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March 10, 2012

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» An update on bill C-11 : an act to legally protect infringements of technology property rights.

The following is the letter I sent today to my MP in Ottawa South. Please send letters to ensure your MPs are aware of your views, given committee moved to clause-by-clause on Monday. This is when we will learn what amendments will be tabled by each party, and the debate on whether bill C-11 will become better or worse will start.

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» fear v. education

Meera Nair posted a great article about misinformation on fair dealings.

"It is disappointing to read of the continued distortion of fair dealing through the call to action of The Writers’ Union of Canada and Access Copyright. But I am not surprised; it is much easier to provoke fear than to embark upon the longer journey of educating people."

March 9, 2012

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Pro-infringement lawyers smear Canadian Bar Association (CBA)

By now many will have heard about the campaign by a group of lawyers to smear the Canadian Bar Association (CBA), making allegations about the process that was used to create a submission to government on Bill C-32 (now C-11).

Since he was directly mentioned as part of the smear campaign, Law professor Michael Geist has responded (National Post, his website). How you interpret these events partly come down to a matter of trust, and I believe we should afford far more trust to Mr. Geist clarity than the misdirection from these specific lawyers. (Update: Andrew Bernstein — Chair, CBA Intellectual Property Section responded)

The participants in this smear campaign are lawyers whose customers are increasingly building business models upon infringing other peoples rights (See my brief to C-11 committee). These lawyers, sometimes registered as lobbiests and sometimes claiming to represent themselves, have been working to legalize and legally protect these infringements.

We should offer these lawyers the same level of respect and trust that they might lawyers or executives at organizations like ISOHunt or the Pirate Bay.

Notes: Howard Knopf has provided links to relevant articles and submissions.

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March 6, 2012

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Digital Locks have nothing to do with Copyright

I was interviewed by Jesse Brown for TVO Search Engine on Friday, and the MP3 of that interview is now available.

Note: Apologies for the sound quality at my end. I was at my workplace and we ended up using the microphone built into my tablet, which offered better sound than the external mic I use with my phone. Seems I need to buy a better microphone if I plan use VOIP on this tablet in the future.

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February 18, 2012

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Bill C-11 focus must be on our rights as technology owners, not creators or users of copyrighted works.

Our community hosts a few petitions to the federal parliament. Our first was the Petition for Users' Rights which we launched in 2004 during a Liberal government, and the second was the Petition to protect Information Technology property rights which was launched in 2006 soon after the Conservative government formed. At the time I thought protecting property rights was a non-brainer for a Conservative government, but it turns out that I was wrong. If we don't focus on our rights and interests as technology owners, this Conservative government will blindly trample our rights without even acknowledging us as legitimate stakeholders.

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February 13, 2012

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Eastern and Western censorship: which is worse?

No visit of the Canadian Prime Minister to China would be complete without western media commenting on China's censorship policy. Western governments also engage in censorship, and are willing to go to extreme lengths to enforce that censorship. Some of that censorship has been called for by the corporations who own the western mainstream media that has been critiquing China.

"He who is without sin among you, let him be the first to throw a stone at her."

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February 11, 2012

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Protecting the property, privacy and other rights of owners: Bill C-19 and Bill C-11

Given all the discussion about how the debate on Bill C-19 ended (Examples: Sheila Dabu Nonato for Postmedia News, Kady O'Malley for CBC) I decided to send Mr Larry Miller (MP for Bruce—Grey—Owen Sound) an email.

I will let fellow technology owners know if I get a reply.

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» Bill C-11 house debate day 9

On February 10, 2012 we had the 9th time when the House of Commons debated Bill C-11 (at Second Reading). The previous debate day was February 8, 2012.

This was the last day of debate before the bill is sent to committee at second reading. In some ways we have returned to the same position we were a little less than a year ago when the government fell in March 2011. In other ways it appears that the general public, who will be greatly impacted by this bill, are far more engaged than they were at that time.

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February 10, 2012

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Response from Minister Paradis to email about C-11

On the 21st September, I emailed the minister about C-11. I asked specifically why the government was making it illegal to bypass the region encoding to watch the DVDs I purchased in Europe here in Canada. Here's the response I received today.

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» Canadians rally for day of action against Bill C-11 (Internet Lockdown)

Press release below. See for more details.


For Immediate Release

Canadians rally for day of action against Bill C-11 (Internet Lockdown)

Public Outcry Heats up Against Legislation that threatens Internet Freedom

February 10, 2012 – Today, public outcry will grow to new proportions for what many are calling “the Internet Lockdown”. People across Canada plan to come together online and offline to rally against Bill C-11, known as the Copyright Modernization Act.

The Canadian public outcry comes in the wake of the fervor surrounding SOPA—a hotly contested copyright bill that millions of Americans and make websites like Wikipedia and reddit successfully came together to defeat.

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February 9, 2012

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Bill C-11 house debate day 8

On February 8, 2012 we had the 8th time when the House of Commons debated Bill C-11 (at Second Reading). The previous debate day was December 12, 2011.

The debate started with Hon. Peter Van Loan (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, CPC) moving a time allocation motion:

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February 6, 2012

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Is Bill C-11 related to SOPA/PIPA?

Probably the claim you will read most often in recent weeks from my friendly archvillain Jason J Kee on his twitter feed is that, There is NO COMPARISON b/t #C11 & SOPA. While he is playing with words when he makes this claim, I think it is useful to discuss the narrow way in which he is correct as well as the ways he is trying to distract people from the similarities.

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February 5, 2012

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Copyright restrictions must make sense for entire term of copyright

One of the other topics that my friendly archvillain Jason J Kee and I touched on via twitter on Friday was the term of copyright.

I remembered that when he was in front of the C-32 committee he claimed that the format shifting aspects of C-32 (Now C-11) didn't apply to video games. He started to make similar claims in our discussion, started by the claim that "by definition, software is never platform neutral", and later that there is "no reasonable consumer expectation to format shift games".

If you only consider the few months after a video game is released, when the most money is currently made by the game developer, Jason's suggestions my appear reasonable. Games tend to push the limits of the hardware they are designed for, and thus are tied to that hardware for the time when those limits still apply.

Unfortunately, the government granted monopoly of copyright last far more than a few months or a few years.

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February 4, 2012

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Targeting technology ownership rather than copyright infringement

The most extreme positions in the copyright debate tend to be expressed from anonymous or pseudonymous entities. Whether it is the group officially calling themselves Anonymous, or the astroturf Balanced Copyright group, they will attack the property rights and/or copyright of others without the honesty of doing so under their real names as citizens.

There are exceptions, and it is far easier to have legitimate policy debates with engaged citizens. On the other side of the debate from where I stand are people like Barry Sookman and James Gannon from the law firm McCarthy Tétrault, John Degen as an individual author (Previously with PSAC), or Jason J Kee who is currently Director of Policy and Legal Affairs for the Entertainment Software Association of Canada (ESAC).

Of these the individual who expresses opinions furthest from my own is likely Jason J Kee.

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February 3, 2012

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Simcoe North MP Bruce Stanton on C-11

Copied from a post to the Fair Copyright for Canada Facebook group.



Good Afternoon Samuel:

Thank you for your recent correspondence on the Bill C-11, the Copyright Modernization Act. I appreciate your comments and concerns and welcome the opportunity to respond.

Bill C-11, The Copyright Modernization Act, is an effort to modernize Canada's copyright laws and align them with international standards on the use and sharing of creative material. Once implemented, the Bill will promote innovation and creativity in Canada's arts community. It is an attempt to ensure Canada can compete in the digital economy.

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» Response from Honourable Steven Fletcher on C-11

A familiar looking form letter copied from a post to the Fair Copyright for Canada Facebook group.



Good afternoon,

Minister Fletcher has asked me to respond to your email and thank you for taking the time to contact our office.

Recognizing the critical role a modern copyright regime plays in Canada’s digital economy, the Government of Canada is delivering on its commitment to introduce and seek swift passage of copyright legislation that balances the needs of creators and users.

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» Winnipeg South MP Rod Bruinooge on C-11

A familiar looking form letter copied from a post to the Fair Copyright for Canada Facebook group.



Hi [Constituent name]

Thank you for contacting our office regarding Bill C-11. Please accept my apologies for the delay in response.

Recognizing the critical role a modern copyright regime plays in Canada’s digital economy, the Government of Canada is delivering on its commitment to introduce and seek swift passage of copyright legislation that balances the needs of creators and users.

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» Reply from Nycole Turmel (+Copy of Charlie Angus reply) on C-11

Copied from a post to the Fair Copyright for Canada Facebook group.


Thank you for taking the time to write regarding Bill C-11, An Act to amend the Copyright Act. We appreciate having the benefit of your comments and the opportunity to let you know more about our work on a number of these legislative concerns.

New Democrats want updated copyright laws to balance the rights of artists, consumers and rights-holders. We believe that Canada needs effective legislation to ensure artists’ royalties are protected; long-distance education opportunities aren’t hindered; and that young people aren’t subject to unfair, expensive fines.

That’s why we will not be supporting Bill C-11 unless the government is willing to amend the digital lock provisions and restore royalty provisions for artists.

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February 1, 2012

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Cambridge MP Hon. Gary Goodyear, P.C. reply on C-11

Copied from a post to the Fair Copyright for Canada Facebook group.



Dear Ms. Gwynne,

Thank you for your recent correspondence regarding your concerns with The Copyright Modernization Act. I am always happy to respond to the questions and concerns of my constituents.

Recognizing the critical role a modern copyright regime plays in Canada’s digital economy, the Government of Canada is delivering on its commitment to introduce and seek swift passage of copyright legislation that balances the needs of creators and users.

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» Robert Chisholm's Response To constituent about Bill C-11

Copied from a post to the Fair Copyright for Canada Facebook group. Letter was to Jordan Landry.



Thank you for taking the time to email me with your concerns regarding Bill C-11 The Copyright Modernization Act.

Like many pieces of legislation currently tabled in the House of Commons there are parts of the bill that we support and parts that we oppose.

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