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There need to be more than just two Town Hall discussions on copyright. That the Toronto venue filled within two days of being announced is a strong indicator that Canadian citizens want to be involved in these consultations. Limiting participation to 300 people at only two venues is NOT the open discussion that Canadians expect. At the very least, there should be Town Hall meetings in the capital city of each province, and the larger population centres. I suggest:
Vancouver,British Columbia | 611869
Calgary,Alberta | 968460
Ottawa,Ontario | 874433
Edmonton,Alberta | 822319
Hamilton,Ontario | 653638
Quebec City,Quebec | 645623
Winnipeg,Manitoba | 632063
Kitchener,Ontario | 409112
(If there's a way to communicate with the people responsible for these consultations please let me know, and post it prominently on this Web site)
cndcitizen [2009-07-25 23:42] Comment ID: 903 Reply to: 902
What about the maritimes?
BobJonkman [2009-07-26 02:36] Comment ID: 910 Reply to: 903
Absolutely in the Maritimes. Every provincial capital, and also the large population centres listed in my first message.
I'm hoping the Consultation organizers already know which cities are the provincial capitals, but just in case:
St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador
Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island
Fredricton, New Brunswick
Halifax, Nova Scotia
Quebec City, Quebec
Toronto, Ontario (obviously needs more than one)
Victoria, British Columbia
Yellowknife, Northwest Territories
rinzertanz [2009-07-26 00:07] Comment ID: 905 Reply to: 902
Bob, I agree with you.
You can email 'Nik', moderator, and CEO of NanoResearch, at the top right hand corner of this webpage, plus contact the ministries in the 'Resource' section of the website.
gnattress [2009-07-27 12:58] Comment ID: 961 Reply to: 902
Not even one in Ottawa! Makes you think they don't really want to hear what Canadians have to think on this issue.
jpotvin [2009-07-27 13:31] Comment ID: 965 Reply to: 961
I wonder what would happen if people in any particular region of the country autonomously organized an add-on event, and announced it here on this website? Call it CanadianCommunityCopyrightCamp (or "C4-Yourself" ;-). Then, if the report from such an event were to be submitted either here in the comments or as a formal submission to email@example.com the event would de facto *be* part of the consultation process.
danielsnider [2009-07-27 21:11] Comment ID: 1010 Reply to: 965
I agree and would attend one in Ottawa. Since Gatineau's round table it not open, nor transparent.
There is no reason for consumers to illegally obtain copies of copyrighted works. The excuse so many are giving--that it is their right to do so-- is really appalling and extremely self-serving. It is also hypocritical. There is the argument that because the new technology allows file transfer it should be free because it can be is made. No one offers, using the same logic, that free access to everyone's financial accounts is also possible with the new technology and funds in these accounts are as easily transferred to the possession of others with the new technology.
Nor have I read-- when the justification for taking for free what one wants is that the companies artists may be in contract with are undeserving of what they are investing in to promote-- no, not once have I read how that outraged artist defending consumer has mailed or electronically transfered a payment to the artist 'abused by corporations'… and now abused by consumers as well.
Depriving artists of the rights over how their creations are used and of making a livelihood does not contribute to expanding the national culture.
We Canadians drink and eat as frequently as we listen to music or read-- but no one is asking the government to change laws banning stores being locked at night-- a good thing too, as this sampling of responses indicates most of us would go clean the shelves of the products we now believe we have "a right" to possess and own for free.
meikipp [2009-07-25 20:39] Comment ID: 895 Reply to: 893
Not all copying of work without paying or copies made without the artists permission are illegal. The levy on CDs covers copying of music for personal use for example. Other uses may qualify as fair dealing.
stevenha [2009-07-26 11:52] Comment ID: 916 Reply to: 893
Eveyone agrees on this JBlack. Now move on, to creating a fair law where the penalty fits the crime, but no harsher. We don't want corporation networks bankrupting families with lawsuits, to punish a teenage who downloaded hundreds of songs. We don't want to reward corporations for placing "digital locks" on absolutely everything.
JeffM [2009-07-26 13:54] Comment ID: 921 Reply to: 893
The internet makes it easier to find some of Canadian media. If you can't find it anywhere else its hard not to pirate. Canadian content is especially hard to find at the retail level when you're talking about older TV shows and certain movies and CDs/Vinyl. Most people would gladly pay for a copy but they either weren't produced or they were under-produced. If companies moved their business models to match up with the internet properly, piracy and copyright laws would almost be a non-issue.
Jkobo [2009-07-26 14:39] Comment ID: 922 Reply to: 893
Welcome to the debate, and thanks for voicing your concerns. Many industries not just music, built upon the sharing of ideas to create innovation. Copyright was conceived on the notion that it would protect innovation with inside industry, not solely as a payment scheme for creators (that's part of it, but innovation is key in driving industry forward not copyright). Right now people are innovating but at a slower pace due to the amount of control content creators have and how expensive it is to obtain that control through copyright. The more innovation that occurs, the more money in the pockets of creator groups. The problem within side the music industry is that over the past 10 years, the "control" content owners have in this industry has got in the way of several innovative ideas, and not allowing these idea's to move forward to benefit the industry as a whole due to in large part not being fair and expecting massive settlements which drives potential income for the industry away.
There has been a lot of industry "propaganda" toward the public with respect to the legitimacy of P2P and file sharing networks. As someone who works with artists and labels on a frequent basis, I can tell you that there is a growing number of voices within side the industry that see's to potential in promotions within these networks and want to see it monetized. The old regime of copyright you are describing about artists rights over control over their works is not entirely true. In the music business those rights are signed over to the labels upon contracts. Artists basically have very little to no say on how their works are used or abused by the labels, and receive very little kick back from the copyright royalties, pennies per song if that. So the notion of you "stealing" from the artists on download is basically from 4 labels out of thousands that exist, and those 4 stand to lose a vast majority of market share if P2P sticks around because they have built their businesses around using copyright as a paycheck, rather than using copyright to instill innovation and bring in more income. There has been a tremendous amount of independent research that is available from our own Government, and recently many other governments around the world that people who download through the file sharing networks purchase more media. There is no evidence from independent research that can factually prove any negative impact solely bases on P2P file sharing. File sharing is an excellent way to discover new sounds, and the vast majority of our big Canadian Talent agrees with this, and wants to see it monetized, not penalized under law:
Here is the research our Canadian Government did on this:
http://www.dime-eu.org/node/477 -> Author of the Industry Canada report rebutting paid industry paid criticism on her report
http://www.dime-eu.org/node/477#comment-1 -> personal comments from a researcher at the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development
The question therefore should be "how do we build copyright to include file sharing networks, and spark much needed innovation for not just the music industry but all selected industries effected by copyright as well"?
sjbrown [2009-07-26 16:24] Comment ID: 925 Reply to: 893
I think your complaint is against distribution of copyrighted works. By my measure, only an extreme few are making excuses for that. I think you'll find that if you read the comments, the main issues are:
1. Anti-circumvention laws - corporations should not pressure the government into making new laws that say I can't tinker with the goods I buy for my personal use. I should be able to tell others how I tinkered with my property.
2. Fair use - I should be able to make mash-ups, collages, show excerpts of films in class, etc.
3. Balanced penalties - A family should not be bankrupted because the 11-year-old daughter was sharing Britney Spears albums
4. No DRM - I should be able to make backup copies, change formats so I can play on my iPod, the ability to play the media should not depend on the vendor keeping their DRM service online.
5. Safe Harbour - If protected content is being distributed by one of my network nodes, unknown to me, there should be a system of "asking nicely" for it to be taken down, rather than me being immediately subject to a lawsuit.
markt [2009-07-27 10:18] Comment ID: 956 Reply to: 925
One must always bear in mind that not all distribution of copyrighted works is illegal either, as a copyright holder can most certainly give permission for somebody to make distributable copies of his or her works. Copyright governs, or is supposed to govern, copying, and only copying. While distribution may be used to prove copyright infringement, it is not the act of copyright infringement itself. If a person hasn't otherwise received explicit permission to create distributable copies, it's what they choose to do afterwards with any copies that they make that determines whether or not the copy was authorized in the first place.
Chris Brand [2009-07-27 15:21] Comment ID: 968 Reply to: 956
Actually, it's the other way round. The first copyright act (The Statute Of Anne) didn't regulate copying at all, only distribution and publication. "Reproduction" was added later, at a time when making a copy required a printing press and thus was a reasonable indication of an intent to publish or distribute.
I've seen good arguments for moving copyright back to covering only publication and distribution, removing "copying" as one of the rights granted under copyright.
It's really unfortunate that they chose the word "copy" (meaning manuscript) for the name of the rights granted, because it generates exactly this kind of confusion.
markt [2009-07-27 22:49] Comment ID: 1021 Reply to: 968
My understanding is that the copy part of copyright refers to it notas a noun, but as a verb. Literally, thus, the "right to copy" a particular work. This may not have originally been the case when the term was coined, but again this is my understanding of what it has become.
The problem with copyright only barring publication or distribution is that it does not thus really govern the concept of derivative works.
Chris Brand [2009-07-29 15:45] Comment ID: 1115 Reply to: 1021
I think that's how most people understand the "copy" part of "copyright" today, but that doesn't mean that it's accurate :-)
I don't see why derivative works would not covered - if I create a derivative work at home and keep it to myself, no harm is done anyway. If I publish or distribute it, it would be covered by a copyright law that doesn't worry about "copying".
gnattress [2009-07-27 12:04] Comment ID: 958 Reply to: 893
Your analogy of the food store being locked comparing it to DRM is false. A much more apt analogy would be locks on tinned good such that if you imported a cheaper tin of ham from abroad, your key wouldn't open it, and instead you'd have to illegally take a knife to the tin to get in to eat the ham you'd bought. Or maybe you microwave dinner would be so locked that your microwave wouldn't allow the food to be re-heated a second time (say you have leftovers), but instead get you to purchase another "single serving" of food.
Criminalizing the removal of DRM is also bad because it leads to a state of perpetual copyright in those works for which it is applied to.
This whole debate is not about getting free stuff, but about being able to actually own and use as you see fit, on what format you see fit, on your media server in your own home or your iPod the content you have purchased.
It is time to remove the term "copy" from the rights discussion. If we were starting from a greenfield today without the history of copyright we would never consider putting the control point at the copy level. In the digital age copying is necessary to consume the media content. It's copied from disk to memory, from memory to screen from device to device. Attempts to update copyright laws have skirted around this issue by using vague terms like "fair use" but have not addressed the reality that it's no longer relevant. The consumer requires the right to make copies for their own personal use.
When copyright was originally created it was not possible to manage all the points of sale but the cost of copying made it the correct control point (at the time). If we started today with the same goals it would make sense to put the point of control at the point of sale. The right should be the right to sell for profit from the creative work. If we were starting from a clean slate I'm convinced that is where the rights would end.
If we take into account the history of copyright we can no longer stop at just the right to profit. We now need to include the right to distribute. This is still not a manageable control point but the right holder needs legal recognition that no other party can distribute the content without their permission.
I believe the above two rights are how the courts have ruled on the existing copyright laws so this isn't radical thinking.
The rights are also not practically manageable today. They are too long and measuring for the time the creator dies just complicates this. The recent example of Amazon selling copies of 1984 from a publisher that didn't have the rights is an example of this. It should be easy for a company to identify who the rights holder is but it's practically impossible today.
The existing copyright laws were extended because of the less the 1% of creative work that is still making profit after 10 years. Companies like Disney and bands like the Beatles do not need the laws modified to protect their profits but that is what has happened.
I personally believe that the right to distribute should be limited to 10 years from the point of creation and the right to profit from should be limited to 20 years. My logic for extending the right to profit beyond the distribution right is because of derivative works such as movies being made from books.
cbf123 [2009-07-29 14:55] Comment ID: 1106 Reply to: 881
I like your thinking, and agree that the right to profit from a work should really be separate from the right to distribute a work, and both should be separate from the right to copy a work.
Under this view, format and time shifting for personal use would not be considered distribution or profit infringement, and so would logically be allowed. It's an elegant solution.
I'm not sure how you'd deal with the existing "fair dealing" exceptions, since the currently allowed duplication for personal study could be interpreted as infringement of the right to profit since you're now not going to need to purchase the work.
RJWitmer [2009-07-30 07:16] Comment ID: 1139 Reply to: 1106
My thinking is that the "fair dealing" exceptions wouldn't be required. Other artists or students would be free to work with and copy for their own personal use. If they want to sell the new work they create then they would have to sign a deal with the original right holder because now they want to profit from it.
cbf123 [2009-07-30 08:50] Comment ID: 1141 Reply to: 1139
I'm not sure I follow. You've separated out a "right to profit" and a "right to distribute". Without the fair dealing exception, how would it be acceptable to photocopy a magazine article for personal use in a library?
If those exceptions aren't there, then both the rights have been violated to some degree--another person has obtained the work without the rights holder being compensated.
RJWitmer [2009-07-30 09:43] Comment ID: 1143 Reply to: 1141
In your example the library is performing the distribution and should have compensated the right holder for the ability to distribute. The person making a photocopy isn't distributing or generating a profit from the copy so an exception wouldn't be required.
There would have to be definitions around what is or isn't a distribution. For example some people would interpret the photocopy as a distribution but I wouldn't.
I also think that the compensation that the libraries pay the artists needs to be updated to handle digital works. If I borrow an electronic book from the library I personally believe that the author should be compensated the same as if I purchased it (as a tax payer it pains me to say this). The tax payers can then have the debate if we need to have new release ebooks in the libraries or if they wait for a year or two until they're available in the library.
cbf123 [2009-07-30 11:24] Comment ID: 1148 Reply to: 1143
Actually, the library is lending the original copy and there happens to be a photocopy machine present. Under your proposed system the individual would be doing the distribution (to themselves) by making a copy for themselves.
Why would borrowing an electronic book be any different than borrowing a paper book? In both cases the lender receives the original book back and the book has been read by another person. The lender hasn't distributed the work--they've temporarily given up their original copy.
Steve L [2009-08-06 17:14] Comment ID: 1396 Reply to: 1106
I think it cannot be practical or just to have legal control over distribution of digital media except to make it illegal to profit from copyrighted work.
Making copies from a book or magazine in a library is not "distribution," since the copy is not an exact reproduction of the original. The photocopy is inferior in quality, has an inferior medium (a form that's only desirable for short-term use), and is incomplete (only part of a book or magazine, though maybe a complete chapter or article).
I think copies of digital media shared online are similar. The copies are inferior in quality and stored on inferior media (not factory-made CDs and DVDs with nice packaging). It would be a different matter if someone made an exact copy of a CD or DVD in every detail (including the packaging) for distribution to others; and I doubt that doing this would be worthwhile to anyone unless they were trying to profit from it, which is clearly unethical.
In the digital age, copying and sharing digital files should not be illegal unless profit is being made by the people doing it.
jchalifour [2009-09-13 12:52] Comment ID: 2503 Reply to: 881
Excellent point about the terminology of "copy"right. It's nicely inline with what is required for the rethinking of the associated rights at the heart of this discussion.
My background is in software development, and as a person that has been in this industry for over half of my life now, I've evolved some fairly strong opinions on the matter. Instead of boring you with a 5000 or more words monologue on everything that I think, however (as people who know me can testify, I could probably do that), I shall highlight what I think are some key issues that are of strong concern to me.
First of all, I think that future copyright should explicitly exempt all private copying from copyright infringement, much as the current copyright system in Canada explicitly exempts private copying of sound recordings from infringement. My reason for this is that I believe it simplifies copyright law, rather than making special cases for one particular type of work, and there is a levy placed on blank media that supposedly covers this, the size of storage notwithstanding, the media could just as easily contain a copy of any other form of copyrighted work anyways. There seems to me to be little point in differentiating between them when they are stored digitally because in the end, all they are is just 1's and 0's… and are indiscernible from each other at that level anyways.
I further think that transmitting, sharing, giving, renting, leasing, lending, or in any other way distributing a copy of a copyrighted work to others, or even merely offering to do any of these, should void (irrevocably) any private copying exemption they might have otherwise had on that copy. Whether or not this makes them guilty of copyright infringement depends entirely on simply whether or not the copy was authorized by the copyright holder in the first place (for purposes other than personal use). I believe that the text of the copyright act needs to be explicit in this matter so that there can be no ambiguity in this regard. Again, I think that this simplifies the copyright act because it makes it clear that lending copyrighted works to other people is always perfectly legal when the works being lent out were original works that were authorized by the copyright holder. Further, the presence of photocopies in libraries would also be acceptable, since the libraries are not creating copies of their material for anybody else… they are merely providing facilities for people to create copies for their own private use, which in turn, could be exempt from infringement. Taken to the extreme, one might imagine a scenario where a facility situated within a library permits people to photocopy entire books for themselves… I think, however, that the real-world demand for this sort of thing would probably be low as the total costs to a person who might do this is liable to be significantly more than the cost of the book itself. Conversely, however, making a copyrighted file on one's home computer publicly available would not be legal unless the person was authorized by the copyright holder to have made a non-personal use copy, because the copy that resides on one's computer, after all, is *NOT* the original copy that was authorized by the copyright holder.
Back to the subject of copyright, however, I further do not think that anyone who creates a copy of a copyrighted work from one that was supposed to be for the private use of another person should themselves be permitted to claim any private use exemption on the newer copy. Again, I think that the text of the copyright act should be explicit on this matter to avoid ambiguity.
The above proposals would explicitly authorize any private copying of a copyrighted work, while simultaneously making it clear that any so-called claims of private use must not show any evidence to the contrary.
Finally, and in my opinion most importantly of all, I most heartily believe that any future changes to the copyright act should categorically *NOT* criminalize efforts made to bypass copy protection that may be placed by the copyright holder unless those efforts are made with the intent of OTHERWISE committing copyright infringement. Such a provision would still be compatible with the WIPO treaty, and would have the upshot that people who may be using alternative technologies that currently enjoy whatever measure of interoperability its users find amenable would not suddenly find themselves effectively excommunicated from digital society without resorting to breaking the law. To pass a law that outlaws any and all unauthorized copy protection circumvention without regard to the intent of the copier is overwhelming biased towards currently popular technologies only, even without explicitly mentioning them, and implicitly limits the directions that future technologies might take.
markt [2009-07-25 16:06] Comment ID: 890 Reply to: 880
Just noticed a typo up above that may have been misleading… when I mentioned photocopies in libraries, I actually meant photocopieRs… I mistyped it and never caught the mistake, although what I mentioned above may be misleading.
I want to focus on just one statement for my discussion.
"Canadian copyright law needs to be updated to give Canadian creators and consumers the tools they need to engage with confidence in the digital marketplace."
I believe that this statement has in it all that we need moving forward. What worries me is that we will go too far at the request of industry lobby groups. The point of updating copyright laws is to give creators confidence. We want to encourage creators. So let's do that.
1. 20 years of protection. This is an enormous amount of time to generate a profit. It then allows derivitive works that create new and interesting content and digital libraries of older content such that the culture generated by that content is preserved for future generations to enjoy.
2. While it has just as many potential privacy concerns, a digital fingerprint on digital content tying it to the purchaser would make it trivial to trace pirated material back to the entity that illegally distributed it, while not preventing that consumers from making copies for personal use such as backups and device shifting.
The industry constantly tells us that DRM is there to prevent illegal reproduction of their works. But what are they really asking for? What DRM really does is "fix" a bunch of problems facing the industry today. And that is new technology. Every time new technology arrives, the industry loses a bit of control over their product, when and where and how it can be used. What DRM does is give the content owner ultimate control over all aspects of their content. While this is not necessarily true of the current technology, say DVDs, consider future technologies in an always connected world: Is that movie you bought going to be broadcast on CBC tonight? With DRM the owner could block access to the movie today so that they can protect the ad revenue they will get by ensuring the only way you watch it is on CBC instead. Want to listen to that new album on the go? DRM technologoies could detect that you are no longer in your house and that could be an extra charge. That sounds ridiculous, but with DRM they have all the right in the world to do just that.
DRM also stifles the free market. Consumers have very little they can do as it is. At best, we can speak with our wallets and give our business to someone we feel respects us as consumers. With DRM we essentially lose that right. Let's use a hypothetical example: You buy an oPod. You love it and the convenience that oSongs affords you and purchase all your new music there and even some old music since it's so convenient. Over time you spend thousands of dollars building your library. Then the quality of the products coming from Orange start to degrade to the point where you feel you have to do something about it. But when you consider going to the product from Tangerine, you find all your oSongs are locked to an oPod. It makes more economic sense to shut up and put up then to repurchase all that content again. Consumers would lose their voice.
So what is DRM about? DRM is asking the government to take away all rights from the consumer and give it to the producer. It's not the government's job to create revenue streams through new laws. Nor should the government be giving unlimited rights to one group over another. The government's purpose is to have as little intervention as possible while ensuring that creative individuals can be remunerated for their efforts.
fixerdave [2009-07-27 03:33] Comment ID: 951 Reply to: 879
> …While it has just as many potential privacy concerns, a digital fingerprint on digital content tying it to the purchaser…
No good, if it can be put in, if it can be read, it can be taken out. It's the same for any DRM, a complete waste of time that causes more harm than good. There is no technical solution to copyright protection and any attempt to do so will only result in what amounts to an arms race, an arms race the producers will lose.
The solution must be social. Seeing as how there are millions of people sharing digital content, DRM'd or not, I think it's about time the producer gave up the "it's stealing" line. It's obviously not working.
No, the only viable solution is to completely give up on the control of not-for-profit distribution. Yes, this will destroy some current business models, but that's inevitable. These models no longer work, they can't work. Selling copies of something that can be copied for free makes no sense and laws won't change that. Expecting otherwise is, well, pointless. We don't need new laws, we need new business models.
As a student in the New Media Arts program at Ryerson University I have discovered that an over abundance of copyright protection rather than protecting artists is actually stifling cultural capitol. We have moved past a society where experiences and concepts can be commodified, we can't go back and we are better for it.
JBlack [2009-07-25 20:05] Comment ID: 892 Reply to: 878
Craig don't confuse the fact that you don't pay for something as that item not being commodified. Most of the internet is based upon ad revenue-- why? Because most of the early internet companies wanted to jump start their business with free or illegally used content-- content after all takes time, money and skill to create.
I teach new media and I think what you mean by "stifling cultural capital" is your not being permitted to use copyrighted material to put-- what is supposed to be --your creative project together. If students didnt' insist on ripping artists' images and music then the road to their own creativity would be faster because they would learn how to create it themselves or partner with peers who specialize in other mediums.
In any case, I'm sure when you graduate you will put your Ryerson degree down on your CV and commodify that experience. Good luck to you.
sjbrown [2009-07-26 16:41] Comment ID: 926 Reply to: 892
JBlack, while I agree; things that have value will naturally become commodified, you are being a little loose with your facts.
"Most of the internet is based upon ad revenue"
Not really. I'd agree that most web sites that offer information as their primary content are based on ad revenue. The internet is much bigger than that, however.
"Because most of the early internet companies wanted to jump start their business with free or illegally used content"
No way. Consider the fact that Winamp didn't even come out until 1997. You'll have to be much more specific than that to make your point.
S.41, Copyright Act: 163 Âwords, versus S.31, Bill CÂ61: 4,311 Âwords. That's not "an amendment".