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Canadian Copyright Reform Takes Effect

Unknown Lamer posted about 2 years ago | from the canuckistan-piracy-terror-watch-list dept.

Canada 103

An anonymous reader writes "This morning, the majority of Bill C-11, Canada's copyright reform bill, took effect, marking the most significant changes to Canadian copyright law in decades. Michael Geist summarizes the changes, which include expanded fair dealing, new protection for creators of user generated content, consumer exceptions such as time shifting, format shifting, and backup copies, and a cap on liability for non-commercial infringement."

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First Post! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908307)

First Post!

Re:First Post! (5, Funny)

rtfa-troll (1340807) | about 2 years ago | (#41908347)

First copy.

First Post! (Score:0)
by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 07, @10:58AM (#41908307)

First Post!

come and sue me for that against my fair dealing defence, original content boy.

NOW I'm moving to Canada (2)

xxxJonBoyxxx (565205) | about 2 years ago | (#41908325)

Better yet. I live in a contiguous state. How exactly would we go about seceding from this American sinkhole?

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908339)

The North will rise again!

Snowfight (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41911219)

tosses snowball

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (4, Informative)

Nerdfest (867930) | about 2 years ago | (#41908427)

Well, it is now illegal to break digital locks on a product we bought, even for non-infringing purposes. You may want to stay where you are. That is really the worst part of it, but it's pretty bad.

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (4, Insightful)

MeNotU (1362683) | about 2 years ago | (#41908497)

This provision alone can make all the other customer benefits meaningless. All a "content provider" has to do is provide ANY means of locking, including something as simple as ROT13, and the customer/consumer cannot legally do anything with it this bill was supposed to allow like format shifting.

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (4, Interesting)

m.ducharme (1082683) | about 2 years ago | (#41909779)

From the article:

"At the moment, Canada is arguably more restrictive than even the U.S., though the digital lock rules do not carry significant penalties for individuals. Under Canadian law, it is not an infringement to possess tools or software that can be used to circumvent digital locks and liability is limited to actual damages in non-commercial cases."

The liability limitation will likely take some of the sting out of the lock provision, as will the $5000 cap on damages for non-commercial infringement. Looks like a bit of a legislative hack, but I suspect that if you're ripping your dvds to stream them around your house you won't have much to worry about (no damages to speak of), and even if you're torrenting your rip, the damages would be pretty low (less than $5000), which is not going to make a big inviting target for the CRIA to attack. Of course, YMMV, I am not your lawyer, etc etc.

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (1)

crossmr (957846) | about 2 years ago | (#41913981)

So essentially what it means is that if you content shift a book from a pad to a PC and it was locked (say normally requiring you to pay $5 for the PC version) all they could do is go after you for the $5?

This may be what the government said about not worrying about private copying. The actual damage is so trivial, that the rights holders would be crazy to go after it. It would cost them more.

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908983)

Though I am pretty sure that circumventing DRM is also a DMCA violation, so when it comes to that it most likely it's the same as where he lives, so his situation might improve as he moves.

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (1)

ne0n (884282) | about 2 years ago | (#41909227)

So just stop supporting the fools using those locks. Chances are in excess of 99% that you don't really need to streamrip the latest Britney Spears Does Dallas episode.

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (2)

Kingkaid (2751527) | about 2 years ago | (#41910113)

I have had a discussion with a few lawyer friends who state that the no-breaking-digital-locks portion may not hold up on court. The logic behind that is that the provinces are responsible for certain types of copyright, and the federal for others. The feds created a law that goes outside their jurisdiction, so it becomes a bit null. I personally always wondered what would happen if I exported the locked file to another country, had it broken in that country and then re-imported the new file...

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908973)

Better yet. I live in a contiguous state. How exactly would we go about seceding from this American sinkhole?

If I were in your shoes, I think I would have a word with the people behind the secession movement in Vermont:

http://io9.com/5923080/10-movements-to-secede-from-the-united-states

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (4, Funny)

fm6 (162816) | about 2 years ago | (#41909327)

Do you really want to live in a country where everybody's polite and everybody has health insurance? And the federal police wear silly red uniforms? And gay marriage is legal?

They even have decent transit in some of the cities. Bunch of commies.

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41909419)

The red uniforms are dress events only, such as ceremonies or photo ops. RCMP standard uniform is not unlike most US police forces: blue.

I'll give you the rest though! Transit can be improved, but it ain't bad in most cities.

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (1)

madhi19 (1972884) | about 2 years ago | (#41913659)

^ Clearly irony is wasted on you!

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41916041)

And sarcasm is wasted on you!

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (3, Funny)

m.ducharme (1082683) | about 2 years ago | (#41909791)

Bunch of commies.

Ahem, excuse me sir, but I believe the proper term is "Canuckistanis". Sorry to bother you.

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (4, Funny)

flyingfsck (986395) | about 2 years ago | (#41910173)

You mean: Sorry to bother you, eh.

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (1)

fm6 (162816) | about 2 years ago | (#41910473)

Here in greater Portland, we have "Clackistanis", tea party types from Clackamas county just south of PDX. They object to "Portland Creep" which is code for regional planning and regionally funded transportation infrastructure (bridges, light rail, but of course freeways are fine). Just as the national TP is a bunch of fringe types who exist mainly because fossil fuel interests need to push an anti-ecology agenda, the Clackistanis exist mainly because local timber families are sitting on forests that they'd like to turn into suburbs. Very un-Canadian.

The Clackistani doctrine that is wierdest is that light rail spreads crime. They cite a burglary hotspot in downtown Gresham, which is the eastern end of the light rail system. The idea of burglars schlepping their swag home on the late train is amusing — until you realize the unstated (and very racist) assumption that these burglaries are all committed by residents of North Portland, the biggest African-American community in Oregon, and also an important light rail nexus.

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41909971)

or perhaps you want to live in a country where a pound of butter is $5 and a crappy house costs $1,100,000. but the average income is $7000 less than the US. Oh yea and they have freedom of speech so long and you do not say anything offensive, if you do, human rights tribunal for you oh and you do NOT have the right to have you lawyer present when you are interrogated by the police. shall I go on?

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (3)

TheCycoONE (913189) | about 2 years ago | (#41910287)

No, I don't think I'd want to live there. I'm fine with my home in Canada though.

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (2)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | about 2 years ago | (#41910613)

Gay marriages are the best!

A guy marrying a guy means two more women available for the straight men.

And a woman marrying another woman... well, I'm just hoping they have a webcam.

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (1)

fm6 (162816) | about 2 years ago | (#41913219)

I passed your post on to Ellen and Portia, and they rolled their eyes and said, "Buy your own porn, dude."

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (2)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about 2 years ago | (#41910925)

Could you imagine trying to pass the DMCA if the American Federal Government had been abolished in 1995? They'd have to get a treatise with 50 individual states. THEN they'd have to get all 50 states to bother enforcing it, and some of them would sign the treaty and just not have the economic resources to enforce it. Then, if they sent their own enforcers, they'd be invaders and start a war--and probably get hanged.

If any state seceded--if all 50 states dissolved the union--a lot of the framework of this country would vanish. Most of it deals with allowing a one-stop shop for government control of the citizenry--incorporation clause (meaning federal government rules apply to the states--dubious, but it's the argument the courts use to claim that the Establishment Clause applies to states instead of just Congress as stated IN the establishment clause), commerce clause (meaning federal government can do anything to anyone who does anything that happens in other states too--farmers for example are subject to interstate commerce rules even if they exclusively grow food for their own consumption, much less just sale within their state, because food is produced in other states and if you buy food from a local farmer you reduce inter-state commerce demands and thus that farmer is engaging in inter-state commerce), and so on.

The foundations of the DEA, the ATF, copyright law, patents, would all vanish overnight. The TSA would cease to exist. The purchase of senators would ... well it'd be like if we erased the 17th amendment, suddenly businesses would have to buy off 50 individual states wholesale instead of paying off specific legislators so they could fund their campaign and buy off the public by proxy. If your state became an Orwellian shithole, you could move to one of the other 49--you'd have to apply for citizenship of course. Everyone would have a passport. Federal Express would carry standard post.

The RIAA would dissolve immediately. All of its executive board would be found in various places either in back alleys, in basements, or in party halls, overdosed to death on coke, or bleeding from a head with a revolver in hand, or hanging from their own belts. One or two might simply jump from the Space Needle.

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (1)

Dragonslicer (991472) | about 2 years ago | (#41911937)

Better yet. I live in a contiguous state. How exactly would we go about seceding from this American sinkhole?

And leave only Alaska, Hawaii, and a few other small islands as the "United States"?

Protip: "Contiguous"... You keep on using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about 2 years ago | (#41913151)

I'm guessing starting by sincerely apologizing to the rest of us.

Re:NOW I'm moving to Canada (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41915349)

What state? We are always interested in an alternate route to New Brunswick if Quebec secedes...

What is (1)

Intrepid imaginaut (1970940) | about 2 years ago | (#41908351)

What is a "creator of user generated content"? Should that be "aggregator"?

Re:What is (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908439)

At a guess, I imagine this is to give proctection to the user who generates the content not the site that hosts the content.

Re:What is (3, Informative)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 years ago | (#41908541)

What is a "creator of user generated content"?

You. Your comment is user-generated content, and you are its creator.

Re:What is (3, Funny)

XxtraLarGe (551297) | about 2 years ago | (#41908787)

What is a "creator of user generated content"?

You. Your comment is user-generated content, and you are its creator.

So, did you just violate his copyright by quoting him? Did I just violate yours? I'm confused...

Re:What is (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 years ago | (#41908897)

It probably depends on where you live. In the US it would be fair use, other places maybe not. In the US you can't sue unless you've registered the copyright, in other places maybe not.

Re:What is (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908923)

No you're just being silly.

However, if mcgrew were to have encoded his text as MIME64 and call it encryption, but have you re-encode it as UTF-8 then you very well could be foul of violating the new copyright laws. Unfortunately, I'm not kidding (I wish I were).

The whole copyright law is full of the wonderful, "notwithstanding" clauses where the notwithstanding is the breaking of digital locks section. I have an open letter to my MP (who voted for the bill) to try and explain why he feels converting DVDs to a different format so I can watch them on my portable media device should be illegal. So far I have received no answer, nor do I expect to ever receive one.

Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock rules (5, Insightful)

Bradmont (513167) | about 2 years ago | (#41908483)

From the article:

Fourth, the digital lock rules are now also in effect. This was the most controversial aspect of the bill as the government caved to U.S. pressure despite widespread opposition to its restrictive approach. There are some exceptions to the digital lock rules (including for law enforcement, interoperability, encryption research, security, privacy, unlocking cellphones, and persons with perceptual disabilities), but these are drafted in a very restrictive manner. The government has established a regulatory process to allow for new digital lock exceptions, which creates the possibility of Canadians seeking new exceptions to at least match some of the U.S. exceptions on DVDs or streaming video. At the moment, Canada is arguably more restrictive than even the U.S., though the digital lock rules do not carry significant penalties for individuals. Under Canadian law, it is not an infringement to possess digital locks and liability is limited to actual damages in non-commercial cases.

This is unfortunate. A digital locks rule would not *necessarily* be a bad thing, if it contained a, "as long as it does not supercede the above-listed consumer rights" clause. As it stands, I'm pretty sure this is not the case.

Re:Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock ru (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908677)

Right. This is not the case. Every single concession given to consumers are provided the absence of digital locks. In other words as soon as a digital lock is applied, every single consumer right goes out the window.

And so yes, Canadians have been fucked over royally by their government (which was just a proxy for the US government) in favour of the copyright lobbies.

And all of this despite the fact that the government ran (a charade of) a "consultation" across the whole country with Canadians asking what they wanted, and even though Canadians told them overwhelming that they did not want a DMCA, that is exactly what they have shoved up the asses of every single Canadian.

And as far as it being a DMCA, it's even worse than the US "model" where at least that model allows for a review every few years of new exceptions that should be made to the digital locks provisions. Canadians get no such reviews and will live with these digital lock rules forever.

Re:Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock ru (2)

Bradmont (513167) | about 2 years ago | (#41908719)

There *is* a process to add new exceptions. Time will tell how it works. (quoted above)

The government has established a regulatory process to allow for new digital lock exceptions, which creates the possibility of Canadians seeking new exceptions to at least match some of the U.S. exceptions on DVDs or streaming video.

Re:Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock ru (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908793)

Canada had a regulatory process to allow satellite TV service into Canada, and satellite radio service into Canada. Both took about 10 years to complete, and were completed simply because in 10 years a Canadian media conglomerate had figured out how to monetize Canadian consumers.

The answer is it will not work because history has shown it doesn't. It's okay, everyone will just keep pirating just like they always did.

Re:Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock ru (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41915631)

Now doubt your assertion has merit, however I believe negotiating Canadian content had something to do with the tortoise-like pace.

Re:Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock ru (3)

Lieutenant_Dan (583843) | about 2 years ago | (#41908759)


And as far as it being a DMCA, it's even worse than the US "model" where at least that model allows for a review every few years of new exceptions that should be made to the digital locks provisions. Canadians get no such reviews and will live with these digital lock rules forever.

From the Geist's summary:

"The government has established a regulatory process to allow for new digital lock exceptions, which creates the possibility of Canadians seeking new exceptions to at least match some of the U.S. exceptions on DVDs or streaming video"

I think there's four options here:
a) we as consumers push to get these exceptions in place using the process
b) we avoid products with digital locks
c) we come up with a digital -> analog -> digital conversion solution
d) we break the law and risk a max $5,000 fine

Re:Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock ru (1)

Em Adespoton (792954) | about 2 years ago | (#41909679)

So... if something has DRM, someone can send it out of Canada, have the DRM removed, and have the DRM-free version sent back to Canada where it will now be subject to the consumer rights statutes?

The big question forms around what is considered a "digital lock" and what is considered "format shifting" -- I like to shift my content from encrypted to world-readable, so that I don't have to worry about key expiration. Is this legal until someone claims that the encryption was actually a lock? Is it even legal after that?

Time to start reading the details I guess....

Re:Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock ru (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41911969)

I'm actually pretty happy with this. Educational institutions are pretty much exempt and a glaring loophole has been left for them: any infringement on their part is treated as non-commercial, and damages are capped at $5k. This is a good thing, use your imagination.

You're not going to have the recording industry send individuals to the poorhouse with absurd damage claims for file-sharing, like the RIAA does in the states. $5k in damages in hardly worth going after, given how legal fees work in Canada, any suit case would incur a significant net loss, so you're not going to see many of these, if any at all.

Fair use in general is beefed up, which is good, but that being said, copyright infringement is still very much illegal, which is also good. As a contend creator, all I really need to do now, is have some form of digital lock, and I can more or less cut out the middleman, even if it's something as trivial as digital fingerprinting or a serial key unlock. Both content providers and content consumers win with this reform, it's nothing but good.

What, were you expecting them to just scrap all form of copyright protection? Let's be honest here, how many people really break digital locks purely for the sake of making personal backups, and how many who claim they do are actually lying? What this reform says is, go ahead and do it, it's still illegal, but as long as you're not reproducing and redistributing commercially, it isn't financially viable for anyone to call you out on it.

Re:Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock ru (1)

Fishead (658061) | about 2 years ago | (#41914453)

Right. This is not the case. Every single concession given to consumers are provided the absence of digital locks. In other words as soon as a digital lock is applied, every single consumer right goes out the window..

Yeah so... I'm never going to buy anything that has a digital lock as now I can pirate for my personal use and not be worried about a ridiculous fine.

Worst case Ontario they come after me for (up to) $5000, I go to court and represent myself wasting as much of their time as I can asking dumb questions and I have sell my truck to pay for the fine.

It's worth the risk... but I'm not a lawyer so this should be a good laugh...

Re:Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock ru (2)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about 2 years ago | (#41908733)

Even then, it comes down to 'You have these rights, but only if your hackers are better than our engineers.' While in practice all significently-deployed DRM schemes have been broken, it often takes many months, and even then may require substantial skill on the part of the end user to, for example, solder a chip into a console. It's very bad legal practice to have any kind of consumer right that can only be exercised by first winning a battle of skill with an engineer.

Re:Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock ru (1)

Apu de Beaumarchais (2023822) | about 2 years ago | (#41908769)

More than unfortunate, it's outrageous. As a Canadian who does a lot in my spare time with Media Centers (most recently creating an HTML5 prototype that works with the XBOX 360) and has a large legitimate collection of DVD's, I am extremely annoyed. It's even tougher to enforce than dealing with online downloading, but it's a morale stab at consumers with no real gain.

Re:Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock ru (4, Interesting)

Beardo the Bearded (321478) | about 2 years ago | (#41908921)

Under Canadian law, it is not an infringement to possess digital locks and liability is limited to actual damages in non-commercial cases.

But this is the important part. If you're ripping something for personal purposes, the most they can possibly sue you for is what they can prove they lost. This means that you aren't going to get ten-thousand dollar fines for ripping your BR of Cars so the kids' fingerprints don't get all over the disc. My lawyer has told me to "just eat" a fairly easy $2500 wrong. That means unless you're a commercial offender (i.e. selling for profit) you're going to be just fine.

And even if you own handbrake + a lot of other ripping tools, that in itself is not a crime and it couldn't be used for getting a warrant.

Re:Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock ru (3, Informative)

Sloppy (14984) | about 2 years ago | (#41909309)

And even if you own handbrake + a lot of other ripping tools, that in itself is not a crime and it couldn't be used for getting a warrant.

It looks like you're right that it's not a crime to have that software, but it looks to me like 41.1(c) makes it a crime to create those tools or provide them. Also, you might be "import"ing the software (a new crime per this law) when you download/update it.

Interestingly, this law has the same weirdness as US' DMCA: it defines circumvention in terms of doing something without the authority of the copyright owner. But for tools, there never is any specific copyright owner. That creates a two-pronged weakness (just like DCMA) in that

  1. DRM cracking can become legal if enough copyright owners who use that DRM, say they're ok with it, or
  2. Mainstream tools (e.g. Sony's DVD player) may be violators if some copyright owner says they're not ok with it.

So this law is theoretically solvable the same way as DMCA: everyone, go make a movie, and publish it on CSS-protected DVD. Then sew chaos.

Re:Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock ru (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41909987)

Until the 'content protecting' algorithm is covered by a patent where you need a $1M licensed tool to encrypt..

Re:Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock ru (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 years ago | (#41911315)

Then sew chaos.

Um, I don't think you said what you thought you said, and I don't see how it can be an innocent typo, considering how far apart the E and O are on a keyboard. "Sew" means repair a cloth. I believe you meant "sow", which is what you do with seeds to make something grow. I.e., "sow the seeds of chaos."

You don't read many books, do you?

Re:Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock ru (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41911473)

I think he meant "chaos ensues".

Re:Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock ru (1)

Beardo the Bearded (321478) | about 2 years ago | (#41912075)

Those who follow chaos don't give a crap about spelling.

Hail Eris!

Hail Discordia!

Not "Hail Spell-checker!"

Re:Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock ru (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 years ago | (#41917837)

Those who follow chaos don't give a crap about spelling.

Then they don't give a crap about communication either.

Re:Some good, but adds restrictive digital lock ru (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41918447)

You understood what he meant, which means he was able to communicate with you. Spelling made no difference, only those with low self esteem trying to impress others with their superiority in spelling correct others spelling mistakes.

Horrible idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908489)

Look, either do away with copyright, or actually do copyright right. Setting a cap on infringement simply means one thing: You can't sell anything to a home user for more than $4999.99 because it's cheaper if they just pirate it instead. That doesn't sound significant right now, but ask yourself, how much did you/your parents/your grandparents pay for a record in 1950? It's not so far fetched that the cap will be a significant problem in the future.

Of course, I'm on the side of "copyright is the problem", so I guess I should be happy with any scraps thrown my way.

Wow! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908501)

What's it like to have a government that works for the people?

Re:Wow! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908693)

Don't ask any Canadian about that. They got fucked up the ass hard with the digial-locks-trumps-everything proviso that they had shoved up their assholes with this C-11.

Over all, this was good. (5, Interesting)

Lieutenant_Dan (583843) | about 2 years ago | (#41908507)

I had actually e-mailed my MP directly (a Liberal) and the Minister of Industry Affairs (a Conservative), making it pretty clear about how consumer's rights must be protected.

Looks like the levy on media is there; I guess music downloading will continue being legal in Canada. I'm fine with that.

The digital locks piece is what bothers me, and it's good that a process exists to have the governement re-visit this. So on top of my list will be to copy DVDs so that I can use it my devices. Since format-shifting is permitted then this should be fine on principle.

Michael Geist himself should be commended because he was a solid (constructive) critic and I remember seeing him on CSPAN doing an awesome job explaining the issues to the committee members. He played a BIG part in my opinion to get this bill the way it is.

Re:Over all, this was good. (4, Interesting)

Bradmont (513167) | about 2 years ago | (#41908585)

I am so thankful for Michael Geist's work in our country. He's like a less whiny, more effective version of Cory Doctorow.

Re:Over all, this was good. (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908723)

You clearly do not understand the bill.

You CANNOT copy DVDs, despite paying to be able to on blank media. They are protected by a digital lock and digital locks trump *every* other right you have. You CANNOT format shift when a digital lock is applied. Wanna hold your breath on waiting for digital locks to be applied preventing you from doing that? You can. I guarantee you will not suffocate.

Re:Over all, this was good. (2)

twnth (575721) | about 2 years ago | (#41909333)

IANAL, but as I read it you can copy a dvd to a backup dvd as the digital lock remains intact on the backup, therefore not circumvented or broken.

However, you cannot rip the dvd to another format because that removes the digital lock.

You can rip music, because there is no digital lock to break, and therefore the format shifting is legit.

I think it's a fuzzy area that a court may have to sort out, if a copyright holder decides to push it (for the grand prize of $5000, not likely, I think)

Re:Over all, this was good. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41909431)

Yea lets see how this works out for e-books and braille

Re:Over all, this was good. (1)

Sparton (1358159) | about 2 years ago | (#41911987)

From Geist's summary (emphasis mine):

There are some exceptions to the digital lock rules (including for law enforcement, interoperability, encryption research, security, privacy, unlocking cellphones, and persons with perceptual disabilities), but these are drafted in a very restrictive manner.

So in terms of converting to something like braille, there's some leeway. Not sure what exactly, but they're at least somewhat trying to look out for people with disabilities.

Re:Over all, this was good. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41910015)

so - translation:

you can format shift legally between some specific formats, but not all,
despite the bill saying that you can shift between all.

yea - that makes sense

Re:Over all, this was good. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41910711)

"I think it's a fuzzy area that a court may have to sort out, if a copyright holder decides to push it (for the grand prize of $5000, not likely, I think)"

Given in the states these fine gentlemen were running the "pay us 3000 dollars or we'll sue you for real" scam, I don't see why they won't try it anyway. $5000 is actually quite a large fee, per infringement. Most of us can't just toss that kind of money to make them shut up.

Re:Over all, this was good. (4, Interesting)

Em Adespoton (792954) | about 2 years ago | (#41909903)

You clearly do not understand the bill.

You CANNOT copy DVDs, despite paying to be able to on blank media. They are protected by a digital lock and digital locks trump *every* other right you have. You CANNOT format shift when a digital lock is applied. Wanna hold your breath on waiting for digital locks to be applied preventing you from doing that? You can. I guarantee you will not suffocate.

While true, and worrying, exemptions can be created, and unlike the US, things like that actually happen in Canada. I expect the exemption list to get pretty big over time. Secondly, actual damages for breaking a digital lock for personal use are restricted to actual damages, not punitive damages. Good luck proving (in Canadian court) that some megacorp is damaged by me breaking a digital lock to watch my DVD on my iPad. They may try to push the "We provide an iPad version and lost that sale" argument, at which point I have the choice of paying them $14.95 or replying that if I had known I could not do this when I purchased the DVD in the first place, I would not have bought ANY copy, so they actually come out ahead. Unlike the US, this is actually considered a reasonable argument in (some) Canadian courts. When the money at stake is less than $15, good luck getting someone to actually pursue a case.

Now, if someone is provably breaking DRM on a significant amount of digital media (cracked versions of expensive software that can be proved to be cracked and not received DRM-free), the digital locks issue could begin to be a problem.

The way it's set up though, the DRM statute is really only an issue for businesses or people engaging in black market profiteering. This in itself could be a serious issue for small businesses who deal with format-shifting digital content, but everyone else is pretty safe. Of course, any modifications to the bill as it stands now could have a number of unforeseen negative consequences.

Re:Over all, this was good. (1)

guidryp (702488) | about 2 years ago | (#41908725)

Looks like the levy on media is there; I guess music downloading will continue being legal in Canada. I'm fine with that.

Levy is still there, but downloading music is not legal. I believe there are now specified damages of $5000 for infringement.

The free for all is now over.

Re:Over all, this was good. (1)

Lieutenant_Dan (583843) | about 2 years ago | (#41908851)

That's exactly the question that I have.

I always liked the free-for-all.

Re:Over all, this was good. (1)

Bahamut_Omega (811064) | about 2 years ago | (#41911391)

Well could always call on one of the parties that would be willing to excise the mandatory DRM provisions from the law in the next federal election.

I would say it is time to retake the House of Commons from the Conservatives and give them a repeat of the Mulroney era dumping.

Re:Over all, this was good. (1)

m.ducharme (1082683) | about 2 years ago | (#41909955)

Er, the cap is $5000, and the injured party has to prove actual damages.

Re:Over all, this was good. (2)

Citizen of Earth (569446) | about 2 years ago | (#41911303)

Er, the cap is $5000, and the injured party has to prove actual damages.

That's very intriguing. I was worried that the $5000 was statutory like the US $150,000. Suppose that you were found guilty of downloading 100 songs. In the US, that would cost you $15M and in Canada $500k. For someone who doesn't have this kind of money, it makes no difference -- you're bankrupt either way. But when you consider *actual* damages, in both countries you'd be one the hook for about $50, assuming the wholesale price for a digital track from the copyright holder is 50 cents. Even if you downloaded 10,000 songs, it's not worth the cost of suing you to recover $5k. Of course, the US is very messed up in that the $150,000 statutory damage exceeds the constitutional limit of 10x actual damages by 30,000 times.

Re:Over all, this was good. (1)

m.ducharme (1082683) | about 2 years ago | (#41911385)

I think you're essentially correct, with the caveat that I don't know whether the cap is per infringer or per infringing song. I'm sure you can appreciate the difference. It's still better than minimum statutory damages.

Re:Over all, this was good. (2)

m.ducharme (1082683) | about 2 years ago | (#41911627)

Just looking at the statute, and it's complicated but it looks to me like the rule is that you can get any actual damages you can prove, or elect before the end of the trial to get statutory damages. The statutory damages would be between $100 and $5000 for non-commercial infringers, jointly and severally. Which essentially means that if you file a lawsuit with 10 infringers and 1000 songs each, if you elect stat damages you're limited to at most $5k for all the infringers. Which is kinda nifty. And very very tricky. Stat max for commercial infringers if you take this option is $20k.

Maybe I should get into copyright law.

Re:Over all, this was good. (1)

lgw (121541) | about 2 years ago | (#41912141)

I don't think in either place that you can be sued for those penalties for downloading, as downloading isn't distribution. Most of the lawsutis have come from people who were using P2P, and were thereby uploading (perhaps without even realizing it worked that way).

so borrow it from the library (1)

Chirs (87576) | about 2 years ago | (#41911621)

and rip it

downloading music is now illegal (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908771)

and you get to pay the levy
get that into ya
angry yet?

Re:downloading music is now illegal (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908903)

Nope not really, haven't downloaded a recent song that I liked for a while. The law finally provides some clarity.

You certainly seem angry. You should try getting a job to pay for crap you feel entitled to or do as I do and go through life without it.

im disabled you ignorant savage (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41909989)

guess poor aren't meant to enjoy culture
screw you and your rich jerkoff mentality

Rationalization takes a lot of forms. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41910285)

Rich?!?! Ah, little do you know ...

Do what I do, go to a library. Last I checked that was free. Or break the law or commit civil disobedience.

Do you want pity? Get some manners first. No man, screw you.

Re:downloading music is now illegal (2)

Em Adespoton (792954) | about 2 years ago | (#41910025)

He's angry because even though he's paying the CRIA a levy on every digital storage device he owns except micro-SD cards (this includes hard disks, flash drives, thumb drives, CDs, DVDs, BDs, or any of these embedded in any electronics), he has lost the protection that this levy originally brought. So now the CRIA is allowed by law to both have their cake and eat it too.

Then again, there are exemptions for downloading from Youtube and the like, as well as for uploading to services to Youtube and the like, so for audiophiles who want high quality music, they now have to buy it -- but for people who just want to share the latest poptrash, they can now do so with impunity. However, it still feels wrong, as Canadians are paying the CRIA for the use of media that has no direct correlation to the CRIA's private mandate -- and the CRIA products are now protected by other laws that SHOULD make these levies redundant.

Giant leap backwards for Canadian copyright (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908513)

A great deal has been made about the expansions to fair dealing in this bill. However, there is a provision that "digital locks" cannot be circumvented, even for the legitimate purposes enumerated in the fair dealing expansions. The logical conclusion of this is that anybody producing any intellectual property can just slap a ROT13 cipher on their work and call it a digital lock. From there, all the new restrictions will apply, and none of the benefits. Anybody who reads the digital locks provision would realize that it's a loophole big enough to fly a 747 through, but based on the Conservative government's repeated refusal to amend that provision, it seems to be a feature, not a defect.

In short, this is a huge loss for the Canadian public, and a huge win for content producers.

Re:Giant leap backwards for Canadian copyright (1)

Em Adespoton (792954) | about 2 years ago | (#41910055)

A great deal has been made about the expansions to fair dealing in this bill. However, there is a provision that "digital locks" cannot be circumvented, even for the legitimate purposes enumerated in the fair dealing expansions. The logical conclusion of this is that anybody producing any intellectual property can just slap a ROT13 cipher on their work and call it a digital lock. From there, all the new restrictions will apply, and none of the benefits. Anybody who reads the digital locks provision would realize that it's a loophole big enough to fly a 747 through, but based on the Conservative government's repeated refusal to amend that provision, it seems to be a feature, not a defect.

In short, this is a huge loss for the Canadian public, and a huge win for content producers.

All it takes is for one person to unlock that lock -- and suddenly all the fair dealing applies again, unless it can be proven that the person circumvented a lock to get the content. Since everyone is allowed to possess tools needed to circumvent the lock, good luck proving who it was who circumvented it -- for less than $5,000.

There are so many loopholes in both sides of this law that it will be interesting to see how it actually works itself out in court (if it even makes it there for anything but massive for-profit piracy cases).

thank you obama (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908525)

we need more of your copyright crap
tally hoe for TPP up next to take more of your rights away

Re:thank you obama (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908945)

You actually want to use the music and movie you bought the way you see fit?

That's racist!

A wolf in sheep's clothing (5, Insightful)

mark-t (151149) | about 2 years ago | (#41908629)

To be fair, I have to say that those fair dealing exemptions are a good thing to be added to the law.

The core problem is that those exemptions can be revoked entirely at the discretion of the content maker who can simply decide to utilize a digital lock.

This is an inherent self-contradiction. If fair dealing was allegedly a reasonable exemption to copyright infringement, then why should a choice that the consumer has no part in making (the decision to utilize a digital lock) change that? Even at best it's irrellevant, and it's a damn-near certainty that most Canadians aren't going to care about this at all when they are engaging in practices that still may qualify as fair dealing, and allegedly could have been completely exempt from copyright infringement, but are suddenly illegal just because of a lock's presence. Consumers may have a choice to not buy such locked content, but by offering legal protection for digital locks, the government has created an added value incentive for publishers to utilize them, and this so-called "choice" that consumer have is restricted by the actual availability of unlocked and alternative content, which in the face of the added value that locks might have for publishers, is only going to get smaller in the future.

People do not obey laws that do not agree with... at least not in the long run, and it is as certain as anything that Canadians will break this restriction at their own convenience, privately or otherwise.

Re:A wolf in sheep's clothing (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908811)

Canadians have even been counselled to break the law by the government. In particular Conservative MP Lee Richardson said:

If a digital lock is broken for personal use, it is not realistic that the creator would choose to file a law suit against the consumer, due to legal fees and time involved.

See http://www.michaelgeist.ca/content/view/6089/125/ for the full write-up about it.

So the situation in Canada now is that the government passes laws Canadians don't want/like but not to worry, just ignore them.

Re:A wolf in sheep's clothing (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41909219)

So business as usual then...

Re:A wolf in sheep's clothing (1)

Dixie_Flatline (5077) | about 2 years ago | (#41910971)

This is not entirely unlike the state of marijuana laws in the country. A small amount for personal use is still, as far as I know, strictly illegal with few exceptions for medical reasons. Growing large amounts is also illegal. But cops are too busy to enforce that law, so that sort of thing slides all the time.

But philosophically, you have to think about whether the law is meant for enforcement or punishment. If you break the law by making your own copy of a DVD that you already own, there are probably no repercussions--unless they're already coming for you and mean to find things to punish you with.

It's not unlike speeding. Most people do it, and it's ignored. If you're 10km over the speed limit, most cops don't care. HIT someone while you're 10km over the speed limit, and you can bet that that'll be brought up at trial.

Re:A wolf in sheep's clothing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41914635)

I'm more worried about the scenario in which one individual is wanted for doing things which are wholly ethical and do not violate the letter or spirit of the law but which cause serious problems for powerful people (possibly by revealing their nefarious activities). The individual merely needs to be followed closely for a few days and the dozens of laws she naturally breaks can be noted and brought against her.

Re:A wolf in sheep's clothing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41909017)

Well, if memory serves, until this law, videotaping TV shows in Canada was still technically illegal.

Didn't stop everyone from doing it though.

Really, stopping to think about it, the main people the digital lock rule is gonna affect is content creators who want to use clips for fair use. This is definitely a concern, mind, and then there's the whole factor of having to prove that you broke the lock in the first place. I note that it's not illegal to own the tools to actually do such lockbreaking, which makes the burden of proof that much harder.

The fact that there's non-commercial infringement caps though means that in reality, very few rightsholders are actually going to go after consumers for infringement. The cap is definitely one of the more sensible things in the legislation, as it prevents those fishing discovery expeditions you see in the US where mass lawsuits are filed by making it unprofitable to go after people who just download stuff to watch on their own.

This is gonna affect content creators, sure. Though I'm curious - if you happen to grab a video file to use under fair dealing that had its locks already broken before being posted online, under this law would that make you guilty of circumventing the digital locks?

Re:A wolf in sheep's clothing (1)

LeadSongDog (1120683) | about 2 years ago | (#41910155)

Consumers may have a choice to not buy such locked content, but by offering legal protection for digital locks, the government has created an added value incentive for publishers to utilize them

Yeah, and just where's the added value for the publisher in a product that consumers refuse to buy? Just say no to locked content. Most of it is mass-market crap not worth having anyhow.

Re:A wolf in sheep's clothing (1)

mark-t (151149) | about 2 years ago | (#41910725)

The added value comes from the additional legal protections that the locks get.

If legal protection did not offer any additional value to a work, then to give just one obvious example, most people who make free content would put it into public domain instead of bothering to utilize copyright at all.

Re:A wolf in sheep's clothing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41913451)

Also...digital locks cannot be broken for any reason. It is also a criminal offense. Our government told us that it will help spur innovation. The law is under broad an over broad. Over broad in the sense that it will affect people of many use cases and not be enforceable and under broad in the sense that all those who are punished will feel the heavy hand of the law and be used as examples. Just another way the Harper government wants broad powers to prosecute crime and say "trust us we know what we are doing" so that supposedly on the ones who blatantly break the law will be punished, but as they say..."they tell you a law won't be used for such a purpose, but they we all know they are lying." Just like the "mask in a riot" law.

F**K the BLIND and sight impaired (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41917135)

So the Blind and those with eyesight issues get it up the *ss because everything has it put on by default.
I suppose nobody considered *that*.

Further ignorance, most people don't go near digital locks, they either have or generate keys, or go around the gate.
Hopefully someone from the blind society can point out the consequences.

Hey canada... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41908863)

I thought you guys were supposed to be the ones on top....
But it sure looks like you're yet another bottom bitch for the USA....

Is there no country with any balls anymore?

Oh well.. I might be screwed. But misery loves company.
Welcome aboard!

Digital Lock Circumvention (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41909021)

Geist says "Under Canadian law, it is not an infringement to possess tools or software that can be used to circumvent digital locks and liability is limited to actual damages in non-commercial cases."

I would take that to mean the bootleg DVD shop has a few things to worry about. As regular Joe citizen, should I rip a DVD to toss on a tablet, a studio could potentially sue me to the limit of proving their online download "product" is different from the DVD and get me for true, actual damages of the cost of that download. I would think commercial infringement carries reasonable penalties already, but adding the lock circumvention - when used for commercial purposes could stiffen things.

"There are some exceptions to the digital lock rules (including for law enforcement, interoperability, encryption research, security, privacy, unlocking cellphones, and persons with perceptual disabilities), but these are drafted in a very restrictive manner."

Hypothetical: Does that make it "legal" to circumvent Apple's iOS locks to jailbreak an iPhone for the purpose of unlocking it, but illegal to jailbreak an iTouch as it cannot be a phone? What if I have a Skype #, or other telephony application with a traditional 10 digital public telephone number on my iPod?

I'm not saying this legislation isn't well intentioned, or even that it is a step in the wrong direction. I just think there is a lot of ambiguity, and much of it will be case by case precedents that get set. The real problem still exists that access to the judicial system isn't for us people who work for a living, and I think I paid for whatever rights my government granted me through taxes already and I shouldn't have to pay for them again by countering dilatory "bleed you dry" tactics of a large-scale rights holder to establish them for good.

New protection (1)

jiteo (964572) | about 2 years ago | (#41909039)

new protection for creators of user generated content

So... users? I think you mean hosts of user generated content...

Re:New protection (1)

Cyko_01 (1092499) | about 2 years ago | (#41911139)

Well, sort of. In the case of youtube google is the creator or the .flv video using videos provided by users. In the case of megaupload it is still the user

Going to encode all my emails in ASCII (1)

RichMan (8097) | about 2 years ago | (#41910179)

Anyone who decodes that devilishly clever code scheme will be guilty of breaking the locks.

All codes are symbol patterns. Just because a code is common does not mean it is not a code.

Again Canada!!! (1)

stanlyb (1839382) | about 2 years ago | (#41911387)

Who said: Blame CANADA???

5000$ Cap? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41918581)

So if I get cought with 1000 songs on my computer, but fall under the non-commercial part of the legislation, what does that 5000$ cap mean?

Am I going to have one change of 5000$, or 1000 changes of 5000$ making the penalty 500,0000$?

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