[Announce] Update on Bill C-11 : the final few weeks...
russell at c11.ca
Thu Feb 16 21:03:10 EST 2012
I'm sending a general note in case anyone in these lists aren't aware
of the current happenings with Bill C-11: the Copyright + Paracopyright
This is the identical bill as C-32, re-tabled on September 29, 2011.
It passed second reading this Monday, and the new special legislative
committee had their first meeting on Tuesday where the Conservatives set
the time allocation for how much longer there would be any witnesses and
all discussions for clause-by-clause of this massive and still widely
misunderstood omnibus bill.
The imposed plan is to meet for 12 hours per week (normally
committees only meet 4h/week), with all work ceasing on March 29 at
which point the bill will be reported back to the house. There will be
witnesses starting Feb 27'th after the break, with clause-by-clause of
the bill starting on March 14'th.
That's it folks. The Conservatives, with 3 parliamentary secretaries
in the committee, seem to be stick handling this one stronger than I
think we've seen any bill. It was obvious from the first meeting that
anything proposed by a Conservative was quickly passed, and any
amendments proposed by the opposition was rejected.
If this bill is to get fixed, it will need to be the Conservatives
that do it. This is a majority government, and the Conservatives are
aggressively using all the power that gives them. An opposition party
member can help get a message in front of the Conservatives at
committee, but ultimately the Conservatives need to be convinced.
The committee met again this morning (in-camera) to discuss the
witness list. I fully expect to see a repeat of the Toronto Town Hall
where those in support of the primary aims of the bill (Read: excessive
Paracopyright / TPM / DRM / infringement of IT property rights /
whatever you want to call it) will dominate the remaining witness list,
even though they represent a minority of stakeholders. They'll claim
this bill is urgent, we have some sort of fake international obligation,
that the sky is falling, and that if anything far more draconian
measures are needed (The SOPA/PIPA style amendments discussed elsewhere
There are links between this bill and other bills in Canada and
elsewhere that may be helpful in thinking our way forward on this.
There have been some recent successes that we can draw from.
Is Bill C-11 related to SOPA/PIPA? http://c11.ca/5405
How about the gun registry, given the Conservatives fought so hard to
get rid of that: http://c11.ca/5414
I discuss what I consider to be the worst part of ACTA
(far-beyond-WIPO TPMs), problems mirrored in C-11 http://c11.ca/5406
There are also links to C-31, the "Lawful Access", "You are with us
or with the child pornographers", "Internet spy" bill.
People worry about information the government claims isn't private
being accessed without warrants by police. How do they feel about all
the private information available to device manufacturers who hold keys
to many mobile devices, when owners (read: parents trying to protect
their kids) can't secure them? Do we know what employees are accessing
this information, and what their background is?
Even if you are one of those people only ever worried about "the
government", the fact is that the more information device manufacturers
have on us the more they can turn over to police.
Securing our mobile and other communications devices from
unauthorised third party access and control is being called
"circumventing a TPM", something that should be legally protected and
not legally prohibited.
"It's very important to remember that it's your intellectual
property -- it's not your computer. And in the pursuit of
protection of intellectual property, it's important not to
defeat or undermine the security measures that people need
to adopt in these days."
- Stewart Baker, then US Department of Homeland Security's
assistant secretary for policy, speaking to a group
of copyright holders in 2005.
Unfortunately far too many people focus on TPMs on content rather
than the orders of magnitude more harm that comes from TPMs on devices.
One is an anticompetitive/anti-trust problem that harms certain
markets, something we are rightfully concerned with. The other is an
infringement of our property, privacy, and other rights.
While the Conservatives set a short timeline, this just means we need
to be louder than we ever have before.
There are several offline and online petitions one can sign onto
http://c11.ca/petition (Openmedia, CCER, ACTA/TPP)
The offline/paper ones take more time, but are more "in the face" of
parliamentarians as they are tabled as part of the parliamentary process
just before question period. Having the right MP or group of MPs (if we
get enough signatures) tabling them can make these quite effective.
We need to use social media to the fullest. At this point we need to
get the attention of Conservatives. Make the connection with
friends/family/allies/enemies/etc who may swing a little right of centre
with the gun registry, or even with the C-30 which some conservatives
and Conservatives have already come out against. Make them understand
that C-11 legalises and legally protects an attack on our IT property
rights, and that they should force the Conservatives to uphold their
founding principles and protect these property rights as well.
We're down to the last few weeks... Please dive in and have your say!
And sorry for the rant rather than a simple update :-)
Note: I copied the following lists, in case anyone wants to catch all
Russell McOrmond, Internet Consultant: <http://www.flora.ca/>
Please help us tell the Canadian Parliament to protect our property
rights as owners of Information Technology. Sign the petition!
"The government, lobbied by legacy copyright holders and hardware
manufacturers, can pry my camcorder, computer, home theatre, or
portable media player from my cold dead hands!" http://c11.ca/own
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