shera, a lawyer in New Zealand with Lowndes Jordan and one of that country’s leading IP and Internet law experts. Rick posted a Twitter stream on the risks associated with false IP accusations, speaking from the experience of one of his clients. He joins me on the podcast this week to discuss the experience of MEGA and the risks of false IP claims.

Read more ›

August 6, 2019 1 comment
Episode 22: Navigating Intermediary Liability for the Internet – A Conversation with Daphne Keller

Episode 22: Navigating Intermediary Liability for the Internet – A Conversation with Daphne Keller

The question of what responsibility should lie with Internet platforms for the content they host that is posted by their users has been the subject of debate around in the world as politicians, regulators, and the broader public seek to navigate policy choices to combat harmful speech that have implications for freedom of expression, online harms, competition, and innovation. To help sort through the policy options, Daphne Keller, the Director of Intermediary Liability at Stanford’s Center for Internet and Society, joins the podcast this week. She recently posted an excellent article on the Balkinization blog that provided a helpful guide to intermediary liability law making and agreed to chat about how policy makers can adjust the dials on new rules to best reflect national goals.

Read more ›

July 29, 2019 3 comments