Information identified as archived on the Web is for reference, research or recordkeeping purposes. It has not been altered or updated after the date of archiving. Web pages that are archived on the Web are not subject to the Government of Canada Web Standards. As per the Communications Policy of the Government of Canada, you can request alternate formats on the "Contact Us" page.
How do Canada's Copyright laws affect you? How should existing laws be modernized?
The most obvious way that Copyright laws affect me is as a consumer and user of media. I also can be, and have been, an occasional creator of media. Lastly, I am a computer programmer, and often create works of code, some of which even interact with works of media.
I think any modernization of the laws should take recent changes, like the internet, the ease of creating new media, and Peer-To-Peer technologies, into consideration but without making specific mention of these new and emerging methods. That would leave the laws invariably out-of-date the next time any new technology comes along.
It is my feeling the law should be based on actions rather than methods. I feel that once I have given the Creator the dues they desire Copyright law should have reached its bounds. At that point, I legitimately have a copy, and should be able to do with it as I please. Of course, this will not extend to the point where someone else can use my copy illegitimately. In that case Copyright Law comes back in, as I am an unauthorized distributor, and another is using me to break Copyright Law.
Based on Canadian values and interests, how should Copyright changes be made in order to withstand the test of time?
Like I've previously stated, it is my belief that the laws should be written to declare, as clearly as possible, what is and is not allowed. Thus, Canadian Copyright laws should focus not on what technologies or methods people are using, but what they are doing with them.
Stating "A person should not obtain a copy of a work for which the Creator has not been compensated in the way they require", rather than saying "A person should not use Peer-To-Peer technologies to download music they haven't bought"
What sorts of copyright changes do you believe would best foster innovation and creativity in Canada?
When it comes to Creativity the most important things are having very clear, but broad and open-ended, terms for use. This includes Fair Use, as well as using works with permission, using works you've purchased, etc. Again, these should be method agnostic.
It is becoming increasingly easy to create new ideas, and remix old ones, in new and interesting ways. Mashing-up two or more completely unrelated sources can create something entirely new and fresh.
While credit to those who have come before is important and necessary, the law has to balance that with the need to foster as many new works as possible. To stay out of the way of art and progress as much as possible.
In Innovation, like I've said before, it depends on defining What is right and wrong, rather than How it is done. This way people can continue to innovate with a clear knowledge of where the line is, and can work within it.
Some new technology may come out that is superior to whatever was used before, and people can move to it, and embrace it, without needing to rewrite the laws.
What sorts of copyright changes do you believe would best foster competition and investment in Canada?
Making the breaking of digital locks illegal would definitely hamper competition. It is my belief that the breaking of digital locks should not be mentioned anywhere in the Copyright law. Like I have said above, what I do with my content after I've purchased it should not be the domain of Copyright law.
Technical Protection Measures are not intended to protect the rights of the creator, and serve only to try to limit what we the consumer can do with the content once we have already paid our dues. It is strictly anti-competitive; making it so that content purchased from one source can only be used on "The Approved Player(s)" and not done with as we please, taking away our choice.
Either way, whether anti-competitive or anti-copyright-infringement, it is ineffective. It can never keep those who wish to steal from stealing, and only ever ends up getting in the way of those who are looking to legitimately use content that they have legitimately acquired.
If you are looking to be really pro-active I would say that the banning of digital locks, or the encouraging of their breaking, is the bravest position, and the most pro-competition. This should probably come up in some anti-competition law. I still feel it doesn't belong in Copyright law.
What kinds of changes would best position Canada as a leader in the global, digital economy?
Everything I've put above. Fostering Innovation and Creativity. Making it so that Canadian creators can create, unhampered, the best and most progressive works. Making it so that Canadian users can do with their content as they please, rather than being locked in by vendors. Making it so that Canadian developers can create new and interesting uses for media without fear of persecution.