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1. How do Canada's copyright laws affect you? How should existing laws be modernized?
It affects me in several ways. As an owner of a substantial collection of music, videos and games computer software as either albums, CDs, VHS tapes, DVDs, diskettes and cartridges I strongly believe that it is my right to use these media how I see fit, especially when it comes to: transferring content from an old medium (e.g. album) to a new medium (e.g. mp3 player). As long as I own the original and don't resell it I think it's my right to use it in a respectable manner. Also, I think it is my right to make a backup of old media to protect it in the event of loss, as long as I don't distribute those backups. I also think it is my right to sell the original as long as I don't keep copies of it.
I've also encountered issues with Digital Rights Management (DRM) that has stopped me from being able to make a backup of an easily scratched CD, and stopped me from storing all my DVDs on a hard drive rather than being hassled by physical media. I think that DRM does more harm than good and that we shouldn't be treated as criminals for wanting to keep backups of our data or use them on more modern media. We're paying for the right to listen to a song, to play a game, to read a book, not the right to listen to a song on a specific piece of plastic, to play a game only if it comes from that exact piece of plastic you bought, etc.
2. Based on Canadian values and interests, how should copyright changes be made in order to withstand the test of time
I think we need to realize that media change constantly, but that when a person purchases content (audio, video, literary, software, etc.) they are purchasing the right to experience that content, and shouldn't be limited by the medium it happened to be delivered upon at the time.
I also think that if I purchased a product (e.g. a Digital Video Recorder) from a content provider (e.g. Bell or Videotron) that it shouldn't be disabled and that features built into it should be functional, and if not turned on, it should be my right to turn them on. If Bell/etc. don't like that they just need to not sell that product.
Finally, I think that there is a serious lack of content being made available to the public domain. Patents expire after 12 years, and yet unless you wrote something 100 years ago, it's damn near impossible for it to show up in the public domain now. Culture is very important, and making content accessible through the public domain within a reasonable amount of time would be beneficial to Canadians and allow us to better evolve ideas to be shared with the world.
3. What sorts of copyright changes do you believe would best foster innovation and creativity in Canada?
No DRM. The right to share with friends without being treated as criminals. The right to make backups of our content. Limiting copyrights to 20 years after the death of the original holder. Encouraging the transfer of copyrights to the public domain at time of death through tax benefits.
4. What sorts of copyright changes do you believe would best foster competition and investment in Canada?
The return of royalties to authors and interpreters, and not the media distributors. Not taxing internet sales. Removing he levy on digital media.
5. What kinds of changes would best position Canada as a leader in the global, digital economy?
Thank you for taking my reply into consideration,