Story Tools: PRINT | Text Size: S M L XL | REPORT TYPO | SEND YOUR FEEDBACK

Jesse Brown: Obama the copyright cyberbully

By Jesse Brown, CBC technology columnist:

The Obama administration has placed Canada on the United States’ copyright blacklist. Under Bush, we were on their “Watch List.” Now we’re on the “Priority Watch List.”

Scary!

So what makes us a “priority”? It can’t be the numbers - even data provided by the International Intellectual Property Alliance (a lobby group who applaud Canada being blacklisted) shows software piracy levels in Canada are lower than in any other country named on either list.

Can it be because we’ve let pirates run rampant? Unlikely. As Michael Geist points out, we’ve come down harder (and dumber) on “piracy” than most countries in the world, and have some of the slightest (and stingiest) fair use exceptions around.

So what then puts us on the same list as China and Russia when it comes to copyright abuses?

One thing and one thing only: we have yet to copy America’s failed Digital Millenium Copyright Act. We have failed to replicate laws that allow record companies to sue children for downloading music. We have stalled on our vow to stumble down the same idiotic path that America has.

We didn’t do this on purpose - former Industry Minister Jim Prentice tried hard to push through a bizarre and punitive copyright bill that he himself could not explain. It would have happened too, if it were not for pesky public outrage followed by a peskier prorogue of Parliament.

But Prentice’s successor, Tony Clement, is now holding the bag and facing enormous pressure from none other than Barack Obama and Joe Biden to make the same mistake twice, only this time for keeps.

Word is that Clement is a sharper guy than his predecessor - someone who actually understands the technology he’s legislating the use of. It’s time for him to prove it by standing up to this latest round of Presidential pressure by asking Canadians what kind of copyright works for Canada, not what works for her bully.

« Previous Post | Main | Next Post »

This discussion is now Open. Submit your Comment.

Comments

JimBexelySpeed

Ottawa

The more interesting thing to look at is the WHY of illegal downloading. It's interesting to note that in line with this news item, there is talk about who can benefit from giving Canadians access to online video feeds that are blocked to people outside of the US.

While, piracy will never be fully eliminated (these copyright holders are foolish to think that they can, and your right the whole thing amounts to stupidity, and a lot of pathetic victories like taking CHILDREN to court) you can bet if increased accessability and affordability of these items, piracy would be significantly reduced.

The United States in particular increases piracy by creating these region restrictions. People are going to try and get access to stuff they cannot access, and over all else they're going to try and get it for free.

The other problem these assinine copyright laws will never be able to contend with is the fact that the technology that proliferates pirated materials is constantly changing. For each new law, and new method of prevention and tracking that's initiated, there are literally thousands of different ways these things can be cracked, or for people who want something bad enough to go unnoticed.

Posted May 1, 2009 01:51 PM

DrDuKeS

Ottawa

I would be more inclined to purchase music if I knew that the proceeds were actually supporting the artists and not the faceless record executives.

Posted May 4, 2009 03:06 PM

« Previous Post | Main | Next Post »

Post a Comment

Disclaimer:

Note: By submitting your comments you acknowledge that CBC has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Please note that due to the volume of e-mails we receive, not all comments will be published, and those that are published will not be edited. But all will be carefully read, considered and appreciated.

Note: Due to volume there will be a delay before your comment is processed. Your comment will go through even if you leave this page immediately afterwards.

Privacy Policy | Submissions Policy

Story Tools: PRINT | Text Size: S M L XL | REPORT TYPO | SEND YOUR FEEDBACK

World »

Defeated Gambian leader Yahya Jammeh made off with government money, luxury cars
Exiled Gambian ruler Yahya Jammeh stole millions of dollars in his final weeks in power, plundering the state coffers and shipping out luxury vehicles by cargo plane, a special adviser for the new president said Sunday.
Trump vows federal help as storm, tornadoes rip through southeastern U.S., killing 16
A dangerous weekend weather system has killed at least 16 people in the U.S. South. U.S. President Donald Trump has pledged federal assistance for the affected areas, and Georgia has declared a state of emergency.
Netanyahu to meet with Trump before calling vote on West Bank annexation
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delayed a vote Sunday on an explosive proposal to annex one of the West Bank's largest settlements, apparently to co-ordinate his policy toward the Palestinians with the new administration of U.S. President Donald Trump.
more »

Canada »

Analysis Inside Quebec's far right: Where do Quebec's extremist groups fit in?
The election of Donald Trump, Brexit, the electoral surge of anti-immigrant parties across Europe — many are speaking of a global far-right moment. We take a look at how Quebec compares.
New Trudeau cabinet kicks off Calgary retreat with talk of Trump, security
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his cabinet colleagues have arrived in Calgary for a three-day retreat to ready themselves for the realities of governing in the Donald Trump era, and to hear from experts who they've tapped to help guide them through a potentially tumultuous time.
Airport screening rules revamped for transgender travellers
The federal agency in charge of security at Canadian airports has changed its policy on screening for transgender travellers. But advocates worry staff haven't been properly trained to execute it.
more »

Politics »

New Trudeau cabinet kicks off Calgary retreat with talk of Trump, security
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his cabinet colleagues have arrived in Calgary for a three-day retreat to ready themselves for the realities of governing in the Donald Trump era, and to hear from experts who they've tapped to help guide them through a potentially tumultuous time.
Trudeau not the 1st politician to face heat for Aga Khan helicopter ride
Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau has been taking flak for his trip aboard Aga Khan's private helicopter, which mirrors a similar controversy that befell the Bahamas environment minister back in 2010.
Analysis Liberal cabinet retreat in Calgary well-timed as electoral tests loom
The Liberals are holding their caucus retreat in Calgary this week, a city in which the party made a breakthrough in the 2015 election. With two byelections on the horizon, will the Liberals be able to build on those Calgary gains, or will the last election prove to be their high watermark?
more »

Health »

Sorry - we can't find that page
 
CBC.ca

Sorry, we can't find the page you requested.

  1. Please check the URL in the address bar, or ...
  2. Use the navigation links at left to explore our site, or ...
  3. Enter a term in the Quick Search box at top, or ...
  4. Visit our site map page

In a few moments, you will be taken to our site map page, which will help you find what you looking for.

more »

Arts & Entertainment»

Aziz Ansari tackles Trump, Islamophobia and 'casual white supremacy' on SNL
There was no impersonation of Donald Trump by actor Alec Baldwin on Saturday Night Live this week but guest host Aziz Ansari gave his own two cents about the new president.
Ryan Gosling, Denis Villeneuve among Canadians likely to get Oscar nominations
When this year's Oscar nominations are announced on Tuesday, there's a good chance some Canadians will be prominently in the mix, most notably Quebec director Denis Villeneuve and London, Ont.-born actor Ryan Gosling.
Madonna, Scarlett Johansson, Miley Cyrus among celebs at women's marches
Scores of Hollywood A-listers showed up at huge women's marches in Washington and other cities to show support for feminism, equality and human rights.
more »

Technology & Science »

New Samsung blames Galaxy Note 7 smartphone fires on battery design, manufacturing
Samsung Electronics Co. says problems with the design and manufacturing of batteries in its Galaxy Note 7 smartphones caused them to overheat and burst into fire.
Non-browning apple coming to U.S. next month but Canada will have to wait video audio
The genetically modified non-browning apple a B.C. man has been developing for more than two decades will finally end up on some U.S. produce shelves next month. But Canada will have to wait to take its bite.
How coffee grounds turned firewood could be a lifeline for refugees video
The remnants of your morning cup of coffee could be a lifeline for refugees living in camps in sub-Saharan Africa.
more »

Money »

How to fight back against rising bank fees on chequing accounts
Canada’s big banks continue to hike personal bank fees. Many banks are also making it more difficult to avoid one of the largest and most irritating fees — that pesky chequing account charge.
Tax scams and testing 'the Trump effect': CBC Marketplace's consumer cheat sheet
If you've been too busy this week to keep up with health and consumer news, CBC's Marketplace is here to help.
Non-browning apple coming to U.S. next month but Canada will have to wait video audio
The genetically modified non-browning apple a B.C. man has been developing for more than two decades will finally end up on some U.S. produce shelves next month. But Canada will have to wait to take its bite.
more »

Consumer Life »

Sorry - we can't find that page
 
CBC.ca

Sorry, we can't find the page you requested.

  1. Please check the URL in the address bar, or ...
  2. Use the navigation links at left to explore our site, or ...
  3. Enter a term in the Quick Search box at top, or ...
  4. Visit our site map page

In a few moments, you will be taken to our site map page, which will help you find what you looking for.

more »

Sports »

[an error occurred while processing this directive]
Recap Falcons send Green Bay packing to soar into Super Bowl
Matt Ryan and Julio Jones teamed up for a dominant playoff performance, and the Atlanta Falcons ignored all those ghosts from the last half-century.
Video Kaillie Humphries training 4-woman bobsleigh crew in name of equality video
Humphries on the lack of a 4-Woman Bobsleigh event: 'I never thought that was fair.'
Analysis Adam Hadwin credits Canadian fans after joining golf's exclusive 59 club video
Adam Hadwin's blitzing of the La Quinta Country Club at a PGA Tour tournament in the California desert on Saturday is another example of the talent that exists beneath the top rung of the world's best golfers. After his round, he credited the Canadians in the crowd.
more »

Diversions »

[an error occurred while processing this directive]
more »