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[d@DCC] The different sides of new technology like "podcasting".

From: Russell McOrmond <russell _-at-_ flora.ca>
To: soundslikecanada (at) cbc.ca
Cc: General Copyright Discussions <discuss -_at_- list.digital-copyright.ca>, m-c -_at_- mcturgeon.com
Date: Thu, 17 Nov 2005 11:35:28 -0500 (EST)

   I am excited to hear fellow creative Canadians talking with excitement 
about things such as "podcasting".  Sounds Like Canada 
http://www.cbc.ca/soundslikecanada/ interviewed Marie-Chantale Turgeon 
http://www.mcturgeon.com/ about how she is now able to very cheaply create 
and communicate some of her own work without needing the very expensive, 
and very centrally controlled, infrastructure from the past.

   In economic terms, new communications technologies have allowed the 
marginal cost -- the cost per additional unit -- for the reproduction and 
distribution of creativity to approach zero.  Using peer production 
techniques we are also able to greatly reduce the fixed costs of 
production as well.

   This is a massive opportunity for most Canadians.  I am a software and 
non-software literary author who has embraced newer business models which 
harness this economic reality.  By using business models which charge a 
one-time fee for my work, allowing the marginal price to be the marginal 
cost of zero, I never have to worry about the social, economic, and legal 
costs of counting copies.

   What is good for me is obviously a competitive threat to the 
established media, content and "software manufacturing" industries. They 
have launched a massive worldwide offensive against any competitor using 
alternative methods of production, distribution and funding of creativity 
and innovation.

   I am curious what Marie-Chantale would say to the federal Government 
about Bill C-60 which seeks to protect the incumbent industries from 
competition from people like her and I.  Where the Heritage Minister and 
other government officials have claimed that this act is about reducing 
copyright infringement, abusing the politically loaded and inaccurate term 
"theft", this bill is really about protecting established businesses from 
much needed modernization.

   Since the tools for creativity are being put into the hands of average 
Canadians, Copyright should be simplified so that we don't need a team of 
lawyers to protect our rights. Unfortunately the government seems intent 
on making copyright more complex, more expensive, and to only benefit the 
largest companies and their lawyers.

   Some unscrupulous large copyright holders, such as Sony-BMG, have 
decided that it is OK to install harmful software on our computers.  This 
is the type of activity of criminals such as virus authors, and yet the 
Canadian government is offering legal protection for this type of 
"technical measure" when used by copyright holders.  These types of 
"technical measures" have nothing to do with Copyright law, and are really 
attempts to enforce (often secret) contracts. Like any type of contract we 
need to both protect valid contracts as well as protect consumers from 
invalid and/or harmful contracts.

   Sony-BMG is currently being sued in a class-action lawsuit by music fans 
whose computers were damaged by a series of recent "music" CDs containing 
mis-named "Copy Control" technology.  The claim from Sony-BMG that they 
were only protecting their copyright is further made suspect by evidence 
suggesting that they were infringing the copyright of various software 
authors on the same CD.


Russell McOrmond
Webmaster for http://digital-copyright.ca

BLOG topic on "Digital Restrictions Management" (DRM)
http://www.digital-copyright.ca/taxonomy/term/359

Bill C-60 BLOG
http://www.digital-copyright.ca/billc60/blog

-- 
  Russell McOrmond, Internet Consultant: <http://www.flora.ca/>
  2359+ Canadians oppose Bill C-60. This bill protects antiquated Recording,
  Motion Picture and "software manufacturing" industries from modernization.
  http://KillBillC60.ca    Sign--> http://digital-copyright.ca/petition/
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