Here's the full text of the letter the bought ministers sent out, patting themselves on the back and denying that this is a copy of the American DMCA. This is a "Made in Canada" piece of paid for corporate shit:
The Government of Canada has introduced Bill C-61, An Act to Amend the Copyright Act. The proposed legislation is a made-in-Canada approach that balances the needs of Canadian consumers and copyright owners, promoting culture, innovation and competition in the digital age.
What does Bill C-61 mean to Canadians?
Specifically, it includes measures that would:
• expressly allow you to record TV shows for later viewing; copy legally purchased music onto other devices, such as MP3 players or cell phones; make back-up copies of legally purchased books, newspapers, videocassettes and photographs onto devices you own; and limit the "statutory damages" a court could award for all private use copyright infringements;
• implement new rights and protections for copyright holders, tailored to the Internet, to encourage participation in the online economy, as well as stronger legal remedies to address Internet piracy;
• clarify the roles and responsibilities of Internet Service Providers related to the copyright content flowing over their network facilities; and
• provide photographers with the same rights as other creators.
What Bill C-61 does not do:
• it would not empower border agents to seize your iPod or laptop at border crossings, contrary to recent public speculation
What this Bill is not:
• it is not a mirror image of U.S. copyright laws. Our Bill is made-in-Canada with different exceptions for educators, consumers and others and brings us into line with more than 60 countries including Japan, France, Germany and Australia
Bill C-61 was introduced in the Commons on June 12, 2008 by Industry Minister Jim Prentice and Heritage Minister Josée Verner.
For more information, please visit the Copyright Reform Process website at www.ic.gc.ca/epic/site/crp-prda.nsf/en/home
Thank you for sharing your views on this important matter.
The Honourable Jim Prentice, P.C., Q.C., M.P. Minister of Industry
The Honourable Josée Verner, P.C., M.P. Minister of Canadian Heritage, Status of Women and Official Languages and Minister for La Francophonie
You and I and your friends, we're all guilty. Sarah McLachlan, The Barenaked Ladies, Canada's actual "Made in Canada" music industry, the artists and publishers that aren't owned by usurious conglomerates from off shore, all opposed this legislative atrocity and were ignored. Canada's educators and libraries were ignored. Canadian innovators, technologists and entrepreneurs were ignored. Prentice, Verner and their gang have no interest in Canada's technological future. They serviced their crooked masters behind closed boardroom doors. Welcome to the digital lockdown.
It is now of vital importance that we, at the grass roots, fight this proposed legislation. Our Members of Parliament must hear our voices, since Prentice and Verner chose not to. Bill C-61 is not acceptable. The petty consumer exceptions are defeated by the absolute exceptions afforded media distibutors by making anti-circumvention and DRM sacrosanct. You are not allowed to back up your bought and paid for media if the corporate master says no. You can't shift it to another device, you can't use it as you choose and now there will be a regime of litigation to enforce the hideous EULAs attached to everything.
Links to visit:
Today Harper’s Conservatives introduced legislation that would make Canadian copyright the most repressive in the free world. This, sadly, is neither rhetoric, nor sensationalism.
Many within the cultural community feared a draconian new legislation. Bill C-61 surpasses those fears. If passed Bill C-61 would make Canada the only democracy in history to have criminalized a recognized and legitimate art form. An art form criminalized not for its content, but for the process of its making. Today the Conservative Government erased much of the artistic discourse of the past 100 years. Today (with TPM’s) the Conservative Government locked Canadian culture firmly in the past.
As expected, Prentice has provided a series of attention-grabbing provisions to consumers including time shifting, private copying of music (transferring a song to your iPod), and format shifting (changing format from analog to digital). These are good provisions that did not exist in the delayed December bill. However, check the fine print since the rules are subject to a host of strict limitations and, more importantly, undermined by the digital lock provisions. The effect of the digital lock provisions is to render these rights virtually meaningless in the digital environment because anything that is locked down (ie. copy-controlled CD, no-copy mandate on a digital television broadcast) cannot be copied. As for every day activities like transferring a DVD to your iPod - those are infringing too. Indeed, the law makes it an infringement to circumvent the locks for these purposes.
Back in the simpler times of the copyright debate, like, in 2002, Industry Canada set out a “long-term reform agenda”, defining “long-term” as “beyond 4 years”, an agenda which included “clarifying and simplifying the [Copyright] Act”.
And now, “beyond 4 years” later, we know can report how well that worked out.
The existing Copyright Act, after being stripped of some of its superfluous ornamentation, is 35,967 words long in the English-language version of the text.
Bill C-61, as tabled today at First Reading in the House of Commons, will replace or repeal 2,055 words of the current consolidated statute, and insert, instead of, or in addition thereto, 12,731 words.
That’s a net increase of 10,676 words. That’s 30% increase in the size of the Copyright Act.
Or, put another way, the amendments contained in Bill C-61 alone – just the amendments, not the existing Copyright Act, not the Copyright Act that will result from the amendments — the text of the amendments alone is fifty percent larger than the entire newly-enacted Israeli Copyright Act, and thirty percent larger than the entire Copyright Act of Canada was when first enacted in 1921.
Digital Copyright Canada:
Having a chance for a quick read of Bill C-61, I can say that it will likely be decades before we fully understand how this bill will be interpreted by the courts. Contrary to what the Minister claimed, this bill reduces certainty in the marketplace, not increases it.
The largest portion of this bill is a Canadian DMCA, which is to say an implementation of the 2 1996 WIPO treaties and an ISP liability regime. The ISP liability regime is similar to the Liberal Bill C-60 from 2005 in that it codifies the current voluntary regime used by ISPs which is notice-and-notice.
This bill is a torpedo aimed at your rights and will cripple artists, innovation and fair use in this country. It puts satire in peril. Hell, Bill C-61 makes collage illegal. This is about criminalizing and controlling consumers and guarantees a regime of predatory litigation the likes of which this country has never seen. I implore you to visit the links above and to further investigate the contents of the originating sights. Inform yourselves, see what is at risk if this law is allowed to pass. Let your M.P. know that you will not let this bill pass without protest. Do not believe the lies coming from government and industry. This law does not protect artists, it props up the industries and robber barons that prey on artists. There is a good reason why the homegrown music industry walked away from groups like the CRIA, an industry sock puppet that was working to betray our rights and freedoms as creators. As a singer songwriter, this legislation is a huge roadblock in the path of furthering my creative endeavours.
Copyright For Canadians has a handy widget for locating your M.P. write them, email them, call or drop by their offices and register your objections. Write to the leaders of the parties and the appropriate ministers and critics and let them know that Bill C-61 is not acceptable to Canadians. And certainly remind our friends in the Liberal Party of Canada that this would be exactly the wrong time to roll over and present their well used buttocks to the government. It is high time Her Majesty's Loyal Opposition grew some hind legs and stood up upon them. Anything less than opposition on this issue is just another betrayal of Canada.
[CC HERE, after PSA graciously gave me permission to add a little something.]
There are all kinds of ways to complain about this hideously crappy piece of legislation, but one of the easiest ways to attack it is to show whether Minister of Industry Jiminy Prentice simply lied. Consider this quote:
Our Bill is made-in-Canada with different exceptions for educators, consumers and others and brings us into line with more than 60 countries including Japan, France, Germany and Australia.
OK, that's a fairly clear-cut claim there, isn't it -- that this legislation is functionally similar to that of a number of other countries listed. Therefore, it behooves one (who has the time, as I'm still kinda swamped) to make those comparisons, and demonstrate whether that claim is indeed true.
And you'll note that this approach is in no way biased or subjective -- it should be easily verifiable whether or not Prentice's claim stands up to scrutiny or not. So, take it away. Who's got some time on their hands?