Conservative Party of Canada

Throne speech: Conservative government will "improve the protection" of Copyright.

As I expected and worried about, Copyright was mentioned in the Throne Speech. The Conservatives mentioned earlier that anything mentioned in the speech will be considered confidence motions when they become bills.

From the text of the speech:

To complement this, our Government will support Canadian researchers and innovators in developing new ideas and bringing them to the marketplace through Canada’s Science and Technology Strategy. Our Government will improve the protection of cultural and intellectual property rights in Canada, including copyright reform.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper announces intention to prorogue Parliament

A press release confirms that:

Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced today that he will be recommending to Governor General Michaëlle Jean that Parliament be prorogued, thus ending the First Session of the 39th Parliament. Parliament will be recalled on October 16 to commence the Second Session with a Speech from the Throne.

Digital rights activists might want to watch the throne speech closely as it might indicate directions on technology law issues, such as upcoming "Copyright" (and Paracopyright) legislation.

Conservative Government doesn't rule out ignoring property rights to protect legacy business models

I received today the response to a batch of signatures to the Petition to protect Information Technology Property rights. The response is from May 7, 2007 and signed by then Industry Minister Maxime Bernier. While our petition is about protecting tangible technology property rights against circumvention by third parties, the response indicated that they considered the subject matter to be "copyright".

Prime Minister Harper presents new Ministry

Prime Minister Harper presents new Ministry (See Press release). Changes include past Heritage Minister Bev Oda moving to Minister of International Cooperation, past Industry Minister Maxime Bernier moving to Minister of Foreign Affairs, with Honourable Josée Verner taking over Heritage and Honourable Jim Prentice taking over Industry.

DMCA hitchikes north to Canada, catches a lift with Conservatives

An Ars Technica article by Nate Anderson talks about the recent news that the Conservatives plan to table a bill that is likely to be even worse, and less respectful of property rights, than the Liberal Bill C-60.

See also: im addicted BLOG.

Conservative Party copyright scandal points to need for Fair Use in Canada!

In what should be a clear case of "Fair Use" in copyright law for political commentary, the Conservative Party of Canada may find themselves in a copyright scandal caused by the fact that Canadians don't currently enjoy a robust Fair Use regime like our American neighbours, just a far more limited Fair Dealings regime.

Oda Funding Controversy May Derail Broadcast and Copyright Policy

Mr Geist's weekly Law Bytes column (Toronto Star version, homepage version) takes stock off the brewing controversy over Canadian Heritage Minister Bev Oda's fundraising activities. With the Hill Times running a lead story on her 2005 fundraiser and persistent questions in the House of Commons, it is becoming apparent that this issue is quickly becoming a liability for the Conservative government.

Charlie Angus, MP for Timmins--James Bay and Heritage Critic for the NDP, has been the person raising the profile of this issue in the House of Commons.

Heritage, Industry ministers stars of fundraiser co-organized by media exec

A Canadian Press article by Jennifer Ditchburn includes:

A broadcasting executive is helping to stage a re-election fundraiser for Heritage Minister Bev Oda, who's reviewing television policy for the Tory government.

Please see an update from Michael Geist.

Small-c conservative MP blogger kicked out of Conservative party for being too transparent?

I would like to hear feedback from our community on this. The Turner Report is a BLOG from the MP from Halton (Ontario), and this is clearly an MP that we should be talking to as he better understands modern technology. Unfortunately his being transparent to the public got him in hot water. (See: Globe and Mail , CTV. , Toronto Star , CP via Toronto Star)

Many stories suggest that he was kicked out of the caucus for his views. My question is this: While we know the views of someone transparent enough to have a daily BLOG, what do we really know about the other 307 MPs?

Law Commission of Canada abandoned by Conservative government

The following is from the English homepage:

The Law Commission of Canada was informed on the 25th of September, 2006, of the federal government’s decision to eliminate the Commission’s funding. Over the past nine years, the Commission engaged Canadians in the process of law reform through the forging of productive networks among academic and other communities while consulting the public through various innovative means. The Commission is currently assessing the best way to address the ramifications of this announcement on staff and partners and will provide more details in a forthcoming press release.

I was familiar with the LCC primarily because of their work on electoral reform. Articles in the National Post and Canada.com list some of the other announced program cuts.

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