What’s next for copyright reform in Canada? (updated)

September 10th, 2011 by Barry Sookman 3 comments »

July 21, 2011 was the first annual general meeting of Music Canada (formerly CRIA). Not surpisingly, an important focus of the meeting was copyright reform. This issue was highlighted by the presence of Minister Moore, the Heritage Minister, a strong supporter of the creative industries, and Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister Dean Del Mastro, also an important player in the copyright reform process. They both gave strong indications of what’s next for copyright reform.

MP Dean Del Mastro led off by introducing Minister Moore. In doing so, he noted the importance of the cultural sector to Canadians pointing out the tremendous opportunities available to Canadians. He also noted that “no one understands the dynamics of the cultural industries better than Minister Moore”.

Website terms, copyright used to shut down real estate data scraping in Century 21 v Rogers

September 8th, 2011 by Barry Sookman No comments »

You can always tell when you are about to read a good case by its opening paragraph. The decision of the BC Supreme Court in Century 21 Canada Limited Partnership v. Rogers Communications Inc., 2011 BCSC 1196  doesn’t disappoint. It begins as follows:

The ability of the law to adapt is part of its strength. Technological innovation tests that resilience. This case considers that ability as claims for breach of contract, trespass to chattels and copyright infringement meet the Internet.  At the root of this lawsuit is the legitimacy of indexing publically accessible websites.

Fixing CASL: comments on the draft CRTC and Industry Canada regulations

September 7th, 2011 by Lorne Salzman and Barry Sookman No comments »

Today is the last day for filing comments on the Electronic Commerce Protection Regulations proposed by Industry Canada and the CRTC. Submissions to the CRTC on the draft CRTC CASL regulations are available at the Commission’s website http://ow.ly/6o8Xq.

Here are our comments filed earlier today.

View more documents from bsookman

Indirect theories of copyright liability

September 7th, 2011 by Dan Glover No comments »

Here is a copy of the presentation I gave at Osgoode’s inaugural IP Intensive Program. The slides deal with theories of indirect infringement in Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom, and with the safe harbours that also govern the behaviour of Internet

View more presentations from bsookman

Technological change and copyright

September 6th, 2011 by Barry Sookman No comments »

I gave a talk earlier today at Osgoode to the students enrolled in Osgoode’s IP Intensive Program. The topic focused on the impacts of technological change on copyright. My slides are set out below.

Are music storage lockers legal in the US?

August 24th, 2011 by Barry Sookman No comments »

Earlier this week, a US District Court released an import decision on the legality of music lockers services under US law. In the Capital Records , Inc v MP3Tunes, LLC, 2011 WL 3667335 (S.D.N.Y., Aug 22, 2011) case, the court ruled that MP3Tunes was liable for contributory infringement by providing storage locker services to its users when it knew that they had unlawfully downloaded copyright protected materials into the lockers. MP3Tunes was found liable because it allowed users to continue to store and access songs listed in valid copyright takedown notices. In the summary judgment motions ruled on, the court also held that MP3Tunes was not liable for allowing users to continue to store and access songs it was not required to remove under the DMCA.

University course packs going digital

August 24th, 2011 by Barry Sookman 1 comment »

There has been a lot of debate recently concerning how universities should access and pay for content used for teaching purposes. Some, like Michael Geist, have argued that universities should forgo collective licensing from Access Copyright in favor of other “alternatives”.

Earlier this week, Metro Morning interviewed Jesse Hirsh on this topic. Check out the interview. Here’s a bit of what Jesse Hirsh had to say:

MATT GALLOWAY: What sort of copyright issues do digital course packs present?

UK moving ahead with graduated response after Hargreaves Review of IP

August 10th, 2011 by Barry Sookman No comments »

Last week, the UK government confirmed its intention to implement the graduated response process set out in the UK Digital Economy Act 2010 (DEA). Several documents released along with the response to Professor Hargreaves’ Review of Intellectual Property and Growth summarized the UK process and compared it with the graduated response processes enacted in France and New Zealand. See, Draft-Sharing-of-Costs statutory-instrument, Impact Assessment for the Sharing of Costs Statutory Instrument, and Digital Economy Act Appeals Process: Options for reducing costs. The documents provide a useful summary of how these different international laws designed to reduce online file sharing work.

UK to get even tougher with IP crime

August 4th, 2011 by Barry Sookman No comments »

Yesterday, the UK Government released a number of proposals to modernise the UK’s intellectual property laws. One of the reports is dedicated to outlining The UK IP Crime Strategy. The rational for the strategy is clear: counterfeiting and piracy are of concern both as a barrier to growth and because of the wider ills to which they have been linked, which include dangerous goods, online fraud and serious organised crime.

UK proposals to modernize UK Copyright Act released

August 3rd, 2011 by Barry Sookman No comments »

The UK Government outlined plans earlier today to support economic growth by modernising the UK’s intellectual property laws. The Government accepted a number of recommendations made by Professor Ian Hargreaves in his report, Digital Opportunity: A review of intellectual property and growth in its response to Professor Hargreaves’ Review of Intellectual Property and Growth. The Government’s response can be found online at www.ipo.gov.uk/ipresponse.

The UK Government also simultaneously published a series of  other reports including: Next steps for implementation of the Digital Economy Act“Site blocking” to reduce online copyright infringementDraft-Sharing-of-Costs statutory-instrument, Impact Assessment for the Sharing of Costs Statutory Instrument, Digital Economy Act Appeals Process: Options for reducing costsInternational Strategy, and IP Crime Strategy.