Are Canadian Politicians Finally Recogizing There's More Than One Side To Copyright?
from the that-would-be-nice dept
In each of the past few years, facing tremendous pressure from US entertainment industry interests (backed up with blatant lies about the supposed "situation" in Canada), Canadian politicians have introduced draconian copyright reform designed to benefit those Hollywood interests. Luckily the outcry against such rules has been great, and have stopped such bad legislation from getting anywhere. However, there may actually be hope that this year's crop of politicians aren't quite so enamored by the myths Hollywood spread. Michael Geist reports from a recent digital economy conference in Canada where two of the speakers -- the Industry Minister and the Heritage Minister seemed to take a much more reasoned view to these issues. Of particular interest was the talk by Heritage Minister James Moore, seen below. It's only about 5 min long, but the good part starts around 3 minutes:
Here's a quick transcript:
The average age of a Member of Parliament is 55. And I point that out, only to underline the fact that the average Canadian watches about 26 hours of television a week. Those under the age 25, it's about 12 hours a week. But they're consuming more media than ever before. But, they're consuming it where they want it on their iPhones and on their Blackberries and on their PVRs and on their laptops. And they're doing it through mechanisms that didn't exist.
And you'd be surprised the number of Members of Parliament who have never held an iPhone, who couldn't tell you, functionally, how a Blackberry works and have no idea how these things integrate. And when you ask the average member of Parliament "How do you consume your music?" They'll say "well, maybe I'll go out and buy a CD and drop it in the thing or maybe I'll hear something on the radio on the way" and you say "How do you watch movies" and they'll say "Well, I'll go out to the theater when I have the time on a Friday night or maybe rent a DVD at home" and you say "How do you listen to radio or get your news?" and they'll say "Well, I'll sit at 6 o'clock after the meal, finish a steak and watch the news, or get the paper in the morning."
The old way of doing things is over. These things are all now one. And it's great and it's never been better and we need to be enthusiastic and embrace these things.
I point out the average age of a member of parliament because don't assume that those who are making the decisions and who are driving the debate understand all the dynamics that are at play here. Don't assume that everybody understands the opportunities that are at play here and how great this can be for Canada. Tony is doing his job and I'm going to do my job and be a cheerleader and push this and to fight for the right balance as we go forward. The opportunities are unbelievable and unparalleled in human history.
It's great to see some politicians at least having a sense of the opportunity, rather than the "threat" posted by new technologies. Hopefully he can back those statements up when the time comes.