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[d@DCC] The Copyright bill - C-60

From: Charles MacDonald <cmacd _-at-_ telecomottawa.net>
To: OConnor.G (at) parl.gc.ca
Cc: Harper.S -_at_- parl.gc.ca, General Digital Copyright Discussion <discuss -_at_- digital-copyright.ca>, mp -_at_- gordonoconnor.ca
Date: Sun, 26 Jun 2005 10:17:28 -0400

HI there, as a resident of Stittsville, I am writing to you concerning 
the new copyright bill.  (c-60)

I am wondering what the opposition position to this bill is, as I feel 
that it is certainly worthy of being opposed.

Copyright is a balance that is intended to foster creativity.  Folks who 
create various forms of art are given the rights to control there work 
for a limited time in order to encourage creativity, with the firm 
understanding that at some future date, that work will become part of 
the Public domain and contribute to the rich culture of Canada.

By limiting the use that others can make of new creativity, we crimp the 
free market of ideas, in order to reward those that create.  The 
granting of a Government sponsored monopoly on new expressions of ideas 
is obviously something that is a trade off away from free-market principles.

I am sure that you realize that Innovation always builds on the past, 
and incumbents likely will always try to stifle innovation.  Just has 
Newton said that he was "standing on the shoulders of Giants", almost 
any  literary or scientific progress depends on building on the 
collective knowledge that has gone before.  Folks who have control of 
that knowledge are often tempted to try and prevent others form making 
full use of that knowledge as that would represent competition to there 
hold on power.

In the current Copyright bill, the folks from the old "Recording 
Industry" have asked for some rather draconian limits on new innovation, 
limits that may not be clearly seen at first glance.  They are asking 
for Government blessing of so called "Technical Protection Measures" and 
in effect requiring that consumers buy and pay for extra technology that 
is supposed to prevent unauthorised copying.  Since the common law of 
copyright intrinsically permits many uses of copyright material, and a 
computer is certainly not smart enough to determine if a copy is being 
made for a permitted purpose, we will have a situation where Canadians 
in their own homes will be prevented from doing what is legal by "big 
Brother" technology that they have been required to pay for in order to 
access the cultural birthright we enjoy in a free society.

The truth is that while TPM can be sure "WHO" a user is there is no way 
to be actually prevent copying, just to require that the only access the 
buyer is allowed is so crippled that the buyer cannot use the recorded 
work in ways that would be lawful.

The recoding industry previously lobbied for a levy on blank media to 
cover the casual recordings that citizens make for their own use.  Such 
as making a compilation tape of their favorite music to play in the car 
tape player on a long drive.  With a riding like Mississippi Mills I 
imagine you yourself probably have your favorite music for those long 
drives around the riding.

The government says that Canadians were consulted on this legislation, 
but in fact only the legacy recording and media industry was listened 
to.  The new technology that the internet provides creates many 
opportunities for new talent to distribute there work in new ways.  Many 
Musicians who are not signed by the major record companies, or who 
indeed are unwilling to accept the terms offered (A typical artist is 
offered a small royalty for specified use of their work after the 
marketing expense is paid - and little or no control over how and even 
if their work is marketed) have embraced the new possibilities of using 
Peer-to-peer sharing of files as a way of introducing themselves to 
fans.  These folks often have business plans that depend on live 
performance and merchandise, rather than the old 1930's practice of 
selling plastic disks  with sound recordings engraved.

Our computer industry is also under attack in this bill.  There are a 
few large companies who have made large profits by selling pre-packaged 
software that almost but not quite works.  The internet has resulted in 
a new way of creating software where many people collaborate, and make 
their money from using the software rather than from licensing or 
selling the software itself. The apache webserver that runs many 
Government web sites is an example of this sort of software. 
(http://www.apache.org/)  If the consumer is required to use software 
with built in TPM to access content, the software they buy many be tied 
to what music they listen to ... A case of "Tied selling" as prohibited 
by the Competition act.  I don't see any amendments of that act in bill 
C-60 though.

I am sorry for writing such a long letter to you, but I hope that you 
will see all the barriers to a free-market that this proposal may 
creates and will prevent the government from granting more monopolies to 
rich mostly foreign controlled firms.



-- 
Charles MacDonald          Stittsville Ontario
cmacd@TelecomOttawa.net    Just Beyond the Fringe

1800+ Canadians oppose Bill C-60 which protects antiquated Recording,
  Motion Picture and "software manufacturing" industries from change...
  Sign the Petition Users' Rights! http://digital-copyright.ca/petition/

No Microsoft Products were used in sending this e-mail.
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