CRIA's Graham Henderson was in Ottawa today together with several other music groups to make their case for immediate copyright reform. Perhaps responding to the recent masthead editorials in the Vancouver Sun and National Post, the group met with the Ottawa Citizen's editorial board which has posted an MP3 version of the conversation. While there are some shots at me (counterfactual information?) and the obligatory distribution of Barry Sookman's attack on me and the Facebook group, there are two story lines that are worth noting (in addition to the ironic use of the CMCC's Feist as the Canadian artist example and the weak response to the Privacy Commissioner of Canada's concerns).
The first is that there is a great deal of common ground between what Henderson, CIRPA's Duncan McKie and the other attendees want and the Fair Copyright for Canada principles. Henderson and McKie both indicate that they have no intention of launching file sharing lawsuits, which should make the changes to the statutory damages provisions relatively non-contentious (though not a big win for users either). More importantly, several people in the room say they want WIPO, not the DMCA. That can be consistent with the Fair Copyright for Canada principles – linking anti-circumvention legislation to copyright infringement, avoiding a ban on devices that can be used to circumvent, and distribution as part of the making available right are all consistent with WIPO implementation.
While that is the good news, the second big story – which can easily be missed if you aren't paying attention – should send a chill down the spine of millions of Canadians.