Ottawa Citizen: Singing the blues

Canadian singers and songwriters who don't want to adapt to new technology were ably represented on Parliament Hill last week, but that doesn't mean the government should keep the rest of us in the Dark Ages.

Read full article online...

Toronto Star: Numbers don't crunch against downloading

Michael Geist's Lawbytes column includes:

In fact, perhaps the best evidence yet of the tenuous link between file sharing and music sales comes from the music industry's performance following the Federal Court of Canada's file sharing decision denying CRIA's demand to disclose the identities of 29 alleged file sharers at the end of March of this year. Despite the dire predictions that the decision would decimate music sales, the six-month period following the decision saw CD unit sales jump by 12.4 per cent in Canada over the prior year.

Mr. James Rajotte and Hon. Liza Frulla speak in support of WIPO treaty ratification...

From the Hansard for Friday, November 26, 2004. Obviously letters from constituents and other Canadians are needed to inform these members that what the recording industry is asking for will not help Canadian musicians, but harm them.

A letter was sent in response.

Music Industry

Mr. James Rajotte (Edmonton—Leduc, CPC): Mr. Speaker, in 1996 the government signed the World Intellectual Property Organization treaty. The treaty was necessary to update our copyright laws to ensure that our artists such as Tom Cochrane, Amy Sky and Blue Rodeo received fair compensation for the music they create.

The Conservative Party supports amending our copyright laws to be in accordance with international standards. Don't get mad at musicians & Big Music Canada fiasco has two related features. Don't get mad at musicians by Russell McOrmond:

Musicians and music fans must come together and fight the recording industry. We must never let the dinosaurs be in charge of evolution.

And Big Music Canada fiasco by Jon Newton

Musicians demand Ottawa protect them from music piracy?

That should read, Canadians demand Ottawa protect them from Big Music.

Music in Canada Coalition

While I don't yet have a website address for Music in Canada, I wanted to create an article where we can post all the links I can find about them. There is a huge educational campaign needed of the musician members who are being duped by the misleading policy suggestions of the big-label recording industry associations.

* DCC forum: Music in Canada Coalition / Heritage meeting

* Response from Neil Leyton (Singer/songwriter, Indy label) of Fading Ways . Letter also published on his fan BBS.

Torvalds Dubbed Most Influential Executive of 2004

CRN has named Linus Torvalds the most influential executive of 2004. IBM's Palmisano is #2, and Microsoft's Ballmer is #3.

I sent a message to the Industry Minister and critics to let them know that the most influential executive of 2004 is also a strong opponent to software patents.

CAUT Bulletin: Copyright Reform is Not a Spectator Sport

This bulletin by Michael Geist includes:

In other words, Canada spends billions of tax dollars on research only to "buy back" that funded research through the marketplace or by subsidizing universities, who are effectively forced to repurchase their own research through journal subscriptions.

The U.S. faces the same dilemma. A group of 25 Nobel prize winners recently issued a public letter calling on Congress to link public research funding with public dissemination of the results.

eWeek: GPL 3 to Take on IP, Patents

This article by Peter Galli includes:

"[[Trust is] a critical point and extends well beyond the IT industry," said Zymaris. "We, as IT professionals, must act as stewards for the coming century, which, more than any previous era, will be built atop information technology. If we want a free society in the future, we must prevent any organization or collective from attaining such a level of immense control over the platforms of the future."

Wired: 'Music Is Not a Loaf of Bread'

This Wired interview by Xeni Jardin includes:

Giving away an album online isn't the way most artists end up with gold records. But it worked out that way for Wilco.


By conventional industry logic, file sharing hurts the odds for commercial success. Wilco front man Jeff Tweedy disagrees. Wired News caught up with him during his current tour to find out just what makes Wilco so wired.

New York Times: Do New Drugs Always Have to Cost So Much?

This NYT article by Eduardo Porter includes:

One alternative is to have the government pay directly for research, which some economists say could maintain innovation while reducing drug prices. The government already spends almost $30 billion a year on basic drug research at National Institutes of Health laboratories and at universities, much of which results in new drugs. It would be relatively straightforward to extend this to cover the research now done in drug company labs, economists say.

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