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May 16, 2011

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Science and Technology minister

A Hill Times article discussing the new cabinet included the following:

Insiders said last week as well that Industry Canada may be split into two departments, one focused on innovation and science and technology and the other remaining Industry, making way for a full Science and Technology minister, rather than a secretary of state

My first thought: about time.

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May 3, 2011

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» New shape of federal parliament and districts I watched closely

Saying this was an interesting election to watch would be an understatement. The Conservatives received the majority they asked for with 167(54.2%) seats, but that wasn’t the biggest story for me last night. The NDP is now the official opposition with 102 seats, the Liberals are down to 34 seats, the Bloc may fade out of existence having barely kept 4 seats, and Green party leader Elizabeth May won her seat. It is clear that change was in the air, and change we received.

Now we will move to the hard part of governing. The Conservatives have some Progressive Conservative types who may be willing to aggressively ensure that Mr. Harper governs close to the center.

The NDP have a large, but very young and new caucus. Their learning curve is going to be massive, and there will be some bumps along the way which they will need to be very careful about.

The Liberals now need to take the time to figure out where they go from here, as will the Bloc who I hope will decide that the days of having a separatist party within the federal parliament are now over.

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May 2, 2011

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Districts I will be watching closely on election night

This is turning out to be a more exciting election than it seemed heading into it. While a Conservative majority or minority still seems most likely, who would have guessed that an NDP minority government or NDP official opposition was on the table? Who would have predicted the collapse of the Bloc support in Quebec?

While the mangling of voter intention caused by our antiquated First Past the Post electoral system makes it hard to predict outcomes, I'm pretty confident about some districts. There are a number of specific districts I will be watching closely election night, with most (but not all) based on my interest in technology law.

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February 5, 2011

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Anti-competition everywhere in Canadian telecom/broadcast sectors.

I'm not a proud Canadian these days. It seems that everywhere I look I see some monopolist trying to wipe out free markets in Canada, and not enough government intervention to protect the market. There are individuals in the current cabinet who appear on the surface to share some ideas, but who are sending mixed messages. I also don't get the impression that there is enough support elsewhere in cabinet, with other parliamentarians and parties, or with the larger bureaucracy who should be working for us.

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December 14, 2010

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Smoke and mirrors from Clement and Moore

Today Ministers Clement and Moore had a little show in Ottawa's Rideau Center where they made statements about the so-called "iPod tax". (See press release)

I find it frustrating that the Ministers claim to be so concerned about a levy on devices, while at the same time including legal support for non-owner locks on our devices in C-32. If I had to choose between non-owner locks or levies, I would choose levies every time. This whole exercise seems to be smoke and mirrors aimed at misdirecting technology owners from the attack on their rights embedded within C-32.

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November 3, 2010

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» It has begun

The so-called "Copyright Modernization Act" was debated in the House of Commons yesterday. The debate started at about 10:20, broke for Statements by Members and Question period (14:00-15:05), and resumed until 5:30.

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June 28, 2010

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Is there a copy left vs copy right?

When I first heard a group outside of the Free/Libre and Open Source Software (FLOSS) or Creative Commons movement use the word "CopyLeft", I thought they were simply using the term incorrectly. (See: Independent authors just wanting a little respect... from fellow creators and collective societies from 2006)

In the FLOSS movement it means something similar to ShareAlike with Creative Commons: the license says the copyrighted work can be freely shared (without additional permission/payment) as long as any derivatives are equally shared. The licensing model is not opposed to copyright in any way, and focuses on material rewards in the form of additional creative works rather than royalties.

I continue to hear the term "copy left" used, sometimes by those who consider it a positive term, but more often by people who are trying to use the term in a derogatory manner. In this context the term is not being used to reference to a licensing model, but a political philosophy.

This suggests that the term "copy left" references a liberal creators' rights philosophy, and the "copy right" refers to a conservative creators' rights philosophy. It is only a coincidence that those on the "copy left" also support CopyLeft style licensing.

(Including full article here -- configuration issue at IT World Canada. Read full article on IT World Canada's blog >> )

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June 21, 2010

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Incorrect statements on C-32 from Honourable Tony Clement's staff?

Denver Gingerich asked Tony Clement some questions, and received a reply from Erik Waddell, Director of Communications, Office of the Honourable Tony Clement. I believe the reply to be incorrect. In it Erik references the WIPO treaty definition of TPMs, something which was included in C-60 but not in C-61 or C-32. Bill C-32 contains the USA DMCA's definition of technical measures.

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June 18, 2010

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» No C-32 committee until the fall.

A message from Industry Minister Tony Clement (@TonyClement_MP on Twitter) has indicated that there will be no C-32 special committee struck until the fall. (parl.gc.ca says, "The House of Commons is adjourned until Monday, September 20, 2010")

This should not be taken as meaning we should all take the summer off, but that we have time to ensure that all 308 MPs have an idea of why Copyright is so controversial, and that is not about "creators on one hand, and consumers on the other". My experience over the last near decade is that the debate is largely between different creators, since many of the proposals put forward by some are aimed at their competitors and not infringers.

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June 1, 2010

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» The Minister of Industry - Bill entitled “An Act to amend the Copyright Act”.

The new bill is now on the order paper. Like Bill C-61, and unlike previous Liberal bills, it will be tabled by the Minister of Industry rather than the Minister of Heritage.

January 19, 2010

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» PM announces changes to the Ministry

The Prime Minister announced changes to the federal ministers. (CBC) The important thing for us is that the Ministers of Industry, Heritage are the same.

The Minister of International Trade is now Peter Van Loan, while the Minister of Foreign Affairs remains with Lawrence Cannon. It can be argued that these ministers, and not Industry or Heritage, actually have the primary responsibility for Copyright law given Copyright is primarily set in trade and treaty negotiations.

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October 1, 2009

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Automobile property rights won't be protected by "Conservatives"

A Globe and Mail article discusses how federal Industry Minister Tony Clement has claimed that a temporary non-binding deal granting Canada's independent garages access to the proprietary software and tools to fix newer-model cars is sufficient to protect the right to repair. He is claiming that that Private Members bill C-273, the Right to Repair bill, is no longer necessary, suggesting that "intellectual property rights" need to be balanced against the rights of automobile owners. Sorry, but unless the automobile owner is manufacturing and distributing new automobiles, there are no legitimate "intellectual property rights" at question.

For a party that alleges to hold protecting property rights as a founding principle, they don't seem to be interested in protecting this right.

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October 30, 2008

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» Important MPs

MPs with positions relevant to copyright revision

This page is an attempt to identify the most relevant MPs from the perspective of copyright reform. If you are a constituent for one of these MPs, you can help ensure that they are well-educated on the issues.

Note: Page only updated for the Ministers. Parliamentary secretaries, and issue critics have not been named yet. The unknowns are marked as (U), listing the previous person holding the position.

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» New cabinet, new faces on Copyright

The new cabinet is being sworn in, and I'm updating our page for important MPs. Copyright being joint between Industry and Heritage, the two Ministers who will be responsible are The Honourable Tony Clement (Minister of Industry) and The Honourable James Moore
(Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages).

October 6, 2008

Digital Copyright Canada
digitalcopyright
Digital Copyright Canada
» 50 More Candidates Support Copyright Pledge as Liberals Show Support

The list of candidates supporting the Copyright Pledge has been updated on Monday the 6'th.

If your candidates aren't on this list, then ask them if they would take the pledge.

Addition: Hijal De Sarkar (NDP, Ottawa South)

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