SOCAN’s Secret Copyright Submission Posted Online
The government has now completed posting all the submissions it received during the copyright consultation (I'll be posting a final summary shortly). Interestingly, the final submission to be posted was from SOCAN, but it came with some controversy. Sources say that SOCAN requested that its submission not be posted online. The terms of the consultation clearly indicated that all submissions would be posted, so it is difficult to identify the grounds for non-disclosure. Ultimately, the government posted access to the submission, though not the submission itself. This means that anyone can obtain a PDF copy of the submission via email, but it will not be searchable like every other submission. Note that this also raises privacy concerns as interested Canadians are required to provide personal information in order to obtain a copy of the SOCAN document, creating a list of everyone who has requested a copy.
As for the substance of the submission, it is the usual laundry list of demands including anti-circumvention legislation, copyright term extension, making available right, notice-and-takedown, broadening of the private copying levy, and no further exceptions. The submission includes some indirect criticism of Industry Canada and an industry-focused approach to copyright reform. SOCAN criticizes Bill C-61, expressing a preference for the C-60 approach to the making available right. It also argues that the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage should have sole responsibility for considering a copyright reform bill. This recommendation suggests that it is less than comfortable with Industry Minister Tony Clement and the Industry Committee, despite the fact that the Copyright Act clearly grants the Minister of Industry responsibility for copyright.
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