Liberals, Bloc, and NDP support motion to extend private copying levy

MPs from the Liberals, Bloc, and NDP today all supported a motion at the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage to extend the private copying levy to devices such as iPods. The motion, proposed by Bloc MP Carole Lavallée, provided:

That the Committee recommends that the government amend Part VIII of the Copyright Act so that the definition of “audio recording medium” extends to devices with internal memory, so that the levy on copying music will apply to digital music recorders as well, thereby entitling music creators to some compensation for the copies made of their work.

Interestingly, the committee was split - 5 in support ( Charlie Angus, Carole Lavallée, Roger Pomerleau, Scott Simms, Justin Trudeau) and 5 against (Rod Bruinooge, Dean Del Mastro, Royal Galipeau, Nina Grewal, Tim Uppal). That left it to Conservative Chair Gary Schellenberger who voted in favour of the motion. That is seemingly at odds with comments today from Canadian Heritage Minister James Moore and Industry Minister Tony Clement who were strongly opposed to the measure.

Michael Geist is a law professor and the Canada Research Chair in Internet and e-commerce law at the University of Ottawa.




Mar 16, 2010 at 3:39pm

Devices with internal memory should never be subject to any levy. What are they going to do next charge for breathing.

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J Sunsurn

Mar 16, 2010 at 4:06pm

A lot of people are against the levy, but the benefit of the levy is that if someone ever tries to get a piece of legislation in that behaves like the DMCA in the US does we there is something we can point to as to something working to protect Canadian Artists (which is the usual spin story for proponents of harsher Copyright laws, where as by and large the benefits of harsher copyright laws do nothing but make criminals out of fans) people buy ipods and blank DVDs and blank CDs some of this is used for piracy (not all, not most, just some) and with that it benefits Canadian Artists. Now it has been said that this more of a Celine Dion / Bryan Adams sort of benefit as opposed to the greater Canadian music industry, but thats another argument. Id prefer to have this law be a little stronger, than for them to mess with Fair Dealing in a heartbeat, which is what will happen eventually, this is in my opinion a kind of head them off at the pass sort of tactic.

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