Canadian DMCA - A Betrayal

Sharing copyrighted materials is what libraries do all the time.  That’s the business they’re in.  So why can’t we privately do what libraries do publicly?

If I have a book I think you’ll like, I should be able to lend it to you.  Same with a DVD or a CD.  What’s copyright have to do with it?

Thanks for the clarification.  I guess the beurocrats get steamed when one copies copywritten material.  Being an open source software user I get nonplussed by copywrite law.

when are they trying to push this through? I thought it was before they go on their break?

why have high speed then… lol…

I can say for absolute certainty this is NOT true.

Anyway, I agree that this law is stupid and generally being proposed to appease the RIAA and MPAA.  It’s not even about the copyrights anymore.  It all amounts to money for them.  Maybe if they hadn’t been putting out shoddy products for the last 20 years, they wouldn’t need to be worrying about this now.

[quote]The use and distribution of the libdvdcss library is controversial in a few countries such as the United States because of a law called the DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act). If you are unsure about the legality of using and distributing this library in your country, please consult your lawyer.

Beware: VLC media player binaries are distributed with the libdvdcss library included. [/quote]


So yeah, you can’t legally download VLC in the USA.  If you do, you’re breaking the law.

This number is illegal to publish in the USA:

It will be illegal to publish that number (for example, on HTMF) if the proposed law is passed.  It’s the encryption key for decrypting DVDs.

You never said that the first time.  You said, “Ever wonder why you can’t?”  You can, doesn’t make it legal, but you can.

I don’t like to play semantics, but the way you said it the first time, made it sound like you can’t download it at all in the US.

Industry Minister Jim Prentice said the gov’t will not be enforcing the law, it will be up to copyright holders. “No one will be filing a lawsuit to collect $500”.
Hahaha. I feel so much better.
So does Mark Emery. Canada wasn’t enforcing that law either, until de Massah called from Washington…

From Michael Geist:

The Canadian DMCA: A Betrayal
Friday June 13, 2008
Having had a few more hours to think about Industry Minister Jim Prentice’s Canadian DMCA, I am left with one dominant feeling - betrayal.  I have already highlighted the key provisions and coverage (and note that it will take some time to fully assess the implications of this bill) but it is immediately apparent that the concerns of thousands of Canadians - now over 45,000 on the Fair Copyright for Canada Facebook group alone - have been realized.  If enacted, the Canadian DMCA would strongly encourage the use of technological locks and lawsuits. While Prentice has given a handful of new rights to Canadian consumers, each is subject to many limitations and undermined by the digital locks provisions that may effectively render the new rights meaningless. 

So why is it a betrayal?
Because in a country whose Supreme Court of Canada has emphasized the importance of balance between creators rights and user rights, the Canadian DMCA eviscerates user rights in the digital environment by virtually eliminating fair dealing.  Under this bill, the right to copy for the purposes of research, private study, criticism, and news reporting virtually disappears if the underlying content is digitally locked.

Because in a country that rightly promotes the importance of education, the Canadian DMCA erects new barriers for teachers, students, and schools at every level who now face the prospect of infringement claims if they want to teach using digital media.

Because in a country that prioritizes privacy, the Canadian DMCA will render it virtually impossible to protect against the invasion of privacy by digital media companies.  The bill includes an exemption for those that circumvent digital locks to protect their privacy, yet renders the tools needed to circumvent illegal.  In other words, the bill gives Canadians the right to protect their privacy but prohibits the tools needed to do so.

Because in a country that values consumer rights, the Canadian DMCA means that consumers no longer control their own personal property.  That CD or DVD or e-book or cellphone you just bought?  The bill says you now have the right to engage in “private use copying” but not if it contains digital locks.

Because the Conservative Party of Canada promised to Stand Up for Canada, yet the Canadian DMCA is quite clearly U.S.-inspired legislation, the result of intense pressure from U.S. officials and lobby groups.

Because the government pledged to table treaties for House of Commons debate before introducing implementing legislation and failed to do so.  Claims that this legislation does not ratify the treaties violates the spirit of that commitment.

Because ratification of the World Intellectual Property Organization’s Internet Treaties can be accomplished in a far more balanced manner.

Because countries such as New Zealand and Israel have demonstrated that there is no need to blindly follow U.S. demands on the copyright file.

Because the interests of individual Canadians - including those calling for more flexible fair dealing - is completely ignored.

Because the Canadian DMCA was introduced without consulting consumer groups, education groups, civil society groups, or the Canadian public.

Because Jim Prentice knows better.  He saw first-hand the passion of Canadians calling for balanced copyright and has received thousands of calls and letters on the issue.  Yet rather than genuinely working to craft a balanced solution, he opted to release a fatally flawed bill.

Despite all that, I still also harbour some optimism. The events of the past six months have demonstrated conclusively that Canadians care about balanced copyright even if the Industry Minister does not.  Over the coming months, I firmly believe that we will see the fair copyright movement expand well beyond what has been just built.  We will see Canadian musicians, songwriters, artists, and filmmakers speak out against this legislation.  We will see companies of all sizes and all sectors speak out against this legislation.  We will see the privacy groups, education groups, and consumer rights groups speak out against this legislation.  We will see the NDP speak out against this legislation.  We will see the Liberals - who are already focusing on the lack of consultation and the prospect of a police state - ultimately identify their Bill C-60 as a better approach and speak out against this legislation.  We will see Conservative MPs from coast to coast (including the Conservative candidate from the forthcoming Guelph by-election) wonder why their party has introduced a bill that runs counter to their own policies and (quietly) speak out against this legislation.

We will see thousands of Canadians speak out against this legislation again and again and again until it is changed.

The Canadian DMCA is a kick in the gut to Canadians everywhere.  But I believe we will get back up and demand better.  Start now.

Write to your MP, the Industry Minister, the Canadian Heritage Minister, and the Prime Minister.  If you send an email, be sure to print it out and drop a copy in the mail.  If you are looking for a sample letter, visit Copyright for Canadians.

Take 30 minutes from your summer to meet directly with your MP.  From late June through much of the summer, your MP will be back in your community attending local events and making themselves available to meet with constituents.  Give them a call and ask for a meeting.  Every MP in the country should return to Ottawa in the fall having heard from their constituents on this issue.

If you are not a member of the Fair Copyright for Canada Facebook group, join.  If you are, consider joining or starting a local chapter and be sure to educate your friends and colleagues about the issue.

Fair Copyright for Canada Facebook group:

write your MP: … x?Menu=HOC

Sample letter:

Yeah until they charge someone with sharing or downloading hundreds of songs at $500 per song. …

thanks MiG for the links I feel very strong about this issue too, and if it passes will feel let down by this government.

Check this out: … et-master/

My kid dancing to that dumb Numa Numa song.  On youtube, so that his relatives in other parts of the world can see it.

It’s called “fair dealing” (“fair use” in the US).  Currently, if someone wants to sue me for using that song, they would have to prove, in court, that I’ve cost them money.  Of course, I haven’t.

If this new law passes, the fact that I’ve uploaded that video of the kid dancing with a copyrighted song would make me a criminal.  I would have a criminal record, and I would face fines of about $20,000 or so.  There would be no need to show damages, no need to prove that I’ve cost anybody anything.

Your avatar would cost you a big fine, Astrothug, as would mine.  We’re using copyrighted material without permission.  We’re pirating those images.

Call or e-mail your MP today.  I’m e-mailing Nathan Cullen another message.

this is all rather scary, I would like to know how I would help out?

Oh Lord, just add it to the list, man. It’s just a let down hidden in a haystack of outright betrayals.

E-mail Nathan Cullen if you live in his riding:  Even a one line “Please vote against bill C-61” would do it.  But there are sample letters in the link above.

E-mail the Prime Minister.  Get informed and educated about the issue, tell your friends.

Visit for all kinds of links.

I’ve already sent an email and snail-mail to my MP (who sent back a great email within 18 hours, urging me to mail both the minister in charge of the bill and the PM about it) and I’m going to urge my friends to so the same.

Here’s something of interest

[attachments over a year old automatically deleted]

Ok, so this is another little nugget in the new copyright law:

You have the right to record TV shows (as long as there is no “don’t record” flag set!), but you don’t have the right to keep those shows.  So you can’t record 3 or 4 episodes of Lost.  You can record one episode, but you legally have to delete it before you can record another one. 

Otherwise you’ll be a criminal and have a criminal record.