For years, the Computer & Communications Industry Association (CCIA ), an organization that represents Google, Yahoo and other companies in the computer, Internet, information technology, and telecommunications industries, have advocated for broad copyright exceptions arguing that they substantially contribute to economic growth. In a series of studies culminating in a 2011 paper published by the CCIA titled Fair Use in the U.S. Economy, the claim was made that a group of identifiable industries called the “fair use industries” accounted, in 2008 and 2009, for an average of $4.6 billion in revenues in the U.S. In a similar paper published by the CCIA in 2010 titled Economic contribution of EU industries relying on exceptions and limitations to copyright, the claim was made that the value added generated by industries in the EU relying on exceptions and limitations to copyright amounted to $1.1 trillion or 9.3% of GDP in 2007.
Archive for the ‘copyright reform’ category
Earlier this week Michael Barnier, a Member of the European Commission responsible for Internal Market and Services, gave a speech, Making European copyright fit for purpose in the age of internet. In it he discussed whether the EU legal framework related to copyright was “fit for the digital age”. He said that although “it remains largely valid today”, it does require some recallibration so that it remains “a modern and effective tool”.
He outlined four principles to be kept in mind in formulating changes that may be necessary.
First, the copyright framework must facilitate the access of all Europeans to their heritage.
Bill C-11, the Copyright Modernization Act, with a few exceptions, is now law with the publication of the Governor General Order in Council. The fourth attempt to amend the Copyright Act since 2005 succeeded where Bills C-60 (2005), C-61 (2008), and C-32 (2010) did not.
A lot has changed since 2005 when Bill C-60 was first introduced. That Bill would have made a limited, but important, set of amendments. Its summary reminds us that it would have amended the “Copyright Act to implement the provisions of the WIPO Copyright Treaty and the WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty, to clarify the liability of network service providers, to facilitate technology-enhanced learning and interlibrary loans, and to update certain other provisions of the Act.” Bill C-11 addresses far more than this.
The Privy Council has released a copy of notice dated October 25, 2012 (P.C. 2012-1392) setting out when the amendments to the Copyright Act will come into force. The information in the notice, which has been published by some law libraries, provides for the amendments to come into force in three stages.
- Most amendments will come into force when the notice is officially published in the Canada Gazette Part II which is expected to take place soon and perhaps as early as November 7, 2012.
The French Hadopi graduated response law was passed in October 2009. A study by Professor Bret Danaher published earlier this year titled The Effect of Graduated Response Anti-Piracy Laws on Music Sales: Evidence from an Event Study in France found that it is effective in helping to reduce online copyright infringement and spur legitimate sales of music in France. He talked about the study earlier this year while in Toronto at the Canadian Music Week, Global Forum.
Earlier today, Anne-Sylvie Vassenaix-Paxton a lawyer with Heenan Blakie in Paris gave a speech at an ALAI meeting in Toronto. She described the history, operation, and effectiveness of the Hadopi graduated response law.
It’s the fall. After a long hot summer, you may be ready to attend a conference, roundtable, or panel discussion to learn about important developments or issues in IT/IP law. Here are few I am participating in that you may want to attend.
October 3-4, The 2012 Quorum Club. The Quorum Club brings together senior corporate counsel and senior private law firm practitioners in a setting where they can share ideas, opinions and network in a way that few gatherings in Canada offer. I am participating in the 2012 QC Roundtable: IP Playbook for the GC.
I can’t figure this one out. I’m a lawyer, not a psychologist.
After the Supreme Court of Canada released its decision in the Access Copyright case, two academics, Michael Geist and Ariel Katz, stepped up their attacks on Access Copyright.
Last week, The US Congressional International Anti-Piracy Caucus published its 2012 International Anti-Piracy Caucus Country Watch List. Canada, which had previously been on the watch list, has now been reclassified along with Spain as a country “in transition”. According to the report, “Both Canada and Spain have taken positive steps towards putting in place a stronger legal framework for the protection of copyright, and as such we have included them this year as countries in transition to acknowledge the progress made, while urging both to follow through strongly on their commitments.”
Canada’s progress was described by our most important trading partner as follows:
Earlier this week, the Australian Law Reform Commission published an Issues Paper titled Copyright and the Digital Economy. The paper asked 55 questions about copyright and possible reforms to Australia’s copyright laws. The paper discusses many reforms debated in Canada during the 2009 Copyright Consultations and more recently during the debates and examination of The Copyright Modernization Act (Bills C-32 and C-11) in the House of Commons Special Legislation Committee. These include new exceptions to permit copying for private uses such as format and time shifting, online uses for social media, uses by libraries, archives and for education, and safe harbours for Internet intermediaries.
In 2006, the highly regarded economics professor Prof. Liebowitz, Director of the Center for Economic Analysis of Property Rights and Innovation at University of Texas, surveyed the entire field of econometric studies on file sharing. On the basis of his comprehensive review (which displayed a remarkable consensus on the issue), he concluded that “file-sharing has brought significant harm to the recording industry”. Prior to that in a comprehensive article published in 2005 Prof. Liebowitz criticized the theory that unlicensed file sharing helps copyright owners. He said those that professed this view saw “gains from copying in every nook and cranny of the economy, when in reality the instances of such gains are likely to be rather limited.”