Canadian Conservatives vow to implement new copyright law

Canadian Conservatives vow to implement new copyright law

Summary: Candians who vote to re-elect the Conservative government next week will also be voting for an archly pro-copyright agenda.


Candians who vote to re-elect the Conservative government next week will also be voting for an archly pro-copyright agenda. According to the party's official platform released yesterday:

A re-elected Conservative government led by Stephen Harper will reintroduce federal copyright legislation that strikes the appropriate balance among the rights of musicians, artists, programmers and other creators and brings Canada's intellectual property protection in line with that of other industrialized countries, but also protects consumers who want to access copyright works for their personal use.

We will also introduce tougher laws on counterfeiting and piracy and give our customs and law enforcement services the resources to enforce them. This will protect consumers from phoney and sometimes dangerous products that are passed off as reliable brand-name goods.

The CBC reports that the proposed legislation – which Harper's party had planned to introduce last year but withdrew under fire – includes serious fines for illegal downloaders and makes it a crime to circumvent DRM.
"There's a fine line between protecting creators and a police state," Liberal industry critic Scott Brison told at the time.

Law professor Michael Geist stopped the legislation from moving forward in December with a Facebook protest group that gathered tens of thousands of sign-ups and forced the Conservatives to retreat.

This time around Geist has created a Copyright Pledge he is asking Canadian politicians to support:

Will you commit to a balanced approach to copyright reform that reflects the views of all Canadians by pledging: 1. To respect the rights of creators and consumers. 2. Not to support any copyright bill that undermines or weakens the Copyright Act’s users rights. 3. To fully consult with Canadians before introducing any copyright reform bill and to conduct inclusive, national hearings on any tabled bill.

He's been gathering support at a pretty good clip, although not from Conservatives. He's published lists of supporting pols: 1, 2, 3.

Topics: Legal, CXO, Enterprise Software, Government, Government US, Piracy, Security, Software

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  • Canadian Politics

    are worse than we ever thought of having in this country. The vows they make are seldom carried out for one grand reason or another. I live on the border and have watched both sides of it.
    • Promise made promise kept

      If you look at the Conservative party platform on page 14 you will notice that the statement that is effectively about Bill C-61 and ACTA was immediately below a picture of someone holding up a sign saying "promise made promise kept".

      While all the parties sometimes break promises, it is telling that the Conservative party considers this controversial and harmful law something that is worthy of a promise.
  • Conservatives abandoning own values

    I have authored a related article titled:

    Technology law suggests that conservatives shouldn't vote Conservative

    I believe that the Conservative party support for anti-circumvention legislation represents the abandoning in the digital age of some of the principles the party was founded on.

    I also really wonder when politics flipped on its head and self-called "conservative" parties are the ones most strongly pushing for a government managed economy.
  • That is part of the deal with parliamentary government

    But the interests of consumers are going to be taken a lot more seriously if Canadians actually write their MPs about it. At any rate, if voters treat parliamentary candidates as mere surrogates for their respective parties' candidates for Prime Minister, then they shouldn't be surprised if they vote the party line once they're elected.
    John L. Ries
  • RE: Canadian Conservatives vow to implement new copyright law

    I believe most of the people out there who have heard of the law but haven't read the details support it in order to punish the illegal downloaders. They do not realize that they might also be harmed by it in many different ways. Educate your family, friends, and co-workers about it. Spread the word.