OTTAWA, June 12 /CNW Telbec/ - Today, the Canadian Library Association
(CLA) expressed disappointment with the government's newly announced copyright
legislation, Bill C-61.
Bill C-61 is a missed opportunity and demonstrates that the government
did not consult adequately with the user community, and did not listen to the
concerns of Canadians. Overall, the Bill is extremely complex and will need
more detailed study, but there are many glaring problems. Fundamentally, the
Bill circumvents user rights.
One example is the missed opportunity on perceptual disabilities, where
the Bill allows users to circumvent digital rights management (DRM) software,
but does not allow them to import the technology to do so.
Another example is desktop delivery of interlibrary loan. Bill C-61
ignores the fact that the 2004 CCH Supreme Court Judgment already allows
Canadian libraries to do desktop delivery of interlibrary loan. The provisions
in Bill C-61 require libraries to lock up interlibrary loan with DRM,
something that most libraries would not have the resources to accomplish. This
would force many libraries back to delivering interlibrary loan via paper
There is also a clear problem with criminalizing the circumvention of
DRM. For a teenager, the criminal risk involved in shoplifting a CD would be
safer rather than circumventing DRM on a CD they purchased to put it on their
IPod. "Bill C-61 attempts to provide balance, but misses the boat for ordinary
Canadians and over 21 million library users," stated Rob Tiessen, Chair of the
CLA Copyright Committee.
The Canadian Library Association (CLA) is Canada's largest national and
broad-based library association, representing the interests of public,
academic, school and special libraries, professional librarians and library
workers, and all those concerned about enhancing the quality of life of
Canadians through information and literacy.
For further information: Interview requests for Rob Tiessen can be
directed to (403) 220-6043.