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Today I'm writing to voice my concern about the Bill C-61.
I urge Canadian politicians to not enact this bill. Passing such bill would clearly stifle innovation and decrease the quality of our educational system.
Furthermore, similar laws have been enacted in the U.S.A. in the past years without much success. Piracy is still a growing problem there, the only difference is they are destroying lives and creating criminals out of honest tax payers.
At the very least if their intent to protect artists and their intellectual propriety was honest. But it's far from the reality.
The RIAA has been suing thousands of people, young, old, poor and sick.. even some dead! They have been racking millions in case settlement over copyright infringements.
Did any of those poor artists who they are representing got their fair share of the settlements ?
Not a dime.
The real battle we and they are fighting here is not for the protection of artists nor their intellectual proprieties, it's a battle over the control of information and its distribution means.
They want to control what we can or cannot watch, how many times we can watch it and how long we can keep it.
They basically want this for two reasons;
So they could sell us the same content over and over again. Ultimately in their biggest fantasy; I would pay for CD then I would also pay for downloading that same music album on my computer and then I would have to pay for it again to have the same album on my mp3 player or on my cell phone. And of course if my girlfriend wants it on her computer she would also have to pay. If I want a song on that album as ring-tone on my cell phone, I would then have to buy the 4.99$ official ring-tone instead of turning myself into a criminal by just creating a trimmed mp3 .. of a song I already bought multiple times.
In other words, they want to make fair use a crime, effectively turning thousands of Canadian into prosecutable criminals for them. Then they will use the same scare tactics than in the U.S.A. They will prosecute everyone they can and for millions in damage for a handful of mp3 downloads.
And like in the U.S.A., they will capitalise on the fact that most people will chicken out from the court battle and accept their expensive settlements.
I call this extortion.
Please don't let this happen here.
The second reason they want those law to be implemented is to secure their moribund business model and thus, not die.
With the growth of technology and the wake of the Internet, they miserably failed to adapt their business model to the new mediums.
Initially the music industry as we know it was a necessity in order to get a substantial success. They were the only gateway to success since they had total control over the distribution system.
But today the technologies and communication means are cheaper and more effective everyday and the game is changing fast.
This had an instant effect on how the star system works. People can distribute their art over the Internet for free and become famous over-night.
The fat middleman is not as needed as before and understandably, he want to reverse that trend. However doing it at the expense of millions of Canadians' most fundamental rights is a really bad idea.
To conclude times have changed, the markets and the technologies changed, but they did not. They either have to adapt or die. As for the artists, don't worry. Arts existed and artists lived well before the first manager ever screwed anybody.
New distributions models will be created, they already did in fact and the results are often surprising.
I will end my plea with by highlighting an experiment made by Radiohead in 2007.
And I have quoted the relevant parts below my signature for your convenience.
The full Wikipedia article can be found here; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/In_Rainbows#Distribution
Kind regards, Shawn Gryschuk