Bill C-32

Five questions... on OpenAttitude.com

Andrew Currie posted an interview he did with me last evening, in advance of my participation in a live streamed episode of DyscultureD this evening.

Mr. Moore's comments about anyone who opposes aspects of C-32

Canada Newswire has posted video of the speech given by Heritage Minister James Moore. His closing, at around 7 minutes into the second video, is a rant against people like myself who are critical of aspects of the bill which are harmful to creators.

IMHO My most radical view in this debate has been that legal protection for technical measures has to respect the Canadian constitution, and that TPMs protecting contracting and eCommerce be legally protected in the appropriate provincial legislation.

It is important we know what type of extremism we are up against with the current Heritage Minister, in order for us to push forward amendments that will make C-32 less harmful to the interests of Canadian creators.

(See also: Michael Geist's comments)

I embedded the videos below.

Heritage Minister James Moore blocks transparency

Heritage Minister James Moore, the Minister who is said to be largely responsible for the use of DMCA language in C-32 rather than the use of WIPO language for technical measures, has gone as far as blocking me access to follow his tweets. It is one thing for him to have ignored the large number of creators opposing components of C-32, and it is yet another to seek to avoid any accountability and transparency.

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See also: Has Heritage Minister James Moore blocked you on Twitter?

Incorrect statements on C-32 from Honourable Tony Clement's staff?

Denver Gingerich asked Tony Clement some questions, and received a reply from Erik Waddell, Director of Communications, Office of the Honourable Tony Clement. I believe the reply to be incorrect. In it Erik references the WIPO treaty definition of TPMs, something which was included in C-60 but not in C-61 or C-32. Bill C-32 contains the USA DMCA's definition of technical measures.

Differentiating allies and opponents in the Copyright debate

Copyright is often claimed to be a balance between rights-holders’ interests on the one hand and the interests of users and society as a whole on the other hand. I only wish things were that simple. I could take my place alongside other rights-holders, and know that copyright law would at least be taking the interests of creators into serious consideration.

The problem is that the reality is quite different. With digital copyright you have potentially 4 rights-holder groups. Even if you only consider the interests of copyright holders, the vast majority of the debates I have witnessed have been between and within copyright holder groups, not between copyright holders and some other individual or group.

Just as with previous bills, the tabling of Bill C-32 will bring new people to the debate. Reading how I evaluate my allies and opponents may be useful as a kick-start for those people.

Read full article on IT World Canada's blog

No C-32 committee until the fall.

A message from Industry Minister Tony Clement (@TonyClement_MP on Twitter) has indicated that there will be no C-32 special committee struck until the fall. (parl.gc.ca says, "The House of Commons is adjourned until Monday, September 20, 2010")

This should not be taken as meaning we should all take the summer off, but that we have time to ensure that all 308 MPs have an idea of why Copyright is so controversial, and that is not about "creators on one hand, and consumers on the other". My experience over the last near decade is that the debate is largely between different creators, since many of the proposals put forward by some are aimed at their competitors and not infringers.

More non-infringement changes to the media marketplace.

According to a Wall Street Journal blog article by Lauren Goode, "the Internet" is set to overtake Newspapers in ad revenue, and will be second only to television. I read articles like this every day, and think: it really is silly how so many copyright holders believe that infringement is the most important thing impacting the content and media industries.

(And on with a rant! Just tossing some thoughts out there. Comments?)

Putting the Genie in the Bottle

I read this article in Wired today. What blew me away most about it had nothing to do with yet-another-round-of-legal-shenanigans that the article was about. Rather, it was the quoted 30 million unique users per month that ISOHunt.com enjoys.

A real-world e-book conversation, TPM included

Author John Degen has posted some fictional conversations between a writer and a reader on his blog (June 9, June 10). I say it is fictional as it ignores how the relevant technology works, and thus not only the lack of clarity of the relationships between writers and readers but also the fact that there is a technology company as intermediary that separates there from being much of a relationship at all between writers and readers. It depicts some rare moment where all the parties involved have the same understanding of the relationship, likely because this is really just a case of John having a conversation with himself.

This conversation is a good example to use to better understand the technology involved, the relationships, and what is the correct law to govern these types of relationships. It is also a demonstration why the existing anti-circumvention provisions within Bill C-32 require major revision in order to not cause massive unintended consequences that will be harmful to the interests of both the writers and readers John was intending to be writing about.

Read full article on IT world Canada's blog...

Why legal protection for technical measures is controversial

For those who will be in Ottawa on Saturday, August 14, 2010, I will be presenting a talk titled Why legal protection for technical measures is controversial at Open Source Technology showcase - SC2010.

Not surprisingly, we will be discussing the USA's National Information Infrastructure (NII) Copyright Protection Act of 1995, the 1996 WIPO Internet treaties, the USA's DMCA in 1998, as well as Canadian bills C-60 (2005), C-61 (2008) and C-32 (2010). If it isn't dead yet, we'll discuss the Orwellian double-speak named Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA).

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