Recording Industry Lobbyists Says Politicians Worried About User Rights Are 'Disgusting'?

from the that-doesn't-seem-right... dept

Well, well. Last week there was a "town hall" meeting in Toronto about new copyright laws in Canada, and we'll have a more detailed post on that later. But there is one story that popped up from all of this that deserved a separate discussion. Apparently two Parliament Members, Olivia Chow and Charlie Angus, who have been big supporters of consumers' rights on copyright issues, have been called out by music industry lobbyists for distributing a 'disgusting' flyer. Why? Because that flyer contained an interview with Angus (a former musician in a popular punk band), where he talks about the importance of consumer rights and not following through with a DMCA-style law in Canada. It's hard to read anything in that interview that is "disgusting" -- unless you don't believe consumers have any rights. But that apparently was the position taken by Alan Willaert, the Canadian representative of the American Federation of Musicians, who not only called it disgusting, but also demanded a retraction and an apology.

It doesn't sound like he's going to get it. Charlie Angus is defending himself ably:
I was elected to participate in discussions about public policy. I have never heard of a lobbyist group demand an apology for speaking out about a totally botched piece of legislation like Bill C-61. If they spent less time running e-mail attacks and more time speaking with the various players they might realize that the NDP position has been balanced and consistent from the beginning.

As for a public recanting to satisfy the C-61 lobby ? Sorry, ain't happening.

Filed Under: alan willaert, canada, charlie angus, consumer rights, copyright, olivia chow, politicians
Companies: american federation of musicians

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  1. icon
    Hephaestus (profile), 31 Aug 2009 @ 11:05am

    I like the rework of copyright laws suggested here ....

    Here is the link

    1) Withdraw from the Berne Convention
    2) Reduce the duration of copyright to 60 years maximum for published works. Shorter still would be even better.
    3) If the term of copyright in published works is greater than 50 years, require formalities for the copyright to be fully effective beyond the 50th year. If the formalities are not complied with, the copyright would subsist for the full term, but remedies would be much reduced.
    4) Repeal the DMCA's "device" and "circumvention" provisions.
    5) Automatic termination of all assignments at fixed intervals.
    6) Author's successors to be specified by statute. Possibly not even the author would be allowed to will the copyright to anyone else. This, together with the automatic termination, will prevent excessive fragmentation of rights and provide for easy identification of the rightsholder.
    7) Provide for more generous margin of fair use. For example: (a) peer-to-peer computer file exchanges to be free, and (b) the judges' distinction between "satire" and "parody" is unworkable: both should be fair uses.
    8) Scrap copyright in architectural works themselves. Blueprints will of course remain copyrightable.
    9) Amend the law of trademark to focus more narrowly on graphical marks (no sounds.) Burden to be chiefly on mark-holders to inform the public to look for its mark and beware of imitations. Any publisher, for example, should be permitted to publish Beatrix Potter's Peter Rabbit in an edition of the same dimensions as the Warne editions. The public would need to take care to look for the Warne mark if it wanted Warne editions

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