Copyright Modernization Act
An Act to amend the Copyright Act
Christian Paradis Conservative
This bill has received Royal Assent and is now law.
- June 18, 2012 Passed That the Bill be now read a third time and do pass.
- May 15, 2012 Passed That Bill C-11, An Act to amend the Copyright Act, as amended, be concurred in at report stage with further amendments.
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11, in Clause 47, be amended by adding after line 15 on page 54 the following: “(3) The Board may, on application, make an order ( a) excluding from the application of section 41.1 a technological protection measure that protects a work, a performer’s performance fixed in a sound recording or a sound recording, or classes of them, or any class of such technological protection measures, having regard to the factors set out in paragraph (2)(a); or ( b) requiring the owner of the copyright in a work, a performer’s performance fixed in a sound recording or a sound recording that is protected by a technological protection measure to provide access to the work, performer’s performance fixed in a sound recording or sound recording to persons who are entitled to the benefit of any limitation on the application of paragraph 41.1(1)(a). (4) Any order made under subsection (3) shall remain in effect for a period of five years unless ( a) the Governor in Council makes regulations varying the term of the order; or ( b) the Board, on application, orders the renewal of the order for an additional five years.”
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11, in Clause 47, be amended by replacing line 11 on page 52 with the following: “(2) Paragraph 41.1(1)( b) does not”
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11, in Clause 47, be amended by replacing line 25 on page 51 with the following: “(2) Paragraph 41.1(1)( b) does not”
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11, in Clause 47, be amended by deleting lines 1 to 7 on page 51.
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11, in Clause 47, be amended by deleting lines 24 to 33 on page 50.
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11, in Clause 47, be amended by deleting line 37 on page 49 to line 3 on page 50.
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11, in Clause 47, be amended by deleting lines 17 to 29 on page 48.
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11, in Clause 47, be amended by deleting lines 38 to 44 on page 47.
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11, in Clause 47, be amended by adding after line 26 on page 47 the following: “(5) Paragraph (1)( a) does not apply to a qualified person who circumvents a technological protection measure on behalf of another person who is lawfully entitled to circumvent that technological protection measure. (6) Paragraphs (1)( b) and (c) do not apply to a person who provides a service to a qualified person or who manufactures, imports or provides a technology, device or component, for the purposes of enabling a qualified person to circumvent a technological protection measure in accordance with this Act. (7) A qualified person may only circumvent a technological protection measure under subsection (5) if ( a) the work or other subject-matter to which the technological protection measure is applied is not an infringing copy; and ( b) the qualified person informs the person on whose behalf the technological protection measure is circumvented that the work or other subject-matter is to be used solely for non-infringing purposes. (8) The Governor in Council may, for the purposes of this section, make regulations ( a) defining “qualified person”; ( b) prescribing the information to be recorded about any action taken under subsection (5) or (6) and the manner and form in which the information is to be kept; and ( c) prescribing the manner and form in which the conditions set out in subsection (7) are to be met.”
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11, in Clause 47, be amended by adding after line 26 on page 47 the following: “41.101 (1) No one shall apply, or cause to be applied, a technological protection measure to a work or other subject-matter that is intended to be offered for use by members of the public by sale, rental or otherwise unless the work or other subject-matter is accompanied by a clearly visible notice indicating ( a) that a technological protection measure has been applied to the work; and ( b) the capabilities, compatibilities and limitations imposed by the technological protection measure, including, where applicable, but without limitation (i) any requirement that particular software must be installed, either automatically or with the user's consent, in order to access or use the work or other subject-matter, (ii) any requirement for authentication or authorization via a network service in order to access or use the work or other subject-matter, (iii) any known incompatibility with ordinary consumer devices that would reasonably be expected to operate with the work or other subject-matter, and (iv) any limits imposed by the technological protection measure on the ability to make use of the rights granted under section 29, 29.1, 29.2, 29.21, 29.22, 29.23 or 29.24; and ( c) contact information for technical support or consumer inquiries in relation to the technological protection measure. (2) The Governor in Council may make regulations prescribing the form and content of the notice referred to in subsection (1).”
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11, in Clause 47, be amended by adding after line 26 on page 47 the following: “41.101 (1) Paragraph 41.1(1)( a) does not apply to a person who has lawful authority to care for or supervise a minor and who circumvents a technological protection measure for the purpose of protecting the minor if ( a) the copy of the work or other subject-matter with regard to which the technological protection measure is applied is not an infringing copy; and ( b) the person has lawfully obtained the work, the performer’s performance fixed in a sound recording or the sound recording that is protected by the technological protection measure. (2) Paragraphs 41.1(1)( b) and (c) do not apply to a person who provides a service to a person referred to in subsection (1) or who manufactures, imports or provides a technology, device or component, for the purposes of enabling anyone to circumvent a technological protection measure in accordance with subsection (1). (3) A person acting in the circumstances referred to in subsection (1) is not entitled to benefit from the exception under that subsection if the person does an act that constitutes an infringement of copyright or contravenes any Act of Parliament or of the legislature of a province.”
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11, in Clause 47, be amended by deleting lines 21 to 40 on page 46.
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11, in Clause 47, be amended by replacing line 25 on page 45 with the following: “measure for the purpose of an act that is an infringement of the copyright in the protected work.”
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11, in Clause 22, be amended by deleting lines 30 to 34 on page 20.
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11, in Clause 22, be amended by deleting lines 33 to 37 on page 19.
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11 be amended by deleting Clause 62.
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11 be amended by deleting Clause 49.
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11, in Clause 27, be amended by deleting line 42 on page 23 to line 3 on page 24.
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11, in Clause 27, be amended by replacing lines 23 to 29 on page 23 with the following: “paragraph (3)( a) to reproduce the lesson for non-infringing purposes.”
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11, in Clause 21, be amended by adding after line 13 on page 17 the following: “(2) The Governor in Council may make regulations defining “education” for the purposes of subsection (1).”
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11 be amended by deleting Clause 2.
- May 15, 2012 Failed That Bill C-11 be amended by deleting Clause 1.
- May 15, 2012 Passed That, in relation to Bill C-11, An Act to amend the Copyright Act, not more than one further sitting day shall be allotted to the consideration at report stage of the Bill and one sitting day shall be allotted to the consideration at third reading stage of the said Bill; and That, 15 minutes before the expiry of the time provided for Government Orders on the day allotted to the consideration at report stage and on the day allotted to the consideration at third reading stage of the said Bill, any proceedings before the House shall be interrupted, if required for the purpose of this Order, and in turn every question necessary for the disposal of the stage of the Bill then under consideration shall be put forthwith and successively without further debate or amendment.
- Feb. 13, 2012 Passed That the Bill be now read a second time and referred to a legislative committee.
- Feb. 13, 2012 Passed That this question be now put.
- Feb. 8, 2012 Passed That, in relation to Bill C-11, An Act to amend the Copyright Act, not more than two further sitting days shall be allotted to the consideration at second reading stage of the Bill; and that, 15 minutes before the expiry of the time provided for Government Orders on the second day allotted to the consideration at second reading stage of the said Bill, any proceedings before the House shall be interrupted, if required for the purpose of this Order, and, in turn, every question necessary for the disposal of the said stage of the Bill shall be put forthwith and successively, without further debate or amendment.
- Nov. 28, 2011 Failed That the motion be amended by deleting all the words after the word “That” and substituting the following: “the House decline to give second reading to Bill C-11, An Act to amend the Copyright Act, because it fails to: ( a) uphold the rights of consumers to choose how to enjoy the content that they purchase through overly-restrictive digital lock provisions; (b) include a clear and strict test for “fair dealing” for education purposes; and (c) provide any transitional funding to help artists adapt to the loss of revenue streams that the Bill would cause”.
May 2nd, 2013 / 4:15 p.m.
Christian Paradis Minister of Industry
Thank you, Chair.
Hello to all the members of the committee.
It is a pleasure to be here today.
I see that time is flying by. A lot of work was done this past year. I would like to bring you up to speed on that work and on the Department of Industry's priorities. We can obviously talk about the measures that will follow from economic action plan 2013.
The issues concern, first, strengthening the manufacturing sector; second, stimulating business innovation; third, promoting entrepreneurship and venture capital; fourth, improving market frameworks; and, fifth, supporting the digital economy. That has been adopted and it is ongoing. Work is under way. I will be pleased to give you more details on that.
I am here with my Deputy Minister John Knubley, Ms. Bincoletto, who is Chief Financial Officer at the Department of Industry, Ms. Thivièrge and Mr. Stewart. Feel free to ask us questions. We have the necessary people to answer them. We will do it to the best of our ability.
Mr. Chair, after several consecutive years of uneven economic growth, the entire world is still at a crossroads. As the government, we will continue our efforts to navigate this turbulent global situation and to promote job creation, economic growth and long-term prosperity for Canada.
Our efforts have produced results. No fewer than 465,000 jobs have been created, exceeding the peak reached before the recession. That has been the strongest employment growth of the G7 countries during this crisis. In addition, Canada's real GDP is well above pre-recession levels. This is the best performance in the G7.
We will continue investing in growth drivers, job creation, innovation, investment and skills. We remain determined to keep taxes low—which will probably not displease my colleague here on my left—and return to a balanced budget.
In terms of today's meeting, Industry Canada will be allocated $1.16 billion through main estimates in 2013-14, which will directly support our jobs and growth agenda. In addition, subject to the will of Parliament, Industry Canada and the industry portfolio will implement measures put forward in economic action plan 2013 and associated priorities.
One of Industry Canada's priorities is to help manufacturers succeed in the global economy. Let's note that manufacturing accounts for 1.1 million jobs across Canada, generates 13% of the Canadian GDP, and conducts almost half of the R and D performed in Canada. Key areas I will highlight include the automotive, aerospace and space sectors, defence procurement, and advanced manufacturing.
As you remember, Prime Minister Harper announced last January an additional $250 million over five years for the automotive innovation fund.
In March, our economic action plan announced ongoing funding to sustain and improve the strategic aerospace and defence initiative, with $110 million over four years to create an aerospace technology demonstration program, and forthcoming consultations on the creation of a national aerospace research and technology network. These measures would strengthen Canada's position as a global leader in the production of aerospace and space goods and services.
Our economic action plan 2013 also committed to reform the current procurement process, develop key industrial capabilities, and consider ways to target industrial and regional benefits. These actions will promote export opportunities and help ensure that all major procurements include a plan for Canadian industry participation.
Industry Canada will also work with the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario in order to develop world-class manufacturing initiatives, supported through a five-year program beginning in 2014, for an amount of $200 million.
The government's venture capital action plan was announced in economic action plan 2013. It is a set of measures designed to enhance promotion of the Canadian venture capital system. Funding of $60 million over five years will be allocated to support business incubators and accelerators and to expand their services. In addition, $18 million over two years will be allocated to the Canadian Youth Business Foundation to support our young entrepreneurs. The Business Development Bank of Canada will also be making additional investments in firms graduating from business accelerators and will establish new entrepreneurship awards. Businesses, in many cases, suffer shortages when they start up. Some projects are squeezed. This form of funding will therefore be accessible to our businesses.
Innovation is an important factor that we continue to enhance in order to promote growth, improve productivity and raise our standard of living.
Last year, I told the committee that Minister of State Goodyear was directing work on our response to the recommendations made by Tom Jenkins's expert panel. We have acted on those recommendations. In budget 2012, we committed to paying $1.1 billion over five years to double support, for example, for the IRAP, the industrial research assistance program, to make the business-led networks of centres of excellence program permanent and to recentre the mandate of the National Research Council in order to focus it on demand and to make it more business-oriented.
In action plan 2013, we have also announced additional support in this field in the form of funding for our granting councils, such as the NRC and Genome Canada. I know that you have looked at that in greater detail with Minister Goodyear.
Another major priority, in addition to keeping taxes low, cutting red tape, and promoting fair tariff trade, is strengthening our marketplace framework policies, which set the conditions for companies to compete, innovate, and invest. We also introduced changes to our investment review process, including guidelines for state-owned enterprises, timelines for national security reviews, and the threshold reviews under the Investment Canada Act.
Following the passage of the Copyright Modernization Act last year, we are continuing to improve our intellectual property protections. We recently introduced, as you know, the combatting counterfeit products act.
It is still important to promote a world-class digital economy. In the next stages, we want our future innovation to be driven by digital technologies in order to support this digital economy and make Canada a digital leader. We have taken several essential measures such as adding a digital component to the NRC and refocusing the mandate of the Business Development Bank of Canada. A digital technology adoption program is now offered through BDC. The 700 MHz spectrum auction, which will be held by the end of the year, will stimulate a lot of activity in the digital economy.
I am determined to move forward with these measures and issues, to examine ways to strengthen the digital economy, support digital skills, encourage technology adoption by business and promote access for Canadians. I know the committee is currently examining this question, and I will be delighted to review the work it does.
Mr. Chair, I believe that, by focusing on the priorities I have outlined here today, Industry Canada and the government will help enhance competitiveness and support our government's goal, which is to create jobs and stimulate growth for all Canadians.
March 20th, 2013 / 3:50 p.m.
Pierre Nantel Longueuil—Pierre-Boucher, QC
Clearly, you are very adamant in saying that this organization has done nothing over the past few years, and I think that's really too bad. To my knowledge, the organization has produced documents that objected to several aspects of Bill C-11 and voiced the opinion of 80 organizations from across the country, including 50 organizations from Quebec—or actually almost 30. However, we are not here to talk about that. We are here to talk about the figures.
As you know, the Trade Routes program—which had a $9-million budget—was abolished in 2008, as was the PromArt program. The latter initiative helped artists with their tours by promoting them on an international stage in order to help them break into new markets. In 2008, Canadian embassies stopped organizing events to promote our artists abroad and demonstrate their talents.
Why has Canadian Heritage not proposed new programs since to showcase art and culture abroad and to promote our economic and cultural activities on the international stage?
March 6th, 2013 / 3:05 p.m.
Christian Paradis Minister of Industry and Minister of State (Agriculture)
Mr. Speaker, I find it rich that the member for York South—Weston now pretends to stand with cellphone users after voting against cellphone unlocking by voting against Bill C-11. Our government has taken concrete actions to build a strong and competitive telecommunications sector. Once again, I would like to highlight the industry's effort to address the serious issue of cellphone theft. We will continue to work with industry to protect Canadian consumers and deliver more choice through greater competition.
Faster Removal of Foreign Criminals Act
February 6th, 2013 / 4:55 p.m.
Rick Dykstra Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration
Mr. Speaker, the only disappointment I have today is that I only have 18 minutes instead of the 30 that would be allocated. I am starting out a little disappointed, but nonetheless the clock is the clock. At 5:15, the bells are going to ring. We are going to come back in the House to vote, and we are going to vote on the very bill we are speaking to this evening. Bill C-43, the faster removal of foreign criminals bill, is going to pass because every person on this side of the House is going to support this piece of legislation. We are going to carry it over at third reading and send it to the Senate.
There is hope and opportunity for our colleagues who sit on the other side of the House to play a role in changing part of our immigration system that should have been changed decades ago. They could support the legislation this evening and see it pass. We could perhaps do what we did with Bill C-11 in the previous Parliament, and pass an immigration bill unanimously that will start the process of refugee reform in this country.
I listened closely to the member for Winnipeg North. He continually says to all of us that he wants to see a stronger piece of legislation, a stronger justice system, that would ensure individuals who commit serious crimes and are not Canadian citizens are not allowed to stay in our country once they have served their time in jail.
The member liked listening to some of the witness at committee because they indicated they supported his perspective. One of our witnesses, Ms. Rosenfeldt, provided a passionate and detailed and descriptive understanding of why the bill should pass. The member's favourite piece to talk about is the trafficking of marijuana and how we could ever think that anyone who grows six plants would be trafficking. Ms. Rosenfeldt gave us a detailed description of how much trafficking an individual could do with that much marijuana. Nonetheless, the member for Winnipeg North was not prepared to listen then, and unfortunately it sounds like he and his party are not prepared to listen today.
We promised in our platform during the election in May 2011 that we would implement this piece of legislation. The minister committed to doing the same shortly after the election. We introduced the legislation in the House prior to the summer.
It was interesting to hear the immigration critics for the NDP and the Liberal Party ask at the time the minister deposited the bill why he was doing it, as there would be no time to study it before the House was going to break for the summer. Now we are ready to vote at third reading this evening, and both of them claim they did not have enough time, that we did not provide the number of hours necessary to understand the bill or do enough detailed research. The reason the legislation was introduced prior to the summer was to give them the opportunity to read the legislation. We offered briefings from ministry officials and a detailed analysis of what the bill would mean. We were more than prepared to give them time to sit down with the ministry and have a better opportunity to understand the bill.
The NDP supported the bill at second reading. We brought it to committee, where members had the opportunity to study it. Instead of saying we have two hours on Tuesday or two hours on Thursday, or maybe we will spend 8 hours studying the bill, we asked the opposition how much time it would like and how many witnesses it would like to bring forward.
We asked the opposition what we could do to ensure they had every bit of knowledge they thought they would need to move the legislation forward, and as I heard my colleague from the NDP mention this afternoon, to try to work together, not sitting on the other side of the House voting against this piece of legislation. All of that effort, the work, the information that was provided, and all of the analysis and detail the minister brought forward to the committee at any time he was asked to come, seems to not have been necessary for the opposition, because they have stood here today and said they are going to vote against it.
I am glad the member for Winnipeg North instructed us to listen to what the individuals said who came as witnesses to committee. I mentioned Sharon Rosenfeldt, who is the chair of Victims of Violence, and the comments she made about the bill. She also said:
Cutting short foreign criminals' opportunity for lengthy appeals will go a long way in minimizing and preventing the re-victimization of those innocent Canadians who are the victims of foreign offenders.
We are not the only ones saying this. When Ms. Rosenfeldt said this, it led me to think, and we brought together the information regarding all of the appeals that have been filed. I mentioned it when we were speaking at report stage, but it bears repeating. In 2007, at the Immigration Appeal Division, we had 830 appeals. In 2008, we had 954 appeals; in 2009, 1,086 appeals; in 2010, 849; and in 2011, there were 564 appeals. On average, since 2007, there have been over 850 appeals annually to the Immigration Appeal Division from serious criminals trying to delay their deportation.
When we look at the numbers and see the abuse that has taken place, we see a number of individuals and the cases, which have been cited time and time again by members of the government when speaking to the bill, of those who have taken advantage of that appeal process. They actually have a system here in Canada that they can take advantage of.
Tonight the NDP and the Liberal Party have the opportunity to play a role in getting rid of a system that is fraught with abuse, that is being taken advantage of. It has seen countless individuals not only stop their deportation from happening because of the appeal system that is in place but actually become repeat offenders.
When Ms. Rosenfeldt speaks of Canadians becoming further victimized, it is up to us, as a government, to ensure we take action. We have invested hours on the bill in the House of Commons, and at committee with our witnesses and all of the detailed discussion we had during clause-by-clause, and we have spent a lot of time going over each and every amendment. The government did not support amendments brought forward that were going to weaken the bill, but we certainly allowed for the discussion to happen so we could listen to what was being presented. We did in fact accept one amendment, and I appreciate the member for Winnipeg North acknowledging that there was a strengthening of the bill.
At the end of the day, it is our responsibility to act on behalf of victims. It is our responsibility to act. Other countries have surpassed us in terms of timing with regard to this legislation and have moved much further down the road.
We have a partnership with, and we belong, to the Five Country Conference: the U.K., the United States, Australia and New Zealand. They have all acted on these issues. Misrepresentation was one issue. We are the only country that has not acted in a measurable way on these issues.
We stand here today at third reading to say not only are the government and those who sit on this side of the House going to support the legislation, we can actually see if members of the opposition are going to support it this evening. There are a number of other countries that have moved much quicker than this country has and in a much more aggressive way than we have.
The bill, when members look at the detail and where it stands, has three principle parts. The first makes it easier for the government to remove dangerous foreign criminals from our country. The second makes it harder for those who may pose a risk to Canada to enter the country in the first place, and the third removes barriers for genuine visitors who want to come to Canada. We have done a lot of speaking, defending and promoting of the first two parts, which make it easier for government to remove dangerous foreign criminals from our country and make it harder for those who pose a risk to Canada to enter the country in the first place.
One point that I want to highlight is the removing of barriers for genuine visitors who want to come to Canada. The Minister of Public Safety and his ministry plays a role in the legislation as well. We do not need to look much further than section 42, which will actually make it easier for low-risk foreign nationals travelling with their families, who would like to come to Canada on a temporary basis, to become admissible here.
For example, a parent who is inadmissible on health grounds would remain inadmissible and require a temporary resident permit to visit Canada, but the remaining family members would now be admissible. Therefore, we are opening the door to say that, on a temporary basis, they can visit the country. They have a family member who is inadmissible and that family member would have to remain inadmissible, but for the relatives of that family member, there is an opportunity. Currently, they are inadmissible. Under Bill C-43, they would be admissible to Canada.
Further, inadmissible persons seeking ministerial relief would have to submit a formal application. The minister's authority to grant relief on his or her own initiative without a formal application will be explicitly spelled out. For example, the minister could use this explicit authority to facilitate the entry of a head of state who would otherwise be found inadmissible, if the minister was satisfied that the decision was not contrary to national interests.
While I have heard the speakers today and I have heard the members of the committee from the NDP and Liberal Party proclaim that the legislation focuses on those who are criminals who will be removed from our country, who are not citizens, who are permanent residents who have come here. The opposition members have not once stood up to talk about the fact that the legislation actually does allow for the easier transfer of family members who may have a relative who is inadmissible. It would allow them to actually come here to Canada.
A number of people, including the member for Winnipeg North, mentioned the fact that we had witnesses, and that we should have heard and listened to them. Ravi Jain, who is an immigration lawyer, was quoted. When he was asked about this issue, he said:
If you're coming to Canada and you happen to have relatives with you, dependents with you, and if you're inadmissible, but for minor reasons, like you know, maybe some criminality, but not really overly serious, but not organized criminality, or if it's health grounds or some other, you know, misrepresentation or other kinds of grounds, and you're coming, you have special permit to overcome that inadmissibility, then you're no longer going to render your dependents inadmissible at the same time, because right now if you're coming with someone who's inadmissible, if you're the wife or kids or whatever, then you're automatically inadmissible.
Those in opposition to the bill have stated that they have immigration lawyers who have said to them that the bill goes too far. It is great to hear from immigration lawyers who have done their homework and understand the legislation.
The third most important part of the bill, which is recognized by Mr. Jain, is that when an individual is not allowed to come into the country, his or her family at least will be in the position come into the country, when it is a minor offence or an issue of health. Both the Minister Citizenship and Immigration and the Minister of Public Safety will have some latitude in terms of their ability to allow those family members into the country. It did not happen before, but it will happen now.
I want to conclude by thanking all of those from the government side who sit on the immigration committee. We have worked on two very significant pieces of legislation, Bill C-31 and now Bill C-43. One of the most difficult things to do is to ensure one does justice to the legislation as it moves forward.
I can say, and I have not heard in respect to my colleagues on the other side of the House, this about their complaint about this government or committee's ability to give enough time to research, work and move forward on legislation. I thank all the members of the committee who did a tremendous job, including the chairman, who every once in a while even has to call me to order. I know that is hard to believe. We do on occasion certainly enjoy the hard work for us to move forward. It is important to recognize that both members of our committee and those who sit on the opposition benches, regardless of position, have put countless and tireless hours in moving this legislation forward.
This legislation is good for Canada. It will improve the view people from around the world have about how Canada treats those who come here for the purposes of permanent residency and who are in fact criminals.
We are now in a position where the legislation would allow us to do what so many other countries are doing, and that is to ensure we have a fast, strong process that removes foreign criminals from our country.
October 30th, 2012 / 12:50 p.m.
Geoff Regan Halifax West, NS
Oh, boy. Well, that's scary. That's very worrisome. We're talking about fires in people's homes.
Anyway, let me go to Mr. Edwards. You mentioned that DVD knock-offs cost something like $500 million a year. Let's talk about, for instance, software that may come in that's counterfeit. If there's a digital lock on that software, including perhaps counterfeit software, you can't check it without breaking that digital lock to find out whether in fact it's legitimate.
Bill C-11, the new copyright act, prevents you, makes it illegal to break that, even for a legitimate purpose. Was that an error? What would you do about it?
October 25th, 2012 / 4:20 p.m.
Paul Calandra Oak Ridges—Markham, ON
Obviously, it costs thousands of jobs when people are stealing content.
During the Bill C-11 hearings, we heard a lot about digital locks. A lot of people suggested that we could take down digital locks. What's your position on that? How would a lack of digital locks impact your industry?
October 25th, 2012 / 4 p.m.
Terence Young Oakville, ON
Maybe I could just ask a question of anyone who is here to answer. I think you know the entertainment software industry, your association, has voiced support for Bill C-11, the copyright modernization act. Is this piece of legislation supported by your companies, and how would it help your companies or your industry as a whole?
Maybe we could start with Mr. Carrier.
October 18th, 2012 / 11:15 a.m.
Director, Policy and Legal Affairs, Entertainment Software Association of Canada
Thanks. The industry employs almost 16,000 people in a variety of highly skilled and high-paying jobs at nearly 350 companies across the country. Entry-level workers in the industry earn almost twice as much as the average recent college graduate. The average salary across all Canadian provinces is just under $75,000 per year, which is twice the Canadian median. The industry directly contributes $1.7 billion to the Canadian economy and billions more indirectly. Furthermore, game companies drive research and innovation, with 55% of all game companies developing proprietary technology and devoting 25% or more of their overall production budgets to research and development.
Canadian game developers and publishers are clearly world leaders in innovation and creativity, and they contribute significantly to the Canadian knowledge economy. These companies are in the business of creating, financing, and commercializing IP and of developing, marketing, and selling an array of entertainment software products and services to a wide range of customers. Consequently, intellectual property is the cornerstone of our industry, and strong protection and enforcement of IP rights are crucial to the continued growth and success of our sector.
In today's market, developing and publishing a best-selling video game title is a high-risk endeavour often requiring massive investment. A high-end title will typically cost $15 million to $40 million to make, with teams of 100 to 200 people working together for at least two to three years to complete it. It is expected that these development costs will simply continue as we introduce new gaming devices.
The vast majority of revenue in the games industry is earned from upfront sales earned immediately after a game is released in the market but, due to the highly competitive nature of our marketplace, there is a considerable risk that a game will not be able to sell enough units to recoup these million dollar investments. Consequently, game companies must use the revenues from successful titles to offset development costs for the less successful games. In this type of market, piracy of video game software is devastating because it siphons the revenue required to recover the enormous investments necessary to develop successful game products and, left unchecked, leads to studio closures and lost jobs.
By providing rights holders with the tools they need to protect their rights and pursue those who facilitate piracy, a robust IP regime enables creators and companies to choose for themselves the best way to make their products available to the marketplace. This encourages investment in the development of new products, services, and distribution methods, and supports a diverse range of new and innovative business models, which in turn fosters legitimate competition, more consumer choice, and ultimately, lower prices for consumers.
One example of this in the recently passed Bill C-11, the Copyright Modernization Act, are the new provisions aimed at preventing circumvention of technological protection measures, or TPMs, that are used to protect copyrighted works. These are critical to the video game industry because our industry makes extensive use of sophisticated TPMs to protect our products, but in the absence of a legal prohibition circumventing this form of copy protection, a robust and lucrative but illegitimate market for devices and services specifically designed to break our copy protection and facilitate widespread piracy has developed. Indeed, in Canada, commercial operations selling these devices and services that enable piracy of our games operate openly and, consequently, Canada has had the unfortunate reputation of becoming a major transshipment hub for these devices.
Moreover, we are in the midst of a fundamental change in the way we consume our content. Creators increasingly use online platforms and other new and innovative distribution methods to obtain their content. Strong anti-circumvention measures such as those contained in the bill are essential, not only to prevent piracy and allow creators to determine how their works will be used, but also to ensure that the new platforms are secure and maintain the integrity of the nascent and developing digital marketplace. The bill provides urgently needed measures to pursue those who facilitate piracy by trafficking in these devices and services, and we eagerly await the coming into force of these new provisions.
We also strongly recommend the strengthening of civil and criminal remedies for commercial-scale copyright infringements, as well as the introduction of new border measures, such as empowering customs officials to make ex officio seizures of counterfeit and pirate products and circumvention devices at the border without a court order, which they're not presently entitled to do.
Similar measures have actually been introduced in the anti-counterfeiting trade agreement that is also currently under discussion.
Finally, law enforcement and prosecutors should be directed to give a higher priority to IP enforcement as part of their operations and to seek deterring penalties against those who are convicted of IP crime.
Thank you very much, and I look forward to your questions.
Strengthening Military Justice in the Defence of Canada Act
June 19th, 2012 / 11:10 p.m.
Andrew Cash Davenport, ON
Mr. Speaker, it is an honour for me to rise this evening and speak to this bill, but I have to say that I am really getting tired. It has nothing to do with the hour of the evening, but rather listening to the lobotomized government on the other side talking to us about process.
Let us talk about process. In its previous iteration in 2007, this bill died on the order paper. Why was that? The government prorogued this place. That is why it died on the order paper. If the government wants to continue talking about process, then let us talk about process. In 2008 it died again. Why did it die again? The government closed the shutters on this place. It broke its own fixed election laws in 2008 and that is why it died then.
What about 2011 and Bill C-41? That died too because the government fell, in part due to contempt of Parliament. At such a late hour of the evening, clearly I have woken up the sleeping hyenas. It is too bad that the Conservatives cannot actually defend their government in a fulsome way. What do they do? They throw out these pithy remarks about process.
However, we ask a lot of our soldiers, our men and women in uniform. I would like to ask the members on the other side if they think that the kind of remarks and the questions that they are bringing forward tonight are suitable within the context of the conversation we are having. What we are talking about tonight is how we support our men and women in uniform and how we project the image of Canada to the world through our men and women in uniform. If we cannot guarantee for them the kinds of rights in terms of due process that we expect for everyday, ordinary Canadians, then we are doing them a disservice.
Too often, we hear the government using our men and women in uniform as cover for the egregious decisions and laws that it is foisting upon the Canadian public in the guise of a majority in the last election. Thirty-eight percent is not a majority. It has a parliamentary majority here, but we will leave that aside. I may need it a little later in my 20 minutes.
We have a situation here where the government has let down our men and women in uniform far too often. For example, in my hometown in Toronto we have homeless veterans. How can we ask the men and women in the Canadian Forces to do the most extraordinary things on behalf of the rest of us when the government refuses to properly look after our veterans when they are finished their service?
We have a tax on veterans' benefits. There is an inability for many men and women veterans to get the kind of treatment they need for post-traumatic stress disorder. We have a government that tables legislation that strips out of the legislation some of the wise counsel, the wisdom and the compromises that were hashed out in previous Parliaments.
I would like to echo my colleague from Saint-Jean's comment earlier in this debate where he questioned the government's wisdom and decisions in this regard as a waste of taxpayer money because we have debated and put together some very sensible amendments.
Members opposite say to bring it to committee and we will study the amendments. I sat on the committee looking into the copyright legislation, Bill C-11, where a member on the opposite side said, “I'll bet you $10,000 we're going to move amendments”. Every single amendment that we brought forward was rejected, including an amendment that would have enabled those with perceptual disabilities, those who are deaf, those who have vision impairments, to access works that they otherwise would not be able to access. Even an amendment like that was voted down.
Therefore we have no trust in the government's interest in looking at reasoned amendments from our side.
The issue of process is really a concerning question for us here on this side because we see, time and time again, the government playing games with the process, in fact gaming the process, actually.
Tonight is a perfect example. We have seen the government go through time allocation, limiting debate throughout this year that we have been here in this Parliament, time and time again. In fact, with its pooled pension Ponzi scheme, the debate was limited to an hour or two. Then it says, “Okay, we've limited debate. Now, we're going to extend Parliament because we're going to ram all this stuff through in the last minute”.
That is the kind of respect the government has for process in this place.
Now, I will go back to Bill C-15.
We believe there are elements of Bill C-15 that are a step in the right direction. However, unlike the member from the corner party there who asked us, “If there are some things that you agree with, why don't you just vote for them?” I think he wanted to go home early, which is the kind of culture to which his party subscribes. We cannot swallow that.
As my hon. and esteemed colleague, the member for Windsor—Tecumseh, commented earlier, we are not going to vote for a bill that does not support the men and women in our armed forces.
I have sat and listened to the debate, and it is an honour to do that, I have to say. It really is, because I have a chance to listen to some of the acquired wisdom of some of the members here. I started to think, as I was listening to the debate tonight, about some young people I had the good fortune to interview many years ago in Toronto. These were high school students who had decided to sign up for a high school co-op course. The co-op course was, essentially, to join the reserves. That was part of the course. Now, these were young kids. They were 16- and 17-year-olds. They told me they had decided to join this co-op program to get into the reserves, for a variety of reasons. Some of them just did not like school. Some of them had a tough time at home. Some of them were from families where the socio-economic situation was such that they could not see where the future was going to lead them. They thought that maybe the military was an option, and so they joined. They were young kids.
We have a situation where, not too much further down the road, these individuals, 20 years old, 21 years old, could be full members of the Canadian Forces. Maybe they get into a dust-up one night and they get a reprimand or they go before their commanding officer in a summary trial and end up with some kind of criminal record for which, depending on the infraction, it could take them 10 years down the road to clear their name.
The fact is that they would have no recourse to representation. There would not even be transcripts of the procedure. On our side, we see this as a huge problem. It is a judicial issue, but it is also an issue of morale, and we take this issue of morale seriously. That is why we advocate tirelessly on behalf of veterans of the forces, because if we do not do that, then we set up a culture where we are saying that we want the forces to do all this stuff, but then when we are done with them, we do not want to hear from them again.
We adamantly oppose the creation of that kind of culture within the military, and we believe that it is paramount, as parliamentarians, to ensure that kind of culture does not creep in.
We see that time and time again with the government. The Conservatives like to wrap themselves in the flag, but when veterans come to them in need of help, too often there are roadblocks put up in their way.
When I start to think about these kids who I interviewed, they were fresh-faced but a little confused. They were young, and one could see that, depending on how luck went, they could get into trouble. We want to make sure that, in those situations, they are accorded the same rights, the same access that any other Canadian citizen would expect. It is amazing that many Canadians, and we heard tonight that many members of the military and lawyers, are surprised to know that members of the forces do not and cannot access some of these.
We have heard as well that the bill has gone through several different iterations and that some of these amendments have been kept in, and there are some that we can support, but like so many bills that the government puts before this House, we cannot swallow this bill whole. We simply cannot.
It needs to be noted that over the last year the government has, as a way of excusing this anti-democratic practice of serial use of time allocation to shut down debate in this place, tried to say that since we have debated some of these issues in previous Parliaments, we do not need to give them full airing here. Yet this is a case where the Conservatives had a bill ready to go, and as my colleague earlier attested, they could have passed it in March if they had wanted to, but they chose to let it fly, and here we are again.
People must be wondering why the Conservatives would strip out some of these amendments. Why would they reduce the numbers of minor infractions that would potentially lead to criminal records?
We have heard overheated rhetoric from that side too often that they want to use the issue of crime and criminality as something with which to beat people over the head. One has to wonder when we look at the bill whether this is part of a piece of the government. This is about locking things down. This is about crime and about punishment. That is what we are seeing here.
It is really hard to understand why the government would not have retained the amendments proposed by the NDP, which passed at the committee stage last spring after long hours of debate and seemed to have resulted in positive steps forward. By failing to include those amendments in Bill C-15, the Conservatives are undermining the important work of all members in the national defence committee and the recommendations of Canadian Forces representatives during the last session of Parliament.
In other words, the government is not building on the work of past Parliaments. It is not taking best practices or wise counsel. It is not looking at the ways in which parliamentarians have come to mutual consensus. That is what Canadians want to see from this Parliament. They want to see mutual consensus, not dictatorial edicts from a parliamentary majority masquerading as a majority of Canadians who support it, which as we know, is not the case.
Retired Colonel Michel Drapeau has been quoted before in this debate, but I am going to quote him again:
I strongly believe that the summary trial issue must be addressed by this committee. There is currently nothing more important for Parliament to focus on than fixing a system that affects the legal rights of a significant number of Canadian citizens every year.
That is very interesting, because he particularly calls out those of us in Parliament. Nothing is more important than for Parliament to focus on fixing a broken system as opposed to breaking it even further. This is what we are called on to do in Parliament. This is our job.
In fact, Canadians do not understand the amount of time that has been spent stripping away and undermining the work of Parliament in order to push flawed legislation through. There was an example earlier this year of a piece of legislation on which the government refused to acknowledge any amendments, but then it realized at the final minute that maybe it had better introduce some of the amendments. It missed the deadline and the Speaker ruled that the amendments were inadmissible. This is the kind of government we in the House and Canadians are faced with.
Unfortunately those in the military are also faced with a government that does not like to listen. It is the government's way or the highway, even if the highway is a highway to hell. That is the problem with the government. It is obstinate in its refusal to listen to wise counsel. It would rather drive the bus over the cliff than gear down, look at the map and maybe even ask someone it is driving with if there is a better way forward. That is what New Democrats are saying.
Members on this side of the House have spent years engaged in issues of Canadian justice and fairness within the military. It is fair to say and I think members on the government side would acknowledge that we are reasonable in our issues and our demands. What we are asking the government to do and what all Canadians are expecting is for the government to be reasonable too. That is the Canadian way, and we would like the government behave the way Canadians expect it to behave and Parliament to work.
Copyright Modernization Act
June 18th, 2012 / 10:50 p.m.