Post Tagged with: "conservatives"

Why Canada’s Fair Dealing Rules May Impede Free Speech: The Conservative Ads, the CBC, and Copyright

This week the Conservative party began airing a series of ads criticizing the opposition, including three that included short video clips from a CBC program.  The CBC has objected to the use of the footage, stating that its material should not be used in partisan advertising and noting that the Conservatives did not ask for permission to use the clip.  The Conservative party has responded by arguing that the use is covered by fair dealing and that no permission was needed.  According to the Fred DeLorety, the director of communications for the party, “It’s free speech. It’s free use.” To support its position, the Conservatives point to the use of a similar clip by C-SPAN in the United States under its fair use rules.  The argument seems to be that if it is fair use in the U.S., surely it is fair use (or dealing) in Canada (Stephen Taylor makes the same point in criticizing the CBC for not having a better grasp of fair use).

The problem with this argument is that is mistakenly presumes that the U.S. fair use provision covers the same ground as Canadian fair dealing.  It doesn’t.  Indeed, this is precisely why many have argued for a flexible fair dealing provision, which unfortunately is not found in current Copyright Act or in Bill C-32.

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January 19, 2011 32 comments News

UK Conservatives Promise 100 Mbps Broadband By 2017

The UK Conservatives have promised 100 Mbps broadband service to the majority of homes in the country by 2017.

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February 1, 2010 1 comment News

Conservatives Reverse on Watering Down Anti-Spam Bill

The Conservatives reversed course on plans to water down Bill C-27 in an aborted clause-by-clause meeting today that promises another 48 hours of intense lobbying on the anti-spam bill.  Parliamentary Secretary Mike Lake opened this afternoon's meeting by putting the Government's proposed changes into the public record. Most notably, the […]

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October 19, 2009 4 comments News

Conservative MPs Voice Support For Fee-For-Carriage

As the CRTC gears up for yet another round of hearings later this fall that will address the fee-for-carriage issue, the most recent batch of submitted comments contains what may constitute an interesting shift in policy by the Conservatives.  Earlier this year, the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage conducted extensive hearings on the future of local broadcasting.  Fee-for-carriage (ie. a requirement for broadcast distributors such as cable and satellite to pay for retransmission of over-the-air signals) figured prominently in the discussion.  The Conservative members of the committee issued a dissenting opinion in the final report and offered up the following:

this dissenting report must now indicate our most fervent and rigorous opposition to any potential fee for carriage system, either negotiated or imposed, that would have a detrimental effect on the consumer.  We believe it is fundamentally unfair to expect Canadian consumers to pay new and substantial charges each month to their cable or satellite distributor to reflect such a system. 

Fast forward several months later and Conservative MPs Ed Holder (London West), Laurie Hawn (Edmonton Centre), Bruce Stanton (Simcoe North), Patrick Brown (Barrie), Gord Brown (Leeds-Grenville), and Lois Brown (Newmarket-Aurora) have each submitted comments to the CRTC public hearing process on the issue.  Each MP sent roughly the same letter, suggesting that they all come from the same playbook.  The new message:

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September 16, 2009 21 comments News

C-SPAN Says It Won’t Sue Conservatives Over Ignatieff Footage

The Ottawa Citizen reports that the U.S. public affairs network C-SPAN has said that it will not sue the Conservatives over the use of its footage in the recent ads targeting Michael Ignatieff.

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May 29, 2009 5 comments News