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Canadians Battling Proposed Canadian DMCA 202

Posted by kdawson
from the leave-us-a-commons-eh dept.
An anonymous reader writes "CTV reports on how Canadians are fighting back against the Canadian DMCA. Led by Michael Geist, the Fair Copyright for Canada Facebook group is nearing 90,000 members. There are local chapters, a YouTube contest, wikis, and people writing letters and organizing rallies against the copyright bill. Geist said, 'When you get tens of thousands of Canadians speaking out like this, there's big political risk for any political party who chooses to ignore it.'"
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Canadians Battling Proposed Canadian DMCA

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  • No Worries (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MightyMartian (840721) on Sunday August 17, 2008 @07:28PM (#24639285) Journal

    Prentice and the Tories don't need to worry about voters. I'm sure they've been paid handsomely by American media giants for their co-operation.

    • Re:No Worries (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Opportunist (166417) on Sunday August 17, 2008 @07:45PM (#24639409)

      But that money only keeps rolling for as long as they have their finger on the button. Ya know, despite everything else, the final say in who gets to take the bribes is with the voters.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward
        The people with most money to run their campaign win, not the ones that please the most voters.
        • Re:No Worries (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 17, 2008 @07:55PM (#24639493)

          That may be true in the US, but in Canada the general public seems to put a little more effort into elections than just voting for the person who has the most signs on front lawns.

          • Re:No Worries (Score:5, Informative)

            by MightyMartian (840721) on Sunday August 17, 2008 @08:55PM (#24639857) Journal

            Really? We didn't even break through 70% of eligible voters showing up in the last election. In some parts of the country it was a lot less. Maybe Canadians are slightly less apathetic than their US counterparts, but only slightly.

            • Re:No Worries (Score:5, Insightful)

              by mixmatch (957776) on Sunday August 17, 2008 @09:16PM (#24639959) Homepage
              What makes you think that the 70% that vote is not representative of 100% of the voting populace? Or, for that matter, that the 30% that did not vote really had anything to contribute to the voting pool. Perhaps the message from voting advocates should not be, "You have an obligation to vote, so go vote." I would think a more appropriate message would be, "We would like for everyone to inform themselves and make an educated decision about the candidates, but if you are unable to do so, by all means DON'T VOTE."
              • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

                by Malekin (1079147)

                Why should the educated and informed be the only ones represented in parliament? The actions of the government affect the bright and the dumb. You (and I) may think there's a section of the population whose votes we'd be better off without, but the solution is not to discourage them from voting but to encourage them to raise their political awareness. The heart of a representative democracy is every person getting a vote.

                When you have compulsory voting politicians are forced to address issues that matter

                • by Safiire Arrowny (596720) on Sunday August 17, 2008 @10:12PM (#24640359) Homepage
                  I think he means educated and informed about the issues they're voting for, not IQ or whether they're 'school' educated.
                • Re:No Worries (Score:4, Insightful)

                  by Caged (24585) on Monday August 18, 2008 @07:47AM (#24643205)

                  When you have compulsory voting politicians are forced to address issues that matter to their electorate (rather than just the subset who are voters) and people who otherwise would cynically ignore elections are forced to pay attention to their choices and how they will be affected by them.

                  Speaking from experience living in a country that has compulsory voting your opinion is incorrect. Just like non-compulsory voting you have blocs who are dedicated to one party or another and rarely change based on the issues raised at election. Indeed this steady bloc who are forced to vote makes it much harder for a seat to change hands as the candidate or party has to really tick off the electorate for those rusted-on supporters to change their mind and help tumble the incumbent out of power. (Also known as a protest vote). Hence with compulsory voting apart from the protest vote, the other way for change to occur is for the demographic of the electorate to change. Eg, for agricultural seats to acquire a more cosmpolitan community.

                  Non compulsory elections seem to be won by those who can encourage the largest number of people to get out there and vote.

                  I'm not sure which system is better.

              • Re:No Worries (Score:4, Insightful)

                by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 17, 2008 @11:52PM (#24640993)

                My precise thoughts about encouraging everyone to vote, even if they have no clue about what they are voting on! The obligation should be to find out what they are voting on, what the likely actions of the proposals are, and THEN cast an educated vote.

                Having people who don't have a clue is part of how we got gw bush.

              • Re:No Worries (Score:5, Interesting)

                by innocent_white_lamb (151825) on Sunday August 17, 2008 @11:55PM (#24641013)

                We would like for everyone to inform themselves and make an educated decision about the candidates,
                 
                I like to think that I'm a reasonably well-informed and educated person. I take an interest (greater or lesser in a great many things, including politics and the world around us.
                 
                I have, in several elections, gone to the polling station, taken my ballot to the little booth and after unfolding it, I re-fold it and return it to the clerk for her to put into the ballot box. I vote, but I make no mark on the ballot at all if, in my opinion, no candidate is worthy of receiving my vote.
                 
                And I am Canadian.

              • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

                by mpe (36238)
                Perhaps the message from voting advocates should not be, "You have an obligation to vote, so go vote." I would think a more appropriate message would be, "We would like for everyone to inform themselves and make an educated decision about the candidates, but if you are unable to do so, by all means DON'T VOTE."

                How do you know that an "educated decision..." does not equate to "none of the above"? It's perfectly possible to have a set of candidates (even with a large number of candidates) who do not represe
        • And that worked exactly how well for Ross Perot?
      • Re:No Worries (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Kjella (173770) on Sunday August 17, 2008 @08:06PM (#24639567) Homepage

        Well, they say you can't buy votes but that's not really true and you know it. Who cares if 2000 knowledgable voters get pissed at you if 5000 clueless voters vote for you instead with your new campaigning budget? It doesn't really matter where and why the vote comes from, a vote is as good as any other. People don't want to hear the truth, they want to hear how you'll make their lives so much better so it's tough to call someone on talking bullshit - even when they're not pimping some lobbyist agenda they are telling you sweet, sweet lies.

        • by Sepper (524857)
          The English-speaking media had a lot of editorials on the issues (but no 6 O'clock news stories about it)

          The French-speaking media has been *very* quiet on the issue: I saw a 2 article written in 3 months. At least in both cases they gave equal time to Micheal Geist and CMPAA / CRIA

          Nobody around me seems to care about the issue... Yet it will have a lot of very real consequences on own you can use stuff you own.

          The sad thing is: this law is presented has the one that will stop illegal downloading
          • The problem is that the usual reaction is "oh, they can't do that!" when you inform people about it. They're just too used to being able to do what they did for decades, they can't even imagine that they suddenly can't do it anymore.

            Of course there will be an outcry when you suddenly can't copy your CDs over to your MP3-player or your car stereo anymore and the suggested fix is to buy the song once again. Then people will complain that they ain't dumb to pay twice for what they already bought, but then it's

          • by Nerdfest (867930)
            The latest polls I saw showed that Quebec is actually in favour of the DMCA as it stands, or at least it was in the last opinion poll that I saw. I'm not really sure why this is the case. A couple of (perhaps wildly inaccurate) guesses would be that it's because of poorer media coverage, or Prentice's Quebec connections.
    • Prentice and the Tories don't need to worry about voters. I'm sure they've been paid handsomely by American media giants for their co-operation.

      Yeah, that is, until they become unelectable and American media giants have no more use for them. Then, they are out of sponsors and out of a job.

    • Re:No Worries (Score:5, Informative)

      by mrbcs (737902) on Sunday August 17, 2008 @10:44PM (#24640605)
      You are obviously ignorant of Canadian politics. If we are pissed off enough, we do MAJOR damage. Examples:

      1. William Davis, Tory premier of Ontario, who after giving full funding to Catholic schools, was tossed out of office after 40 years of consecutive Conservative rule.

      2. Brian Mulroney, Ronny Reagans buddy, after introducing the Gouge and Screw Tax, had his MAJORITY government reduced to 2 seats in the next election.

      These tories have been warned, enact this legislation and they will be destroyed politically. Harper won't be able to run for village mayor after we're through with him.

      • Re:No Worries (Score:5, Insightful)

        by canuck57 (662392) on Monday August 18, 2008 @09:21AM (#24643961)

        These tories have been warned, enact this legislation and they will be destroyed politically. Harper won't be able to run for village mayor after we're through with him.

        But it does show in majority governments in Canada, they are term dictators. The senate is nothing more than old patronage buddies collecting big bucks to rubber stamp things. But fortunately we are in a minority government situation which makes the dictatorship more tenuous.

      • Re:No Worries (Score:4, Informative)

        by Pig Hogger (10379) <pig.hogger@gmBOHRail.com minus physicist> on Monday August 18, 2008 @09:49AM (#24644257) Journal

        These tories have been warned, enact this legislation and they will be destroyed politically. Harper won't be able to run for village mayor after we're through with him.

        Yeah, but in the meanwhile, they will have enacted it, and you can bet your arse the liberals won't scrap it afterwards. After all, they haven't scrapped the GST as they promised...

        (The GST is a classic case of ideologic stupidity. What the government did was replace a hidden 12% tax with a visible 7% tax, but they so badly explained it that people got to hate it).

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by mrbcs (737902)
          It was also the arrogance of, "you may have thought that we were gouging and screwing you before, (because of hidden tax) now you'll KNOW when we are.

          I also think that because of this issue and the fact that we now have the internet with which to organize ourselves, we may actually do something about these laws before they become law. As you stated, history has shown that it's far more difficult to remove a law than to fight a bill.

          Prentice was pretty freaked out before Christmas when an impromptu protes

    • Re:No Worries (Score:5, Insightful)

      by gmack (197796) <gmack@innerfire . n et> on Monday August 18, 2008 @06:02AM (#24642713) Homepage Journal

      Actually in Canada politicians are not allowed to take donations from corporations and individuals are limited to small donations.

      The problem here is not money it's the previous government signing a treaty that makes something like the DMCA a requirement and the US ambassador lobbying on behalf of the RIAA/MPAA threatening to damage Canada's economy with a trade war.

      The other real problem is that Prentice doesn't have enough of a backbone.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Jardine (398197)

        The problem here is not money it's the previous government signing a treaty that makes something like the DMCA a requirement and the US ambassador lobbying on behalf of the RIAA/MPAA threatening to damage Canada's economy with a trade war.

        Just to be clear, parliament doesn't have to pass a DMCA-style bill. Signing the WIPO treaty is like dating, it's not a commitment to marriage. And even if they decide that they really do want to commit to complying with WIPO, most of the crappy parts of Bill C-61 aren't r

  • I knew the title of that movie would just bring trouble!

    SEE! See how things are turning out?!

  • by mochan_s (536939) on Sunday August 17, 2008 @07:30PM (#24639299)

    Does anyone know who in the US elected government caused the US DMCA to happen?

    So, if even slashdot users can't remember who caused the original DMCA to happen, what hope is there that any Canadian politicians would be worried?

    • by Opportunist (166417) on Sunday August 17, 2008 @07:52PM (#24639469)

      The problem is that this doesn't seem to have any escape path. Or rather, it doesn't matter what side you vote. The (new) Republicans are for big government and cracking down on whatever perceived crime exists, not to mention that "those intarwebs" and the uncontrolable spread of information, opinion and propaganda is usually not really something the new kind of Rep enjoys.

      The Democrats otoh have traditionally good ties with Hollywood and the media.

      In other words, you're fucked either way. The DMCA is on both sides' agenda.

      • by jacquesm (154384) <j @ w w.com> on Sunday August 17, 2008 @07:55PM (#24639485) Homepage

        That's because there really is only one side in US politics, the one with the money.

        As long as TV advertising is the way to get voters this will not change.

        • by bentcd (690786)

          That's because there really is only one side in US politics, the one with the money.

          As long as TV advertising is the way to get voters this will not change.

          TV advertising is unlikely to be the culprit. After all, all you need to get on the TV is money and if you have some pressing political agenda that is shared by a significant proportion of the electorate then you will be able to raise the money.

          More likely, it's the election system itself that is to blame. The wide-spread use of winner takes all type elections for the highest federal positions inevitably results in a polarized two-party system wherein new parties stand absolutely no chance of making a dent

          • by jacquesm (154384)

            Those are definitely factors, but the reason I see TV advertising as one of the major problems is that it gives money a huge say in determining the outcome of elections.

            If that were not the case then other interests (such as, 'the people') would be higher on the agenda. Now the most important thing is to raise funds.

            In quite a few other countries corporate donations to political parties are strictly forbidden, in fact they are considered a crime.

            • by bentcd (690786)

              Those are definitely factors, but the reason I see TV advertising as one of the major problems is that it gives money a huge say in determining the outcome of elections.

              If that were not the case then other interests (such as, 'the people') would be higher on the agenda. Now the most important thing is to raise funds.

              In quite a few other countries corporate donations to political parties are strictly forbidden, in fact they are considered a crime.

              I still think that TV is a red herring though, even if it may certainly exacerbate the issue. I didn't touch upon this earlier, but the disproportionate effect of wealthy lobbying groups on politicians can be a serious problem and especially so in a two-party system. The solution for this problem is more likely, as you suggest, to be the curtailing of corporate sponsorship of politicians rather than to disallow political advertising on TV.

              (Not that I'm in favor of political advertising on TV but the reason

              • by jacquesm (154384)

                Ok, I see what you mean now.

                Your point is that in the absence of TV advertising the lobbyists would continue in much the same way they do today, simply by buying 'favours'.

                The fact that there are only two parties and that they both have pretty much the same political views and the same contacts with lobbyists means that there is no support to change the situation because whoever is in power will have their hands dirty.

                So, while we're on the reform train, what would you propose be changed besides financing i

                • by bentcd (690786)

                  Your point is that in the absence of TV advertising the lobbyists would continue in much the same way they do today, simply by buying 'favours'.

                  That, and there's always other advertising. It may be less effective but it is also less expensive so you can do more of it.

                  So, while we're on the reform train, what would you propose be changed besides financing in order to clean up the mess we're in ?

                  Well, the ones I've mentioned are probably the big ones: disband the winner takes all system and outlaw the direct corporate bribery of politicians that is institutionalized today. Beyond that I do not know - those just happen to be the glaring errors seen from the perspective of a non-US observer.

                  They're so sick and tired of politics that it borders on apathy and I really don't see what you could do to re-engage them.

                  Well, considering the US, having your inept administration declare war upon, invade and c

                  • by jacquesm (154384)

                    I won't hold my breath for that! But hoping for change on that side of the pond won't hurt. I know quite a few people that would literally throw a party if the US came to its senses.

                    Btw, they're not 'mine' by any stretch of the imagination, I'm dutch :)

                    j.

      • by grcumb (781340)

        In other words, you're fucked either way. The DMCA is on both sides' agenda.

        I don't entirely disagree with what you're saying, but it does bear mentioning that Lawrence Lessig [wikipedia.org] endorses someone whom he thinks is worth supporting [lessig.org] precisely because of his stance on technology issues:

        read carefully what Net Neutrality for Obama is. There's no blanket ban on offering better service; the ban is on contracts that offer different terms to different providers for that better service. And there's no promise to polic

    • by Rix (54095) on Sunday August 17, 2008 @10:15PM (#24640379)

      If Canadian politicians don't respond to the wishes of their constituents, they have the option of replacing them. The current ruling party, for example, is only about 20 years old.

      It's not comparable to the US system where Democrats have a monopoly on the left and Republicans on the right.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by LoveGoblin (972821)

        The current ruling party, for example, is only about 20 years old.

        I think by "20" you mean "5".

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Five Bucks! (769277)

        The current Governing party, the Conservative Party of Canada, is only fiver years old.

        The Progressive Conservative party and the Canadian Alliance merged in October of 2003.

      • by canuck57 (662392)

        If Canadian politicians don't respond to the wishes of their constituents, they have the option of replacing them. The current ruling party, for example, is only about 20 years old.

        It's not comparable to the US system where Democrats have a monopoly on the left and Republicans on the right.

        Much older, the PC Party joined the Reform party, so in fact PC Party now lives on in the Conservative party. Why Reformers ever did this was beyond me.

        Canadian politics is like the Three Stooges. Moe (Harper), Curly (Laytoon) and Larry (Dion). People don't have real confidence in any of them.

    • The DMCA was actually started by some lackey in the early 90's..

      I wish I had bookmarked the page because I can't find it right now, but back in '94 or so, some lackey in either the US trade office or the US copyright office dreamed up this idea of "anti-circumvention".

      The MAFIAA got whiff of it, and it went from there.

      they tried to push laws through congress, and were laughed out as radical nutbags.

      They then tried international organizations, and were unable to push it as a treaty through normal channels.

      Fi

  • by Blade (1720) on Sunday August 17, 2008 @07:30PM (#24639309) Homepage

    Have we really entered an age where the number of people who join facebook groups are used as some kind of measure?

    Half the people I know on facebook join whatever the hell their friends join, or click anything they can to get the alerts to go away.

    Seriously - really?

    • Your description is largely equivalent to the algorithm by which many people assign votes, so I suspect that we are, indeed, in such an age.
    • I know it's very silly and clearly does not represent any useful statistical figure. Joining a Facebook group requires little time and effort and you do not need to understand the position of the group to join.

      However, the very fact that 90 000 individuals in a country of 34 000 000 are members of a single group speaks volumes.

      It's not a stretch to draw an analogy to the time honoured petition. They also take very little to sign and you don't need to know the stance of the group either. But if you have a pe

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by ozphx (1061292)

        90000 is a far cry from such popular groups as:

        "If one million people join I will name my son Batman"

        "If ninety thousand people join I will shave the slashdot logo into my pubes"

        "Forty million people for anti furry discrimination"

        In this modern age, having less than a hundred thousand indicates that nobody really cares.

        • How many times have those groups been on the front page of /. or CBC.ca?

          The fact that we're discussing the group means that their job is already done.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by Mashiki (184564)

          >In this modern age, having less than a hundred thousand indicates that nobody really cares.

          Canada has a smaller population then the state of California.

          Try putting two and two together and see how 90,000 comes together. 200 people can enact policy change in Canada.

          Sadly, most people don't seem to get that there are very 'large' countries that have very small populations. I realize this is a large concept to grasp but policies work different in other parts of the world.

  • by nurb432 (527695) on Sunday August 17, 2008 @07:41PM (#24639379) Homepage Journal

    The government will just ignore them and do what they want, as the people are too stupid to know what is right.

    ( yes thats sarcasm, but its also what the 'man' will do if given a chance )

    • And that's exactly what this is about. Not giving "tha man" a chance to do what he/they please. Saying "oh heck, they do whatever they wan't" won't change a thing, get off your ass and take your country back!

      It's not like you even have to leave your house to do that anymore, for crying out loud.

      • by nurb432 (527695)

        If you are talking about 'electing someone for the people', they are all the same once they get in power. The system is larger than any one person and consumes those that might actually intend to do good and turns them into "yet another politician" that serves to perpetrate the system.

        No, the only real way to make a difference at this point in the game does require you to leave your house.

  • The government will be swept in an election before the bill can be made law, as it was for the last 6 years...

  • by DesScorp (410532) <DesScorp@[ ]il.com ['Gma' in gap]> on Sunday August 17, 2008 @07:49PM (#24639449) Homepage Journal

    Despite the conspiracy theories you're likely to hear about this, the reason why the DMCA sailed through Congress is the same reason it'll sail through Canada's legislative process... media companies are responsible for a nice chunk of GNP (and whatever they call it in Canada), and neither side, liberal or conservative, is willing give up that wealth. And both sides believe that things like high technology for consumers and piracy is a danger to their broadcasters and publishers.

    The reason opponents are going to lose on this is that all major parties will be on board with the copyright holders. And average voters don't give a rat's ass about copyright reform crusades.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      The legislation has already been delayed once due to public pressure [michaelgeist.ca]. Any more broad but inaccurate sour grapes from the American peanut gallery?

      • by DesScorp (410532)

        The legislation has already been delayed once due to public pressure [michaelgeist.ca]. Any more broad but inaccurate sour grapes from the American peanut gallery?

        Tell you what... if this doesn't pass (looks like January at the earliest), I'll happily eat my words in public. But my money still says it passes.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          With the way that the Tories and Libs are both gearing up for fall elections, we might just end up being lucky and seeing a far more reasonable bill show up in the 40th legislature.

    • by GodKingAmit (1192629) on Sunday August 17, 2008 @07:59PM (#24639531)
      Actually in Canada the official opposition (Liberals) and our left-wing party (NDP) have come out in opposition to this bill. The inability for corporations to donate to federal political parties helps eliminate some of the more obvious forms of bribery. (All parties past a certain threshold are funded using tax dollars - there are also very low limits on individual contributions and no contributions at all from corporations/unions/etc)
      • by fyoder (857358) * on Sunday August 17, 2008 @08:41PM (#24639771) Homepage Journal

        Actually in Canada the official opposition (Liberals) and our left-wing party (NDP) have come out in opposition to this bill.

        That doesn't mean that the Liberals will vote against it. They may sit on their hands or run away as they have for past votes. Perhaps a historian of Canadian politics could say whether there was ever a wimpier opposition. I doubt it.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by Sepper (524857)
          My own MP (Liberal) told me that they will vote *for* it... but won't allow to go on without major changes... They are not opposed to the bill itself , but how it's written.
          • Oooh, who was it? This way, you can tell him the next time you see him that you informed the world of his choice so he can face the consequences at the polls.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by PFAK (524350) *

        Last I heard Liberals were supporting copyright reform, including the previous Bill C-60 that they themselves tabled before their government came crashing down.

        Please provide proof otherwise?

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        The situation isn't really all that different in the States and it still got passed here. In Canada, basically you can't give more than $1000 per year to a candidate. In the US, the amount is $2300 per election (primary and general are separate). In both countries, contributions by corporations and unions are not allowed. In the US they can form PACs from their employees/members, but I'm not sure if something similar exists in Canada.

        In the end though, I think it has little to do with direct bribing and mor

      • Unfortunately, the liberals introduced C-60 which was almost as bad, and died on the order table. More information ( and chance to leave comments)
        on the CBC web page

        http://www.cbc.ca/arts/media/story/2008/08/17/copyright-battle.html [www.cbc.ca]

        (The NDP and Greens have come out solidly against changes to our copyright law)

        The one weapon we have is the knowledge that MPs want to keep their jobs and a small number of swing votes can make a difference in a minority government. Call your MPs office and book a meeting rega

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by BPPG (1181851)

      sail through Canada's legislative process...

      I think you're overestimating the Canadian legislative process, since the Bill itself will be set onto the back burner for maybe the next year or so before actually passing, assuming the government doesn't dissolve into another election and will have to be backburner'd indefinitely. There was almost a couple of times just this summer a Vote of no confidence was brought up.

      Liberal and Conservative are indeed the two dominant parties, but they must try their best to cater to voters from other parties (like a

    • by Solandri (704621) on Sunday August 17, 2008 @09:13PM (#24639941)

      Despite the conspiracy theories you're likely to hear about this, the reason why the DMCA sailed through Congress is the same reason it'll sail through Canada's legislative process... media companies are responsible for a nice chunk of GNP (and whatever they call it in Canada)

      That's not really true.

      The value of RIAA members' shipments (not sales) in 2007 [76.74.24.142] was $10.37 billion.
      The value of MPAA members' U.S. domestic box office and home video sales in 2007 [mpaa.org] was $37.44 billion ($40.92 per person box office + $118.39 per person home video times 235 million adults).

      U.S. GDP in 2007 was $13.6 trillion, so together the RIAA and MPAA comprise 0.35% of the U.S. economy. For comparison, the MP3 player market in the U.S. for 2007 [metrics2.com] was an estimated $5.4 billion. That's just MP3 players, never mind accessories, home audio systems, headphones, car stereos, etc.

      If they were a Fortune 500 companies [cnn.com], the MPAA's movie-related sales would come in at #62, and the RIAA's members would come in at #256. They wield so much power because they make a disproportionately high amount of campaign donations [opensecrets.org].

      • by yuna49 (905461)

        My understanding is that the content industries have often stressed the export value of their products more than their contribution to domestic revenues. I've tried once again in vain to find the statistical backing for these claims, but I cannot find any tables at either the Census Bureau or the trade-related agencies that break out data for things like overseas music and movie royalties. The only data I can find is for licensing fees for all types of intellectual property, which includes many other thing

  • by Dzimas (547818) on Sunday August 17, 2008 @08:04PM (#24639555)

    Michael Geist is a shining example of why academics are critically important in society - and why governments detest them. His running analysis of bill C-61 has been eloquent, straightforward and polite. He has earned a loyal following be clearly explaining what the flaws of the legislation are and how they will impact Canadians in everyday use (for example, how the Government is touting the clauses that grant timeshifting and device shifting rights while glossing over the fact that other parts of the legislation effectively neuter consumer rights where DRM is involved).

    Dr. Geist's blog posts and editorials in several major Canadian newspapers encouraged me to write to several members of parliament after a lifetime of political apathy. More importantly, I've done my best to explain the legislation's flaws to others, too, in the hope that they will take action. Several have, also for the first time.

  • by mykepredko (40154) on Sunday August 17, 2008 @08:12PM (#24639597) Homepage

    I've written a couple of emails and talked to his office manager about the issue and asked why the Liberal party is not making this a confidence motion. It's bad legislation and bad for the country.

    For anybody else in Etobicoke-Lakeshore (Toronto South-West), please drop a line to Michael Ignatieff [michaelignatieff.ca] and let him know what you think.

    Thanx,

    myke

    • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 17, 2008 @08:33PM (#24639721)

      You don't want this to be a confidence motion. When you do that, there's suddenly a whole lot more riding on the passage of the bill than the actual legislation. MPs and parties will think twice before voting against it if it means triggering an election, and it greatly increases the degree to which the parties will get their MPs to toe the party line.
      With a non-confidence vote, MPs are far more likely to vote on the actual merits of the bill, and what their constituents have expressed to them.

      • by mykepredko (40154)

        Except that Harper's itching for an election - if he could trigger one on somebody looking at him funny he would do it.

        myke

        • Then maybe this whole thing is a ruse to trigger an election and they have no intention of ever passing the bill. It makes them look good to CRIA lobby, yet doesn't actually mean they have to do anything. If elected they will move the entire issue to the bottom of the legislative pile. Much like the Liberals always do with pot laws.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by TheBig1 (966884)
      I wrote a real letter to my MP (who happens to be Stephen Harper himself) expressing my disagreement with this bill. He replied with the standard form letter listing all the 'benefits' of the bill, and how my life will be so much better when it passes. I am seriously thinking of writing back saying that I was not asking for his opinion, I was telling him mine, and that if the bill passes, I will never vote Conservative again. (No need to mention that I have not voted conservative yet...).

      This guy and
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        You should. And don't just write, but phone and email and while the House is out, visit the constituency office even without an appointment. Get on Harper's ass about it.

        It might not do much, but you'll feel better, and he might actually have second thoughts if he's planning to make it a confidence issue or otherwise gun it through Commons.

      • by kcbanner (929309) *
        Do it. Do us all some good.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by schon (31600)

        Three critical steps:

        1. Reply, pointing out that their standard form letter is full of lies and half-truths (maybe point out a few of them.)

        2. Send copies of the letter to the NDP and Liberal candidates in your riding (or the head of their parties if you don't know who they are.)

        3. BE VERY BLUNT AND LET HARPER KNOW YOU'RE CC'ING THE OTHERS.

        The third part is the most important - it makes it much harder for him to ignore you if other people who want his job are aware they have something to attack him with.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by TheBig1 (966884)

          Thank you (and the others who replied) for your encouragement. Here is my reply letter:

          The Right Honourable Stephen Harper
          House of Commons
          Ottawa, Ontario
          K1A 0A6

          Re: Bill C-61

          Hello Mr. Harper,

          I had written you last month to voice my concerns about bill C-61, and inform you that I was not in agreement with it as currently constituted. I have just received a standard form-letter reply to my initial letter, listing all of the 'benefits' which are to be included with this new proposed law, and how it is "made-i

  • Where they dont care what a few thousand people have to say and they listen to the lobbiest more for more campaign cash.

  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Sunday August 17, 2008 @11:38PM (#24640893) Journal
    It just struck me, reading this thread, how really fucked up the implied procedure at work here is.

    We have a bill, moving forward, over which the citizenry seems to be divided between those opposed and those apathetic. And, nevertheless, the bill has a credible shot at passing, and this is treated as a fairly unremarkable occurrence. The fact that legislation can happen, in absence of popular support, unless some(large) quantity of displeasure materializes, is a seriously broken imitation of representative government.

    It shouldn't take mass protest to kill legislation that has near zero popular support, it should simply die as a matter of course. How did we come to accept a situation where that isn't the case?
    • by radarsat1 (786772)

      I fully agree with you. And how can we fix it? Mass protest? It's sad that there are so many issues to fight at least several of them get through the political sieve every year. Particularly with the conservatives in charge. It's just too much to fight.

  • I've got a foxhole dug in my living room.

      I'm running out of Red Bull and Cheetos.

      My Xbox subscription runs out in a month.

      Can't...go on much longer...

  • if they start patenting pot strains and issuing DMCA pot slash-down notices, I'm really going to be pissed.

  • by plasmacutter (901737) on Monday August 18, 2008 @07:16AM (#24643067)

    In canada, the MSM has given this issue pervasive coverage, and most of it from Geist's point of view (e.g. it's the worst thing since Hitler's Germany)

    Granted it's had a little while to cool down since introduction, but that while has been rife with op-ed's and official stories ripping it a new one.

    This includes big tv news, and many local print publications.

    according to the end of this video [blip.tv], some MP's are actually making this bill a major campaign issue.

    Imagine if feinstein were suddenly bombarded for a month straight with nothing but reporters and constituents asking why she's selling them out to hollywood through letters, print, and live tv.

    Dont belittle these efforts, they're actuall making headway there!

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