Copyright acts and bills should be more entertaining


I wrote to my Member of Parliament yesterday (Maurice Vellacott) regarding rumours about a new copyright bill being discussed in the House of Commons. I’ll include a portion of the letter here for your reading pleasure….

The “digital rights management” (DRM) technologies used by publishers should not stop the public from making lawful uses of their legitimately acquired media. It is my conviction that DRM, when enshrined in law protects these publishers from competing with the same free market forces they have benefited so richly from in the past.

In my opinion DRM can not help but be invasive to consumer privacy and sometimes destructive to consumer property given it’s unrealistic goals. The relatively recent Sony “rootkit” debacle illustrates this quite well as do several failed legal attempts to prosecute those who circumvent DRM in jurisdictions with tough DRM legislation. At this point in time, when large publishers and providers such as EMI, Apple Itunes Store and Google are relaxing DRM and rethinking outmoded systems of licensing, distribution and even content creation it would be a disservice to our country to side with these same outmoded systems in our law-making.

Having differed in opinion with my sitting MP I am pleased to say that I received a prompt response saying he agreed with pretty much everything I’d expressed in the email and that he would forward it to the Minister responsible for this area (either Jim Prentice, Minister of Industry or Josee Verner, Minister of Heritage, hopefully both). I am impressed.

Unfortunately it appears that Jim Prentice the minister responsible for the bill is refusing to answer any public questions about the bill until it is introduced. I guess the answer to all the questions will be the bill itself followed by a mad scramble to be sure the bill reflects the will of the Canadian public as opposed to the lobby powers of the legal department of a few large US corporations.

Please visit the website of Michael Geist for much more detailed information. Join the “Fair Copyright for Canada” facebook group and if this motivates you then write some emails or letters to our policy makers.

  • December 4, 2007
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