Beware of misinformation masquerading as the correction of misinformation, a concept George Orwell labelled as “doublethink”. Michael Geist and Howard Knopf are engaged in it again in their blog articles “Bill C-11 Extremism Continues: The Attack on Fair Dealing” and “The Effect on the Market Factor in Fair Dealing/Fair Use Law – What IS the law?” In their crusade to open Canadian copyright law so wide that a convoy of army trucks filled with textbooks and DVDs could drive through it, they are suggesting that Parliament not clarify that “the effect of the dealing on the market for the original work” is the pre-eminent factor in the fair dealing test.
Information wants to be free. But, helping people to steal access to it is still a crime as an Oregon man just found out after being convicted of wire fraud for helping thousands steal internet service.
The defendant, Ryan Harris, ran a company called TCNISO. It distributed software and hardware tools that enabled customers to modify their cable modems to mask themselves as paying customers. In his defense Harris claimed assisting customers in their cable modem hacking activities was justified because it facilitated access to the internet. According to a report:
Yesterday, OSFI released a memorandum reminding financial institutions that its outsourcing B-10 Guideline applies to new technology-based outsourcing arrangements including cloud computing. In the short memorandum, OSFI stated the following:
Information technology plays a very important role in the financial services business and OSFI recognizes the opportunities and benefits that new technology-based services such as Cloud Computing can bring; however, FRFIs should also recognize the unique features of such services and duly consider the associated risks.
After much debate and anticipation, Bill C-11 passed second reading in the House of Commons on February 13, 2012 and was referred to a legislative committee.
For those interested in the procedure referring the bill to the committee, here is the Hansard Journal recording the step.
In May, 2011 a Belgium appellant court released an important decision finding Google liable for copyright infringement by offering its Google News service to subscribers in Belgium at the Google.be and Google.com websites. The decision in Google Inc v Copiepresse et al, Brussels Court of Appeal (9th Chamber) May 5, 2011 suggests that services such as Google News cannot be legally offered in many countries around the world even from servers located in North America.
On February 14, 2012, the UK Copyright Tribunal in the Meltwater Holding BV v The Newspaper Licensing Agency Limited case suggested Google News and the Google Alerts service would also be illegal in the UK without a license from publishers.
The Supreme Court delivered its reasons this morning affirming the decison of the Federal Court of Appeal in the Broadcasting Reference case. The Court ruled that ISPs do not carry on “broadcasting undertakings” under the Broadcasting Act when, in their role as ISPs, they provide access through the Internet to “broadcasting” requested by end-users.
The reasons for the decison were given as follows:
House Leader Peter Van Loan said Monday that the Government’s agenda includes passage of Bill C-11 by the end of April. The plan is that the bill to modernize the Copyright Act “must pass” by that time. The government indicated last month it mght impose time allocation to get the bill to Committee. On February 8, 2012 a motion passed in the House of Commons to lmit debate to two more days before sending the bill to committee. The Bill was referred to a legislative committee for stufy on February 13, 2012. MPs agreed to examine the bill clause-by-clause by March 14 and end the study by March 29. The Bill will then be reported back to the House of Commons for Third Reading.
This blog post is a longer version of the article entitled This Bill is no SOPA published in the Financial Post today.
While recent attempts by the usual suspects making hysterical predictions about copyright reform in Canada have been ratcheted up yet again, this time the claims are so outrageous that they can perhaps best be described as having “jumped the shark”. Canadians are being told that Bill C-11, an act to amend Canada’s outdated copyright law, could be used to shut down popular web sites like YouTube, fundamentally change the Internet, sabotage online freedoms, and hog-tie innovators.