The Future of Canadian Copyright Looks Bright

Canada updated its copyright laws in 2012, with the mandate that the new provisions be reviewed in 5 years. Over the past 2 years the Canadian government has been studying the impacts of the law (the comments we submitted last December can be found here) and recently issued a very reasonable set of recommendations for modest improvements to the law.

Canadian scholar Michael Geist summarized the report better than we ever could here. His summary of the key takeaways are:

  • expansion of fair dealing by making the current list of fair dealing purposes illustrative rather than exhaustive (the “such as” approach)
  • rejection of new limits on educational fair dealing with further study in three years
  • retention of existing Internet safe harbour rules
  • rejection of the FairPlay site blocking proposal with insistence that any blocking include court oversight
  • expansion of the anti-circumvention rules by permitting circumvention of digital locks for purposes that are lawful (ie. permit circumvention to exercise fair dealing rights)
  • extend the term of copyright only if ratifying the USCMA and include a registration requirement for the additional 20 years implement
  • a new informational analysis exception
  • further study of statutory damages for all copyright collectives along with greater transparency
  • adoption of an open licence rather than the abolition of crown copyright

We are very pleased to see Canada moving towards more flexibility in their fair dealing regime, open licenses for government works, and registration requirements for longer terms and away from draconian site blocking and filtering proposals. We hope these reasonable recommendations will be followed by the Canadian Parliament.

10 thoughts on “The Future of Canadian Copyright Looks Bright

  1. Nemo

    I’m sorry, but as long as a copyright extension by 20 years is on the table I’m unable to feel uplifted.

    1. Jacob

      Right, the copyright terms are already way too long, a work is public domain only after all the authors have died more than 70 years ago in most countries, I guess Canada didn’t want to “stay behind”.

    1. Jacob

      I don’t know, who benefits from having works “protected” under Copyright for people deceased 70 or more years?

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  3. Adam

    Heard the news on torrentfreak:

    They acknowledged the EU’s copyright after Article 13 (renumbered to 17) that crippled safe harbor provision by making platforms liable for their user’s actions if copyrighted material happens to be re-uploaded the second time after it was taken down. They also noted Article 11 (renumbered 15) that would lead to link tax for simply copying a small snippet for preview. And yes, Canada said NO to forcing online service providers (OSP) to either license the content or “make sure it stays down in the future”.

    They also reject site blocking, concerning Net Neutrality. In the U.S in 2011 to 2012, SOPA was a thing that mentioned this:

    No cause of action shall lie in any Federal or State court or administrative agency against, no person may rely in any claim or cause of action against, and no liability for damages to any person shall be granted against, a service provider, payment network provider, Internet advertising service, advertiser, Internet search engine, domain name registry, or domain name registrar for taking any action described in section 102(c)(2), section 103(d)(2), or section 103(b) with respect to an Internet site, or otherwise voluntarily blocking access to or ending financial affiliation with an Internet site, in the reasonable belief that—

    (1) the Internet site is a foreign infringing site or is an Internet site dedicated to theft of U.S. property; and

    (2) the action is consistent with the entity’s terms of service or other contractual rights.”

    Basically, OSP can act like vigilantes to block or suspend user from getting into such sites. That also can be abused to block legitimate sites, this also a Net Neutrality concern (until Ajit Pai killed it in 2018).

    In simple terms, Canada says no to Article 13 (17) and SOPA.

  4. Henry Massingale

    I will make a statement, all so, from the time that Canada became involved in the UN Global Migration Compact, which does included the IFPI Copyright laws from the EU. This is Facts not fiction.
    The protest in Canada, against the Copyright forum, they state it is to censor information of their protest against the UN and IFPI joined at the hip.
    The information has all ready been released.
    The foundation of the UN is by allies of the British and America. Along with the EU. For all to many years people state the UN is building the NWO, this is a fact.
    What they are doing is pitting Muslims against others, building hate. I do not hate Muslims. I hate the person that pushes hate, and uses hate.
    These copyright laws are basically censorship, as if they are trying to say, We have your best interest at hand. If you find a video,music or a image under Creative Commons,they state prove where it came from, and if it was created by you.
    I say, prove it was not created by me. Seeing how we move closer to a one world government, and the use of more copyright laws, infringe on freedom of speech, which allows people from Canada, or the EU, to share information against what they consider wrong.
    “Multiculturalism” is the co-existence of diverse cultures, where culture includes racial, religious, or cultural groups and is manifested in customary behaviours, cultural assumptions and values, patterns of thinking, and communicative styles.
    At one time it was just a thing, people living in peace, falling in love,talking over issues, today it is used as a weapon of hate, for one race of people, one voice, one religion, one world order.
    My statement here in a collective of a opinion, it holds weight, and a truth.
    Final statement to the elite, stop the hate, stop pitting brothers against each other. And stop with the new EU copyrights laws that state, people can not re- share the news. When a image from Canada shares a truth, and words have meaning.

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