I thought it might be more of an advantage having folks with a hint of tech savvy thinking working on Canada’s answer to copyright legislation demands being tossed at us from the US and other countries. turns out, not so much.
Industry Minister Tony Clement says cracking down on people who break “digital locks” on DVDs and video games brings Canada in line with many countries, despite criticism from Internet experts.
So, let me kind of see if I can’t maybe wrap my head around this one. Copying CD’s to your computer, to then put them on your iPod, is not illegal under the new bill. Purchasing music online to then put on your iPod is not illegal. So long as the said music from either source isn’t protected by DRM. Which escentially means we’re going to start seeing more companies employing DRM in order to prevent folks from copying, now that they have legal backing up here to do so. In spite of the fact DRM only ever actually makes things worse for people who actually *do* want to pay for it. Nice thinking, Tony.
With the appropriate props given to the originating blog, I explained my theory behind tactics like that as it applies to TV. The same can easily be expanded to music. I want to be able to listen to an album I obtain where, when and how I choose. Why? Because if I legally purchased it, it’s legally mine to do with as I see fit. The copyright bill as it stands right now escentially grants record labels the freedom to decide, simply by including DRM on a purchased CD, that by law I’m not allowed to do so. Hence, it’s then off to another illegal realm–I either break the digital lock on the CD, pay for yet another copy to put on my MP3 player, or just to have on my computer, or obtain the album the not so legal way via torrents. Which do you think I’m gonna pick? And I haven’t even addressed the case of an album only ever having maybe 1 or 2 good songs on it, but you’re still required to cough up $20 for the whole thing.
It was no doubt a common practice pre-internet for folks to copy a tape, or part of one, for a friend/family member. Or, for folks to copy songs off the radio onto tape for themselves. I’ve done both, and had both done for me–so have doubtless many others. With the advent of the internet and file sharing, that’s kind of the natural progression of that same practice. Under both the old and new copyright legislation, that practice–in spite of the fact it predates the internet–would still be rendered illegal. I’m pretty sure there are folks in government on both sides of the issue who’ve done the same thing I have. I’d lay odds minister Clement is one of them. I guessed as much already, and questioned whether or not he’d begin to see file sharing as it stands right now as a natural progression of that habbit. Given his viewpoint on this particular bill as it stands right now, my money’s on not likely.
In spite of statements etc up until this week that were shying away from the kind of copyright legislation being challenged in various forms on the other side of the border, Tony Clement still doesn’t quite get it. It’s sad, but I can’t help but wonder if anyone’s surprised. For about thirty seconds, I admit, I was. Now? I’ll be surprised if he switches.