Creators' Rights Alliance / Creators' Copyright Coalition

Next steps for the art resale right?

The first amendment moved during clause-by-clause consideration of Bill C-11 was an NDP amendment to introduce resale rights (See March 12 minutes for exact wording). This is a policy that the Liberal party has supported in the past. The chair ruled the amendment inadmissible as it was a new concept that is beyond the scope of Bill C-11.

Before proponents of the resale right take that as a failure, the process needs to be looked at more closely. This is also a good time to more publicly discuss the policy being proposed. Multiple bills on the same topic are not admissible within the same session of parliament. When the chair ruled the amendment inadmissible, he was effectively also ruling that tabling that policy as a private members bill would be admissible within this session.

Would an art resale right be good policy?

fear v. education

Meera Nair posted a great article about misinformation on fair dealings.

"It is disappointing to read of the continued distortion of fair dealing through the call to action of The Writers’ Union of Canada and Access Copyright. But I am not surprised; it is much easier to provoke fear than to embark upon the longer journey of educating people."

Mixed and conflicting bag of policies from ACTRA

The following was posted as a comment to an article about the Network Neutrality hearings.

ACTRA’s “Myths & Truths” debunked…

It is unfortunate that creators are having to bypass their associations and unions and speak directly to the public (and fellow members) to have their voices heard. Some have gone so far as to create their own associations, like the members of the CMCC and Appropriation Art. (Sadly, the Creators' Copyright Coalition still includes these in their membership counts with their claims that the all-powerful "silent majority" support them).

I'm reading a BLOG from ACTRA member Jason Chesworth who has debunked ACTRA’s “Myths & Truths” following a post on ACTRA and the death of the mixed tape that is yet another example of this.

Geist to blame for loss of HNIC theme? What?

This weekend's blog entry on by Christopher Moore comments on the recent cancellation of the Hockey Night In Canada theme song by CBC. Unfortunately it puts so much political spin into the issue as to make even the likes of David Frum dizzy.

Clarity would go a long way to calm CopyFight.

The May 17'th issue of the Globe and Mail features an article by John Degen titled Who needs copyright, anyway? He suggests that the panic about copyright from all sides of the debate is false, and talks about his own transition from being one of those fighting the CopyFight to someone who is now releasing his book royalty-free (and DRM-free) on the Internet.

One comment stuck with me in the essay, which is that copyright critics often comment on his BLOG in what seem like attacks. The reason why this is the case should be taken as a compliment by John. He gets the bulk of the commentary not because he is seen as the strongest "enemy" of those who see copyright differently, but because he is one of the few people seen to be on a given "side" of the debate that is willing to have open dialog with the public.

Read the rest of this entry on IT World Canada's BLOG »

Recognizing a policy problem doesn't suggest agreement on solutions

A few hours after posting my article on the content industry vs content delivery providers I was sent a link to an article titled "Raging Grannies demonstrate for fair contracts for freelancers" by its author, journalist Shannon Lee Mannion. The contracts that the big media companies are asking freelance journalists to sign are getting worse and worse all the time. I feel really bad about this situation, and I do anything I can in my policy work to help improve the situation for authors -- especially freelance creators given I am one myself with my self-employed business.

I am left with mixed feelings, however, because I believe that the organizations that should be helping authors -- organizations like the Professional Writers Association of Canada (PWAC), The Writers Union, and other members of the Creators Copyright Coalition and DAMIC -- have been promoting policies which will have the effect of protecting or worsening the market conditions that enabled these bad contracts in the first place.

Read full article on IT World Canada's BLOG »

Real-world experience important for politicians and other policy makers/promoters

Reading a press release from Timmins-James Bay MP Charlie Angus, you will see the following:

"Angus is one of the only MPs who has relied on income from copyright royalties from music, book and textbook sales to make a living. He says the New Democratic Party strongly supports fair remuneration for artists but that copyright must be looking forward to the 21st century reality rather than attempting to force consumers back to an obsolete 20th century business model."

It is interesting to note that while federal Members of Parliament come from many walks of life, most of those who are vocal on technology law have very little experience with the relevant technology, or businesses affected by them. Musician and author Charlie Angus stands out as an exception.

Read full article on IT World Canada's BLOG »

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