Webcasts of the Supreme Court copyright cases now available

December 9th, 2011 by Barry Sookman No comments »

The webcasts of the five Supreme Court of Canada copyright appeals are now available. The ESA/Bell v SOCAN “communicate to the public” and the SOCAN v Bell fair dealing cases can be viewed here. (They are streams and not downloads and so are communications.) The K-12 Access Copyright and Re:Sound appeals can be viewed here.

UK: “not practical” to adopt US fair use

December 9th, 2011 by Barry Sookman No comments »

The UK will not adopt US fair use. This was revealed in statements made by Baroness Wilcox, the UK Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Business, Innovation and Skills and John Alty, Chief Executive and Comptroller General, Intellectual Property Office, in testimony before the UK Business, Innovation and Skills Committee on November 15, 2011.

Here is a extract from the testimony.

Q219 Chair : At the time, there were assertions that companies such as Google would not start up in this country because of the UK copyright law. Do you still hold that theory now and will Government policy reflect that or accommodate Google?

Copyright coming to the Supreme Court of Canada

November 25th, 2011 by Barry Sookman No comments »

The copyright bar and the Supreme Court are gearing up for two big days of copyright appeals. The five appeals are being heard back to back on December 6 and 7, 2011.

Earlier today the Court circulated the draft schedule for the arguments. It lists all the parties, the interveners, the lawyers involved, and the order in which the cases are going to be heard. It is going to be a very interesting two days for copyright in Canada.

Jurisdiction in the Internet Age

November 5th, 2011 by Barry Sookman No comments »

Below are slides used by my colleague Dan Glover in a presentation on Friday at the Canadian Council on International Law’s (CCIL) Annual Conference. His talk was on jurisdiction in the internet age.

ITCan Annual IP Update

October 28th, 2011 by Barry Sookman No comments »

I had the pleasure of attending ITCan’s 15th Annual Conference yesterday. I moderated the Annual IP Update. I also gave the upate on copyright, pitch hitting for Casey Chisick who had to go to court. My slides are below

View more presentations from bsookman

Legislative Committee for C-11

October 28th, 2011 by Barry Sookman No comments »

The Legislative Committee for C-11 will be:

Charlie Angus
Scott Armstrong
Tyrone Benskin
Peter Braid
Paul Calandra
Andrew Cash
Dean Del Mastro
Mike Lake
Phil McColeman
Rob Moore
Pierre Nantel
Geoff Regan

For more information about the Copyright Modernization Act or Bill C-11 or copyright reform, see Change and the Copyright Modernization Act.

Supreme Court denies leave in satellite radio copyright case

October 21st, 2011 by Barry Sookman No comments »

Yesterday the Supreme Court denied CSI’s motion for leave to appeal in the CSI v Canadian Satellite Radio Inc. case. The result leaves standing the decision of the Federal Court of Appeal in Sirius Canada Inc. v. CMRRA/SODRAC Inc., 2010 FCA 348. This decision dismissed two judicial review applications from the Copyright Board’s decision released in April, 2009.

The decision of the Federal Court of Appeal contained several important copyright rulings. In particular the Court ruled that:

Hyperlinking and ISP liability clarified by Supreme Court in Crookes case

October 20th, 2011 by Barry Sookman No comments »

The Supreme Court released its reasons in Crookes v. Newton 2011 SCC 47 yesterday. The legal issue in the appeal was whether hyperlinks that connect to allegedly defamatory material can be said to “publish” that material. The majority of the Court concluded that a hyperlink, by itself, should never be seen as “publication” of the content to which it refers. Although the case dealt mainly with that issue the Court gave expansive reasons which will have significant impacts on future cases involving Internet defamation, freedom of expression on the Internet, and the liability of ISPs for dissemination of defamatory or infringing content.

Copyright Bill C-11 gets second reading in the House of Commons

October 19th, 2011 by Barry Sookman No comments »

Yesterday Bill C-11 was given second reading in the House of Commons. The statements by the Government and opposition parties can be found here.

For the record, Industry Minister Christian Paradis said the following in speaking about the Bill in the House:

Mr. Speaker, as you know, this is the second time that the government has introduced this bill. During the previous Parliament and for almost a year, the Copyright Modernization Act—then known as Bill C-32—was carefully examined and debated by parliamentarians and stakeholders.

Canada’s new anti-spam Law: too much of a good thing?

October 17th, 2011 by Lorne Salzman and Barry Sookman No comments »

Here is a copy of the op-ed published by The Hill Times today on CASL.

Most people would agree that unwanted commercial emails – commonly called spam – are awful. Spam wastes our time. It clogs our inboxes and can be full of scams, malware and fraudulent, false and misleading messages. So who wouldn’t have cheered when Canada finally decided to outlaw spam and related afflictions?

With the September 7 conclusion of the public comment period on the new anti-spam law, known as CASL (for Canada’s anti-spam law), Canada has taken a major step toward finalizing legislation designed to outlaw practices such as sending commercial electronic messages without recipients’ consent or using misleading information in the online promotion of products. Reason to celebrate, one would think.