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Recommendations: Expanding Fair Dealing Rights
The restrictive provisions of the current copyright law are seriously hampering educators' efforts to deliver courses that engage students that are digital natives. The key to reforming copyright so that it works for education and students lies in expanding the fair dealing rights that already exist in copyright law. Fair dealing protects the right to reproduce copyrighted material for the purposes of private study, criticism, research, review, or news reporting. We recommend that fair dealing for the purpose of teaching be added to this list.
Educators protected by fair dealing rights should be able to do the following:
Many of these provisions are available to students in other countries. In those countries, educational institutions are not faced with paying the onerous copyright costs that current Canadian copyright law requires.
In addition, a new copyright act should make provision to ensure equal access for persons with perceptual disabilities. Any provision of the law making it illegal to circumvent a technological measure ("digital lock") on a digital work must have an exception for persons with perceptual disabilities allowing educators or those acting for them to make available these works in alternative formats.
A new copyright law should also permit cinematographic works to be interpreted in sign language either live or in a format specially designed for persons with a perceptual disability.