The FairPlay coalition comprising more than 25 organizations representing hundreds of thousands of members of Canada’s creative community made a reasonable proposal to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), Canada’s telecommunications and broadcast regulator, to address the scourge of online copyright infringement. The proposal, which involves website blocking, was immediately attacked by anti-copyright activist Michael Geist (“Geist”) in a series of articles and interviews. As I showed in a prior lengthy blog post, his criticisms were unfounded and overblown.
Archive for the ‘CRTC’ category
Philip Palmer, a former specialist practitioner at Industry Canada Legal Services and the person who oversaw the development of CASL and its regulations, just published an important blog post, CRTC CASL Guidelines: Do they Compromise Adjudicative Independence? In the post, he questions whether the CRTC should be publishing enforcement guidelines in the name of the Commission in view of the important adjudicative role that the Commission also has in enforcing CASL.
In part, he says the following:
Lynne Perrault, and Ryan Caron of the CRTC gave a talk to members of IT-Can and the Toronto Computer Lawyers Group on the CRTC regulations and guidelines related to CASL. Kelly Anne Smith of the CRTC joined by phone. (I summarized these documents in a blog post, CRTC Issues CASL (Canada’s Anti-Spam Law) Guidelines, background and commentary.) The slides presented at the meeting are set out below.
The following are some highlights from the talk and the Q & A that followed. Note, some of the remarks were also made at an earlier talk to ITAC members that I reported on in a previous blog post, CRTC clarifies questions about CASL.
Earlier today, Andrea Rosen, Chief Compliance and Enforcement Officer at the CRTC and Lynne Perrault, Director – Electronic Commerce Enforcement Division, Compliance and Enforcement Sector of the CRTC, gave a talk to the ITAC Legal Affairs Forum in Toronto. The subject was the Commission’s plans for enforcement of CASL. Ryan Caron, manager of e-commerce enforcement from the CRTC participated by phone.
The following are some highlights from the talk.
- The CRTC has hired staff and has the capability to engage in computer forensics and cyber investigations. It is establishing a lab to aid in enforcement. The SPAM reporting centre will also be run out of the CRTC.
This morning, the Supreme Court of Canada will begin hearing an appeal from the decision of the Federal Court of Appeal in the so called “value for signal” case. The Court of Appeal, in a split decision, ruled that the Broadcasting Act empowers the CRTC to establish a regime to enable private local television stations to choose to negotiate with broadcasting distribution undertakings a fair value in exchange for the distribution of the programming services broadcast by those local television stations.
On March 5, 2012 the CRTC finalized its set of regulations for Canada’s new anti-spam bill, CASL. These regulations were revised following extensive consultations held separately by the CRTC and Industry Canada on previously published regulations. These consultations resulted in extensive recommendations for changes by more than 57 organisations.
Industry Canada is still considering what changes to make to its draft regulations. Unlike the CRTC, it intends to publish a new set of draft regulations, possibly next month, for comment before finalizing them. The bill will not be proclaimed into force until the Industry Canada regulations are finalized and the public is given some time to implement the processes needed to comply.
Later this morning the Supreme Court will hear arguments in the Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television & Radio Artists, et al. v. Bell Aliant Regional Communications, LP, et al. case. The central issue in the case is whether the Federal Court of Appeal erred in holding that retail ISPs are not broadcasting undertakings subject to regulation by the CRTC when they provide access through the Internet to broadcasting requested by end users.
The decision of the Federal Court of Appeal being appealed from is Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (Re), 2010 FCA 178. The factums of the parties can be found here. The case will be webcast by the court and will be available here.
The Supreme Court of Canada granted leave this morning to Cogego and other telcos to appeal the “value for signal” decision of the Federal Court of Appeal. The question in the case is whether the CRTC has the jurisdiction, under its mandate under the Broadcasting Act to establish a system allowing private local television stations to choose to negotiate with broadcasting distribution companies a fair value in exchange distribution of programming services distributed by the local television stations?
The Supreme Court has summarized the case as follows: