Topic - Copyright

Kill Bill C-11 Vol. 6: MPs gettin’ bitchy part 2

It looks so civilisedWhile you spend your time today on hold trying to contact your broker to get your hands on some juicy Facebook stock, I’ve got a treat for you! Earlier this week, the Conservatives finally said “enough with this shit” (may not be actual quote), and cut off debate during the report stage on Bill C-11, the Copyright Modernization Act that you are all so sick of by now. With the Bill passing the report stage, it leaves only third reading and a Senate rubber stamp before this baby is law. But to make it fun (?), just like the last time, I’ve slogged through the Parliamentary transcript to pull out some totally out-of-context quotes so we can all laugh / weep at our democracy in action.

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Aussie Aussie Aussie, Oi Oi Oi

Guy in suit for the win!Ten days ago, there was a internet law case decided in Australia. Boy am I timely! But this case is HUGELY important, and as I am finally recovered from 4/20, I need to inform my three blog readers of what this case is all about. How can an Australian case be important in Canada? All will be explained in due course, dear reader, hopefully without any Vegemite jokes (well I guess one).

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Posted in: Copyright, The Courts
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Copyright infringement is a dangerous crime!

CRIME CRIME CRIME WORSE THAN MURDERIt’s piracy week here at AM.com! This story is not necessarily a 100% internet law story (it’s maybe 87.3%) but it really caught my eye yesterday. And I think it does have a bunch of lessons for the internet law fans out there. Some dude in Winnipeg this week pleaded guilty to copyright infringement and got an 18-month sentence and a $20,000 fine. Once you pick your jaw up off the floor, I’ll explain how all of this is possible.

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Microsoft vs. the Pirate Bay

YARRRRRRRRRRRRIt was widely reported yesterday (first over the weekend by Torrentfreak), that links to the Pirate Bay were being blocked by MSN Messenger. Yes yes, I know, who uses MSN Messenger anymore? Some people, apparently! This seemed like an awesome story, the confluence of pirating, copyright, the intertubes, and the evil Microsoft empire. Right in my wheelhouse!

So I thought I would write a huge piece about freedom of expression, the internet, the future of copyright, and everything. But first, I felt that in the name of journalism (?), I should try to confirm the findings. Here’s what transpired over MSN (with the name of the recipient withheld for, uh, privacy?):

Who's that handsome fellow?

Well that was a bust. At least you’re spared my rantings. For today.

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Kill Bill C-11 Vol. 5: Enable this! (or, Goodbye and good luck isoHunt)

Your servers are slow but damn we love youHowdy kidz! It’s Monday Morning, which is the absolute bestest time to read legislation! And read legislation we shall. Don’t go away, this is important! Maybe. Last week, Bill C-11, The Copyright Modernization Act (you should all know that by now), made it out of committee and will come back to the House soon for third reading, passage, then rubber-stamping by the Senate before it gets official Royal Assent. And we now have the details of the amendments that the Committee passed. Note that all the amendments passed were Conservative ones, and all the Liberal and NDP amendments failed. Try to act shocked. Anyway, I thought I would take a look at one of the amendments that directly affects the internet and our favourite method to locate torrent files, isoHunt. Let’s break it down after the jump.

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Sookman rips Geist a new one. Again.

Well they look happy hereIn my business, there are no two more important people than Barry Sookman and Michael Geist. They are the giants of Intellectual Property and internet law in this country, and I’ve had the pleasure of speaking with both of them. What’s fun for the outside observer is that they are on opposite ends of the ideological spectrum. Sookman is a corporate guy working to protect the economic rights of the big boys, while Geist is sort of a Lawrence Lessig disciple who stands up for the little guy but who some believe goes a little too far in his disdain for a lot of legitimate protection for rights holders. This has led to some epic pissing matches between the two (though usually done politely), one just a month ago. The latest volley was lobbed yesterday, as Sookman wrote a piece that was, well, hmmm. Not so nice? I can’t really explain it. Join me after the jump for the juicy blockquotes.

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Hot Parliamentary action this week

It looks so civilisedHoo boy, big week for internet law in Canada, in the House of Commons. Two important things are happening / have happened:

1. Bill C-11, the Copyright Modernization Act that I’ve written so much about, passed second reading and was sent off to Committee. As there was never a Canadian Schoolhouse Rock, you probably don’t know how a bill becomes law in this country. Here’s the process. The point is that C-11 is one step closer to law, and the Conservatives are making good on their promise / threat to get this done with as little further discussion and debate as possible.

2. Today, the government introduced Bill C-30 to the House, with the official title of the Act to enact the Investigating and Preventing Criminal Electronic Communications Act and to amend the Criminal Code and other Acts. You may hear it referred to as “lawful access legislation.” You may also hear it referred to as “internet surveillance” or “online spying” legislation. Ominous! And it is. Basically it will allow the police to get customer info from ISPs and telephone companies without a warrant. This means that they can find out you’ve been on https://www.fuckvideos.xxx/ even though you’ve done nothing wrong or illegal. Oh, and also force the ISPs to install technology that will let the cops monitor online activities in real time. The government says if you are against that kind of thing, you are pro child-porn. Well that’s a little harsh, just because someone wants to watch a little porn online doesn’t mean they’re going to watch child porn, there are thousands of legal adult porn sites online like https://www.fuckedtube.xxx/ to name just one of them.

I’m going to actually read C-30 and will prepare a more detailed post about it in the coming days. In the meantime, Geist has a good primer, and here’s the Parliament page about it. Let’s all not jump to conclusions. I am sure internet surveillance in real time can’t be that bad, can it?

EDIT: This post has been edited to reflect the correct name and number of the second piece of legislation, Bill C-30. In fact, I was looking at an older version of the bill that did roughly the same thing. It was misreported in the first story I had linked to, but that link has now been updated as well. I sincerely regret the error and apologize to my 3 readers.

Posted in: Copyright, Internet law basics
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Parliament enjoys mediocre pop-rock and hypocrisy

srsly, Maroon 5?Not to be outdone by their American counterparts, someone at Parliament is illegally pirating things off the internet, as uncovered by the Pirate Party of Canada. What’s the big deal? It’s not like the House of Commons is trying to pass legislation to reform copyright for the digital age. Oh wait. Deets after the jump.

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