House of Commons Hansard #92 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was copyright.


Copyright Modernization ActGovernment Orders

1:10 p.m.


Bill Siksay NDP Burnaby—Douglas, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to have the opportunity to participate in the debate on Bill C-32, the copyright modernization act.

It is interesting that we are debating copyright in the House of Commons again. This corner of the House has been clear and consistent over many years about the importance of updating Canada's copyright legislation and regime.

New Democrats have always said, and our spokesperson on this issue, the member for Timmins—James Bay, said it again this morning, that we believe copyright reform is in the centre of what we need to do around digital innovation. It is the centrepiece of a digital innovation strategy. It is not the only piece, but it is the key component of how we approach that. The debate today and the expansion of the Internet and the technological changes we have seen bring that home daily for Canadians.

Our digital innovation strategy would not just be about copyright reform. It would be about codifying the protection for net neutrality to ensure the democracy on the Internet is protected and preserved. The attempts to offer tiered services so some people get their Internet services faster than others and some content goes faster than others need to be addressed. New Democrats have put forward proposals to ensure net neutrality.

We also believe that there needs to be a commitment to national benchmarks for broadband access. Canada needs to put the whole question of broadband access on the front burner to ensure that all Canadians have the broadband access they need to survive and flourish in the current environment.

We are falling behind other countries that are doing more in this area. Australia is a great example of that. It was a key proposal in Australia over a number of years, and it factored again in its most recent election, about it establishment of a national broadband network, which it calls fibre to home, an open access network. With the latest fibre optic technology, it goes to 93% of homes and businesses in Australia. It is a very fast service, at 100 megabits per second.

This is a huge infrastructure project for Australia, but it has served Australia well. It is a huge investment. It is the largest infrastructure investment in the history of Australia, a megaproject that will put the Australians in good stead for the future. We should consider this kind of thing in Canada as well.

Another component of a digital innovation strategy, which the New Democrats believe is very important, is to enhance the role of digital cultural programs to ensure Canadians can fully participate as international citizens within a democratic culturally vibrant public commons. That public commons has changed with the introduction of the Internet. I think all of us realize our lives are very different because of that development.

There are very key things that we need to look at as part of not only this specific discussion about copyright reform, but the broader context of copyright reform in Canada and digital innovation as well.

Bill C-32 is the third attempt to update Canada's copyright laws in the last six years. We have not made any changes to our copyright law since 1997. The previous Liberal government, the Martin government, tried to bring in changes to the copyright regime at the end of its term with Bill C-60.

When the current government came to power, it introduced Bill C-61 nearly two years ago, but withdrew the bill because of very broad criticism. It was too cumbersome and too closely modelled on the restrictive digital millennium copyright act in the United States. There have been significant problems with the U.S. legislation, which I am sure we do not want to repeat in Canada.

Bill C-32 is intended to strike a balance between corporate and consumer interests when it comes to copyright interest.

Regarding some of the highlights of the bill, we are told that the intention of Bill C-32 is to be technologically neutral, that it should apply across a broad range of devices and technologies with a view to ensuring adaptability to a constantly evolving technology environment. We know this is crucial to any new legislation on copyright. It cannot be legislation that becomes outdated almost as quickly as it is passed. It has to be something that serves us into the future. We have to get the broad principles of the legislation right or it will be outdated by the time it even passes through Parliament.

The government has also stated that its aim in updating the Copyright Act is not to punish individual users, but rather to focus its deterrence and enforcement efforts on distributors and large websites that illegally host copyrighted content. We will have to see whether that goal is actually accomplished. There is some criticism that the bill does not have that kind of focus and does not accomplish that goal, but the government has said it hopes it does.

What is included in the bill?

The bill would extend the term of copyright for performers and producers to 50 years from the time of publication of a musical performance.

It would create a new "making available" right in accordance with the WIPO treaties. This measure would give copyright owners exclusive control over how their content would be made available on the Internet.

It would introduce a mandatory review of the Copyright Act to take place very five years. Given the pace of technological change and given that we want to ensure the legislation actually does what it is intended to do, this mandatory review is very crucial.

The bill would formally enshrine in legislation commonplace grey area practices that would enable users to record TV programs for later viewing, or time-shifting, as long as they did not compile a library of recorded content. It would allow for the transfer of songs from CDs onto MP3 players, for instance, or format-shifting, and it would allow folks to make backup copies.

The legislation would also create new limited exceptions to the fair dealing provision of the Copyright Act, including exceptions for educators and for parody and satire. Canadian artists have been demanding this.

It would also create an exception for content creators that would enable the circumvention of DRMs through the express purpose of reverse engineering, for encryption research, for security testing, for perceptual disability and for software interoperability.

The bill would also introduce a new so-called YouTube exemption to deal with mashups that would allow Canadian users to compile clips of copyrighted works into a remixed work, as long as it was not created for commercial purposes.

Bill C-32 would also create a new exception for broadcasters to allow them to copy music for their operations.

The bill would create a carve out for network locks on cellphones.

The bill would also reduce statutory damages from a maximum fine of $20,000 per copyrighted work to a one-time maximum penalty of $5,000 in situations in which copyrighted works had been illegally accessed for non-commercial purposes.

A number of changes are included in the legislation, but that does not mean there are not problems with what is there. New Democrats have identified two key problems with how the Conservative government has approached copyright.

The rights that are offered in the fair dealing, or mashup and parity exemptions, can be overridden by the heavy legal protections being put in place for digital locks. Under Bill C-32, it would be illegal to break a digital lock, even if that lock prevented one from accessing material that one would otherwise be legally entitled to access. In fact, it treats the breaking of digital locks for personal use the same as if the lock were being broken for commercial counterfeiting. The whole question of the use of digital locks and their application, the extent to which they can be applied and how that conflicts with the rights of consumers, which the bill apparently tries to protect, and how those two interact is a huge problem with this legislation.

Consumers are guaranteed certain rights in the bill, but the reality is the holder, the manufacturer or the digital lock producer has the final say so, and those digital locks do seem to override the rights of consumers when it comes to the legislation.

That is a huge problem with Bill C-32. The Conservatives might say that under the World Intellectual Property Organization agreement this is something that is necessary. While those things need to be considered given that commitment, other countries have taken different approaches. So there are alternative ways to deal with this, rather than this reliance on digital locks. That is something that must be discussed further at the committee and could be a deal breaker in terms of the legislation.

Another serious problem with the bill is that a number of previous revenue streams for artists' organizations appear to be undermined through exemptions and changes. The most noticeable one is the government's decision not to extend the private copying levy on CDs to music playing devices. This is a very serious problem. The whole question of how we respond, how we monetize, how we make sure that artists are remunerated for the work they do, given the changing technology, and how we make sure that there is money going into creators' pockets, given these new technologies, is something that we have struggled with for over a century.

Earlier today the NDP's Canadian heritage critic, our spokesperson on this issue, went through the whole history of how that worked from the last century, starting with John Philip Sousa denouncing the threat of mechanical music, the roller piano. He said the technology would destroy the livelihood of American musicians. Music publishers, people who publish sheet music, were similarly concerned about the introduction of the record player. They thought that would mean the end of artists being effectively or appropriately remunerated for their work.

The radio was new technology and it was thought that it too would end the ability of creators to be properly remunerated for their work. But we found ways through all of those issues, and that brings us up to today. So the scenario has not changed, and the need for creativity continues as well.

Here in Canada, when we were faced with the situation of artists losing remuneration because of people copying their works onto blank cassettes and blank CDs to make mixed tapes, and so on, they were not being compensated. Artists were not being compensated, and that was a serious issue in terms of their incomes. We found a made-in-Canada solution, which was to introduce a levy on blank cassettes and CDs, a levy that is paid to a copyright collective and then paid to creators, to artists. It has been hugely successful in Canada and has been very important to creators in terms of maintaining their income and ensuring that they were properly compensated for their work.

That continues to be an important approach that has broad support. I know New Democrats have consistently said this is something that we should be considering today as well, extending that levy to music playing devices such as iPods and MP3 players so that artists could be compensated appropriately for the works that are transferred onto those devices.

There is support for this among creators as well. Alain Pineau, the national director of the Canadian Conference of the Arts, has said that the bill's failure to extend copyright collectives into the digital area is a huge problem and that it bypasses that solution in favour of lawsuits.

If we had the choice of engaging a system that we worked out and developed here in Canada, which has been hugely successful, which has met the goals of ensuring that artists and creators are properly remunerated for their work, if we had the choice between that and forcing creators and publishers into court against consumers, the choice for me is absolutely clear that the levy is the way to go.

Unfortunately, the Conservatives have politicized the conversation about the levy. They have talked about it as if it were a tax. It is not a tax. It is a levy that is directed for a specific purpose, and I think it is a purpose that Canadians can support.

I think Canadians want to make sure that artists are appropriately compensated for their work and that they make an appropriate living from the important work they do from which we all benefit. I think that is something that Canadians would get behind.

It is a system that is in place; it is not a novel idea. It is a system that was criticized when it was first brought in, but I think that criticism died down when the fairness of the system became widely apparent.

That is another very serious problem with this legislation. We want to make sure that there is a system of copyright based on the principles of fair compensation for creators and artists and access to consumers. Those are very appropriate and needed principles. Remuneration of artists and creators for their work is crucial to the ongoing cultural viability of Canada and to the Canadian cultural sector.

Access is crucial for people in Canada who enjoy the work of creators and artists. I do not think that criminalizing consumers, putting the emphasis on finding ways to go after people who violate copyright, is the way to go. It takes its inspiration from the U.S. Digital Millennium Copyright Act, which we know has been a huge failure in a number of cases.

We have seen in the United States where children, parents and others have been sued, usually by large recording companies, for the violation of copyright, in a way that I think any reasonable person would see as unfair and inappropriate. This aspect of the American legislation is something that I hope we would not be copying in Canada. We should put a digital lock on that idea because it is just not appropriate for use here, especially when we have a solution that we created in this country and has served us well.

New Democrats also support the idea of collective licensing. We support fair access for educational materials, and in this bill there is a very troubling provision that digital lessons for long-distance learning would have to be destroyed within 30 days of the end of the course. This would treat students in digital learning environments as second-class citizens and undermine the potential of new learning opportunities.

My colleague has likened this provision to book burning. Requiring the destruction of those course materials within a time period at the end of the course really goes against the kind of freedom of intellectual inquiry that we want to stimulate in Canada. It amounts to a digital equivalent of book burning, hardly something that we want to be encouraging in an educational setting.

As well, the requirement that teachers would have to destroy lesson plans, as contained in clause 27 of this legislation, is extremely troubling. We want to encourage people to use distance education as a way of upgrading skills and getting the education and training they require, but we also want to make sure they have access to the materials they need to gain that education. Sometimes those materials are required for ongoing purposes. Clause 27 of this bill is a very serious issue in that it requires the destruction of course materials and lesson plans. Certainly it will be something that we will raise as best we can in the coming discussions.

There is much that we have to talk about on this issue of copyright legislation. We tried and we are here again debating it in the House of Commons after a number of ill-fated attempts. I am not sure that we have found the right legislation yet, but the New Democrats are here to participate in that debate and work to see if we can improve the legislation. Hopefully that is possible, but if not, we may have to make other decisions on it.

We want to work with everyone on whom this legislation would have an impact, to see if we can find an appropriate copyright regime for Canada for the 21st century and for a time of changing technology.

Copyright Modernization ActGovernment Orders

1:30 p.m.


Charlie Angus NDP Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, I listened with great interest to my hon. colleague, who I think raised a number of serious issues in terms of copyright reform and some of the fundamental problems that still remain with this bill.

I think it is important to put into the context that some of today's most respectable corporate interests in terms of defending copyright and defending the rights holders were, yesterday and the day before, some of our most famous pirates. Using Hollywood as an example, most people think Hollywood was set up because they had nice weather year round.

In fact, Hollywood was set up to escape the copyright patents of Thomas Edison. Thomas Edison set up the original motion picture film technology and he used his copyright patents to snuff out any competing business. He was quite ruthless in using the courts to go after anybody who was attempting to set up movie theatres back in the early days.

A number of independent producers, who were the BitTorrents of the day, went out west where they were just slightly beyond the long arm of Thomas Edison's corporate reach and they set up Hollywood. Then, of course, once Hollywood had gathered up enough power, it decided to challenge the Edison monopoly in court. Then Hollywood became the standard.

We can remember in the 1970s and 1980s when the VHS recorder came along. Jack Valenti, who was the long-time spokesman of the movie industry, the way Charlton Heston is for the NRA, said that the VHS technology was the “Boston Strangler” that would destroy artists, because if people were allowed to watch movies on VHS recorders, it would destroy the entire business model on which Hollywood was founded.

Of course, at the time, what was one of the private companies that was supporting the VHS? It was Sony. Sony had a big market to sell the VHS players. Sony was being denounced by the Jack Valentis of Hollywood. Hollywood was saying that it would be the end of its business model.

Of course, we know that Hollywood survived and grew because it created a whole new market in the sale of what was VHS, and then DVDs.

I would ask my hon. colleague why he thinks the government continues to be afraid of new technologies and uses digital locks to shut down developing business models.

Copyright Modernization ActGovernment Orders

1:30 p.m.


Bill Siksay NDP Burnaby—Douglas, BC

Mr. Speaker, I always have trouble determining the motivation of the Conservative government, so I am not sure I have a good answer to that.

It strikes me that the governments in this country have been struggling with how to proceed on this. I think part of it is their inability to think creatively and go out on their own. They have been unwilling to think about what is best for Canada and what is best for Canadians. They have been unwilling to look at the models that have been developed here in this country to find our own solutions within the kinds of international agreements and the kind of technological environment we have.

We have done that in the past. We did that with the levy on blank CDs and disks. So why we cannot apply that same kind of spirit to the overall copyright regime is beyond me.

It seems to me that we have relied too heavily on the American example. We wanted to go their route and when we could not get away with that in this country, we fell into this confusion about where to go.

We have seen the doom and gloom predictions for many years with each technology. It seemed too complicated to know what to do, yet somehow people have figured out that there is a way to both ensure the rights of consumers and ensure that artists are properly remunerated.

I do not think we are beyond finding that solution in this day and age. There are lots of folks who believe that the digital lock changes are not the appropriate way to go. The Business Coalition for Balanced Copyright has weighed in on that issue. The Retail Council of Canada, universities, booksellers and the Canadian Library Association have all raised concerns about the dependence on digital locks.

I think there is a way through this. I hope we can find it in this Parliament.

Copyright Modernization ActGovernment Orders

1:35 p.m.


Charlie Angus NDP Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, I want to follow up on something my hon. colleague mentioned earlier; it is one of the most troubling aspects of the bill. There is a whole sleight of hand here, a set of provisions that we will never be able to exercise, promises of consumer rights that will be taken away by the digital locks.

There is one provision that stands out in clause 27, under which it would be legal to make a lesson for digital learning. People in isolated first nations communities in the north, and small communities across rural Canada who want to improve their education, would have legal access to digital learning. However, after 30 days their class notes would have to be destroyed. It is the equivalent of book-burning in the modern age.

It staggers the imagination that the government's approach to digital learning in a region as vast as Canada, where many people are spread out and in need of opportunities for education and cultural development, would shackle students and teachers engaged in long-distance learning with a provision that would require class notes to be burned or destroyed through digital locks after 30 days.

In effect, it creates two tiers of students in this country: those who sit in classrooms and receive photocopies that they get to keep; and those who live in remote areas of Canada. These last, when they attempt to improve their educational opportunities, are told by the Conservative government that their ability to get an education is a threat to a corporate business model that has never even been explained. Does my hon. colleague think that the only reasonable thing to do is take a big red pen, strike that section out, and “mark it zero, Donny” because the government has gone over the line?

Copyright Modernization ActGovernment Orders

1:35 p.m.


Bill Siksay NDP Burnaby—Douglas, BC

Mr. Speaker, I know my colleague will be participating in the ongoing discussions on this legislation, and I am sure he has his big red pen handy for clause 27. It is one of the worst aspects of this legislation. It would require students to get rid of any class notes or lesson plans after 30 days. It is difficult to understand why such a thing would be part of the copyright regime.

It is a smack in the face to long-distance education, which has made huge advances. The possibilities have increased dramatically with the Internet. It makes more things possible for students who do not have access to urban educational institutions. Limiting the ability of our citizens to take advantage of the technology does not make sense. It is beyond me why this would be in the legislation. To require students and teachers to get rid of their class materials after a short deadline is not sensible at all.

We are also concerned that similar punitive measures could be brought to bear against librarians handling digital inter-library loans, which, under this legislation, would have to be destroyed after five days. This is something that needs to be examined; it probably should not be in the legislation. It discourages folks from accessing the kind of information, education, and training that would allow them to reach their goals, contribute to their communities, earn their livings, and contribute to their families' income. None of these things will assist people to do that.

Copyright Modernization ActGovernment Orders

1:40 p.m.


Peter Julian NDP Burnaby—New Westminster, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise to speak to Bill C-32, An Act to amend the Copyright Act.

I would like to start by praising the member for Timmins—James Bay. He is the first digital affairs critic in the history of Parliament, named by our leader to push the government on digital affairs. He has a background as an artist who has depended on copyright. This bill is a result of his endless efforts to try to get the government to understand, after four years of sitting on its derriere, that they had to take action on copyright. It is because of the member for Timmins—James Bay that the government has moved at all.

There are positive provisions in the bill. But as with virtually everything else the government has done, there is an element of ineptness, whether it appears in bad financial management, the treatment of veterans, or corruption inside the government. In fact, everything that the government promised four years ago it has managed to botch or deliberately mishandle.

In this case, we see provisions that we can only liken to digital torches and pitchforks. Having been thrown into the bill, these provisions diminish some of the good elements that the member for Timmins—James Bay was able to promote and put into effect.

We have been calling for a mandatory review of the Copyright Act. When we look at the history of copyright and the new technology, we see that this type of mandated review is absolutely essential.

We have new exceptions to the fair-dealing provisions of the Copyright Act. They create an exception for content creators that would enable the circumvention of DRM for the express purpose of reverse engineering. At the same time, they introduce a number of exceptions that artists have called for. But the problem is that the negative elements of the bill overshadow these positive elements.

Here we have the introduction of long-overdue copyright legislation, something the government has been sitting on for four years. But now we see that, as a result of mishandling, this copyright legislation is bringing as much bad as good.

This is a challenge for Parliament. In this corner of the House, the member for Timmins—James Bay has expressed our opinion that this legislation is long overdue. There are important elements that have to be brought forward, but at the same time, the digital torches and pitchfork of the bill have to be dealt with in committee. Though we would favour pushing this forward to committee, we recognize that the committee will have much work to do to fix this the bill.

The member for Timmins—James Bay talked about the history of copyright, about how new technologies have often been feared by those with vested interests in existing technologies. Player pianos, recordings, radios, computer access to music: all these new technologies experienced obstruction from established interests attempting to protect themselves.

Owing to the hard work of the first digital affairs critic in Canadian parliamentary history, the NDP is pushing forward with what we feel is essential, and that is a balanced approach.

This bill does not have that balance. That is the fundamental problem. The bill ignores the three key components that would give us a balanced approach: copyright maintenance, public access to artistic productions, and rewards for artists. This balance has not yet been achieved in the bill, despite the efforts of the member for Timmins—James Bay to inform the government and lead it in the right direction.

What are the key problems?

First, there are the digital locks.

Second, to provide artists with reliable revenue streams, we proposed extending the levy on materials for music-playing devices. That was an adult approach. We are saying that we need to extend the levy for new devices to ensure that artists receive the remuneration that they need to feed their families. The current government, however, has childishly challenged the adult proposals of the NDP. It has given this legislation a remedy that only large corporations could use: the so-called court remedy. If we go to court, we have to pay a lawyer. Struggling artists cannot do that. That is why there has been so much criticism of this bill.

Third, there is the whole issue of collective licensing, of fair access to educational materials. This is not in the bill. Yet it is something that New Democrats, notably the member for Timmins—James Bay, have put forward as a principle essential to all copyright legislation.

This omission is perhaps the most egregious aspect of this bill. It is one of these digital torches and pitchforks. I am going to read an excerpt from Bill C-32. This is what it says about students and educational institutes. This is the famous clause 27 that my colleague, the member for Burnaby—Douglas, cited earlier. It contains new provisions that would add a new section to 30.01 of the Copyright Act. It says it is not an infringement of copyright for a student to receive a lesson. “However, the student shall destroy the reproduction within 30 days after the day on which the students who are enrolled in the course...have received their final course evaluations”.

That is the famous 30-day, retroactive book-burning clause of this copyright. It is absolutely absurd that those in the gallery, students across the country, would have to destroy these educational materials 30 days after they received their final course evaluation. It seems absurd. When I first heard about this, I said that the member for Timmins—James Bay could not be right. But he was right again: these provisions are clearly in the bill.

It goes on, and it gets worse. Here is the legal mandate:

The educational institution and any person acting under its authority...shall (a) destroy any fixation of the lesson within 30 days after the day on which the students who are enrolled in the course...have received their final course evaluations;

The university, the college, the educational institution has to destroy the material. The student has to destroy the material. Penalties kick in if they do not destroy the material. This is retroactive book burning. This takes us back to the Middle Ages. It is digital torches and pitchforks. It is absolutely absurd. It is laughable that the government would even bring forward such provisions, but there they are in the bill. That is why we are saying that we will not stand for it. We are going to ensure that those provisions are taken out at committee, because they would create two classes of students in this country.

It creates a class of students, largely urban, who can access educational institutions very easily. In the world's largest democracy, which at length and breadth is eight million square kilometres, we cannot have students in northern communities, rural communities and aboriginal communities destroying the material they use online to try to get to the next level of their education.

This is yet another attack by the government on rural and northern Canadians. There seems to be a lot of it. The government simply does not seem to like rural Canada. It likes to use rural Canadians, but does not seem to like rural Canada very much if it put these provisions in the bill.

It goes on to say that a library, archive or museum or a person acting under the authority of one must take measures to prevent the person who has requested it from using the digital copy for more than five business days from the day on which the person first uses it.

Libraries, archives and museums, particularly those in rural areas but also those right across the country, have to prevent people from using a digital copy for more than five business days otherwise they will be in contravention of the act. That is absolutely absurd. What was the government thinking when it put provisions such as the 30 day retroactive book burning and the 5 day retroactive library burning in the act? These are absurd provisions. It is unfortunate that these provisions overshadow some of the good provisions the NDP was able to push the government to observe.

As I mentioned earlier, there are some positive provisions in the bill. However, here is the rub and the symbol of the government's ineptness on digital issues, and that is the digital lock.

Despite all of the principles that are put into play, the positive aspects of the bill and the exemptions, we hit the digital pitchfork at clause 41.1(a). This is not a long a clause at all. It says very simply “No person shall circumvent a technological protection measure”; that is TPMs, or digital locks. This means that despite all the protections, expansions and exceptions that may be in the act, it is overridden by clause 41.1(1), which simply put says a person cannot circumvent.

What does that mean? We are talking about the government imposing penalties of $5,000. It could be less. In clauses 41.19 and 41.2, we see what the courts are directed to do. This is a court issue. We are talking about protections and exceptions. If a company decides to put a digital lock on and a person even attempts to exercise the exceptions in the act, that individual is out of luck.

Clause 41.19 states that:

A court may reduce or remit the amount of damages it awards in the circumstances described in subsection 41.1(1) if the defendant satisfies the court that the defendant was not aware, and had no reasonable grounds to believe, that the defendant’s acts constituted a contravention of that subsection.

In other words, there may be a reduction if the defendant defends himself or herself. We might be talking about young kids or teenagers. We might be talking about students. We might be talking about librarians. Who knows. In that case, the person has to defend himself or herself in court.

We have talked about the five day retroactive book burning and the thirty day retroactive student book burning. Clause 41.2 states that if a court finds the defendant that is a library, archive, museum or an educational institution has contravened these sections and the defendant satisfies the court that he or she was not aware that his or her actions constituted a contravention of that subsection, the plaintiff is not entitled to any remedy other than an injunction.

These are not small exceptions. This imposes a digital lock above and beyond anything else. Therefore, the good components of the act, which we mentioned earlier, are then subjected to digital lock, the TPM, that the government has included in its legislation in the now infamous section 41.1(a). People just simply cannot contravene or circumvent a digital lock. That is absurd.

Here is what some of the folks have said about the bill.

The Business Coalition for Balanced Copyright has said, “some parts of the legislation unfairly restrict consumer freedom and need to be revised before being passed by Parliament such as the inability to circumvent digital locks for private use”.

The Retail Council of Canada has said, “parts of the legislation unfairly restrict consumer freedom and choice and need to be revised before being passed by Parliament”.

The Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada is concerned about the overly strict prohibition against circumvention of technical measures.

The Canadian Booksellers Association would like to see the government allow the public, particularly students and educators, to circumvent digital locks on materials sought for educational and strictly non-commercial purposes.

The Canadian Library Association has said it “is disappointed that longstanding rights, the heart of copyright's balance, as well as the new rights, are all tempered by the over-reach of digital locks”. I talked about that earlier. This is what our critic on digital affairs and the NDP have brought forward, that balance.

Today, in the newspaper, Alain Pineau, national director of the Canadian Conference of the Arts, said that it bypassed the issue of extending copyright collectives in favour of lawsuits.

We are hearing concerns about how the legislation has been put forward from a wide variety of sources across the country. Earlier the member for Timmins—James Bay talked about the positive comments about the levy we proposed for artists. The National Post and the Edmonton Journal were two of those newspapers cited.

We very clearly have public and organizations all saying that the NDP is right to criticize aspects of the bill. That is what we have done. The member for Timmins—James Bay has pushed the government. We will ensure that the ineptitude of the government does not hurt the bill and that we can get the digital and digital pitchforks out of Bill C-32 before it comes back to Parliament for consideration.

Copyright Modernization ActGovernment Orders

1:55 p.m.


The Deputy Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

The hon. member will have his 10-minute question and comment period after question period. We will now move on to statements by members.

Citizens for Clean AirStatements By Members

1:55 p.m.


Terence Young Conservative Oakville, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise to recognize a citizen's group in Oakville that has made a tremendous difference in our community, C4CA.

Citizens for Clean Air was created for one purpose: to stop the unhealthy plan by the Dalton McGuinty government to build a massive gas-fired power plant, dumping tonnes of toxins and deadly particulate matter into the air over our homes and schools.

Founding president, Doug MacKenzie, conceived Citizens for Clean Air, with the dedicated help of Oakville citizens Frank Clegg, Sue Hyatt and many others, including Pauline Watson. A host of women acted as street captains to organize a huge protest at Queen's Park.

On October 6, Ontario's Liberal government, undeterred by health concerns, the crash in value of people's homes and even an explosion in a similar plant in Connecticut that killed five people, but facing a provincial election next year, finally caved: C4CA won.

Despite a raft of people who claimed credit, everyone in Oakville knows that this was grassroots democracy in action. Oakville is forever grateful to C4CA.

Alma Mater SocietyStatements By Members

2 p.m.


Joyce Murray Liberal Vancouver Quadra, BC

Mr. Speaker, my riding of Vancouver Quadra is the proud home of the University of British Columbia, rated in the top 40 universities worldwide.

This year, UBC's student government, the Alma Mater Society, celebrates its 95th anniversary. Since 1915, the AMS has supported and advocated for UBC students. Today it is actively involved in the community on and off campus, and serves more than 46,000 students.

I commend the students of UBC for creating such effective representation, with programs such as a student food bank, free tutoring services, campus safety and child care funding. AMS's current goal is to help decrease the university's environmental impact and to construct the most sustainable student union building in North America.

I applaud the AMS for 95 years of commitment and success.

Caregivers' WeekStatements By Members

2 p.m.


Carole Freeman Bloc Châteauguay—Saint-Constant, QC

Mr. Speaker, since 2007, the first week of November has been officially recognized as Caregivers' Week in Quebec. It is a time not only to celebrate and honour caregivers, but also to increase public awareness about caregiving issues, as well as to promote the public policy reforms needed to encourage all of us and all levels of government to provide more support for the people who do this vital work.

To care for a loved one, caregivers must be able to share, inspire and remain open, but they also need to have the time and financial resources to do so. I therefore rise here today not only to thank all caregivers, but also to let them know that their dedication is, in my opinion, a perfect example of the altruism that remains, and will always be, an essential part of our collective well-being.

Considering our aging population and the considerable pressure this situation will put on families and health care systems, the government must act as quickly as possible. For example, now would be a good time to increase tax credits for natural caregivers and relax the eligibility criteria.

Canadian Wheat BoardStatements By Members

2 p.m.


Pat Martin NDP Winnipeg Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, the government is taking its ideological crusade against the Canadian Wheat Board too far. Now it seems it is withholding initial payments to producers as a cheap and irresponsible way to interfere with the election of Wheat Board directors.

It does not take Treasury Board eight weeks to get initial payments to grain producers, except when the Minister of Agriculture, Mr. Gerrymander, does not want nice, big, fat cheques from the Canadian Wheat Board winding up in the mailboxes at the same time as the ballots for Wheat Board directors. It may give farmers a warm and fuzzy feeling about this great Canadian institution that is providing big, fat initial payment cheques to itself.

I do not understand why the minister, Mr. Gerrymander, does not give up his ideological crusade to destroy the Canadian Wheat Board. It is the largest and most successful grain marketing company in the world. It is a great Canadian prairie institution and there is no business case for destroying the Canadian Wheat Board. He should stop his vain and failed attempts to bring down this great institution.

Vancouver Island RaidersStatements By Members

2 p.m.


James Lunney Conservative Nanaimo—Alberni, BC

Mr. Speaker, they have done it again. On Saturday, the Vancouver Island Raiders blasted past the Hamilton Hurricanes to capture the Intergold Cup.

The Raiders' 38-13 win comes after a fifth straight season dominating the B.C. Junior Football League. The Raiders have led the CJFL, capturing the national championship in 2006, 2008 and 2009.

They will be fired up to defend their title against the Saskatoon Hilltops in the Canadian final on November 13. Led by president and 2008 Nanaimo Citizen of the Year, Hadi Abassi, and head coach “Snoop”, the Raiders beat their own record this season by gaining more than 5,000 all-purpose yards. Five Raiders won BCFC major awards and eight earned all-star titles.

Vancouver Islanders and Nanaimo residents in particular are tremendously proud of their home team. We wish them every success in what promises to be a top-notch championship game for the CJFL title in Saskatoon on November 13.

Go Raiders, fire it up.

Media Literacy WeekStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.


Michael Savage Liberal Dartmouth—Cole Harbour, NS

Mr. Speaker, I am proud to recognize this week as national Media Literacy Week. The aim of this week is to encourage parents, educators and community leaders to integrate and practise media and digital literacy in their homes, schools and communities.

In an era where communication technology enables us to access multiple media sources, it is increasingly necessary that Canada's youth are equipped with the skills to decipher messages that they encounter.

The theme of this year's event is “Gender and the Media”. Young people and society in general are exposed to a variety of idealized images and gender features prominently in this regard. Positive aspects of popular culture can be harnessed to promote realistic and healthy role models to youth; however, repeated exposure to negative and unfair stereotypes that deal with body image and gender can affect identity and self-image.

It is important that Canada's youth are able to empower themselves through media interaction. This is one of the important objectives that Media Literacy Week aims to achieve. I thank the Canadian Teachers' Federation and the Media Awareness Network for their leadership and their continuing excellent work. It is a job well done.

Federal Business InitiativeStatements By Members

November 2nd, 2010 / 2:05 p.m.


Rick Dykstra Conservative St. Catharines, ON

Mr. Speaker, science and engineering graduates with innovative market-driven ideas will benefit from a new program to build their business skills. The minister for FedDev for southern Ontario and I had the opportunity to announce the new scientists and engineers in business initiative at Brock University.

This initiative will provide funding over the next four years to not-for-profit organizations and post-secondary institutions such as Brock University and Niagara College. This will help build the entrepreneurial skills of recent graduates and graduate students in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields who have developed fresh ideas for business start-ups and support them as they bring their ideas to the market in order to expand their business.

This is a direct result of the economic reinvestment strategy in Ontario.

It is a major step forward in keeping our talented sons and daughters, our best and brightest in St. Catharines. It is another example of the economic action plan hard at work.

Sodium ConsumptionStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.


Luc Malo Bloc Verchères—Les Patriotes, QC

Mr. Speaker, excessive salt consumption is a public health issue. Given that 80% of the sodium we consume comes from processed foods, plenty of groups and individuals have advocated for reduced sodium content in those foods.

Popular radio and television host Paul Houde has made it his mission to talk about this important issue whenever he has the chance. Salt intake is one of the main risk factors for heart disease and stroke, which still take the lives of far too many people every year.

Paul Houde was lucky. In September, he underwent quintuple heart bypass surgery because of irregular blockages. We are glad the operation was a success, and we wish him a speedy recovery.

The food industry has agreed that reducing the salt content of its products is a priority. Now those companies need to work faster to make changes that will protect the health of those who contribute to their bottom lines.

Arts and CultureStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.


Royal Galipeau Conservative Ottawa—Orléans, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages will host a screening of Barney's Version at the National Arts Centre this evening. Based on a novel by Mordecai Richler, the movie has received a great deal of international recognition and was well received at film festivals in Toronto and Vancouver.

Barney's Version is the fifth production presented by the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages, after One Week, De père en flic, Gunless and, just recently, the extraordinary Incendies.

More than 1,000 people are expected for this evening's presentation, making this the biggest turnout so far.

Such events showcase the wealth of Canadian talent.

Our government is proud to promote Canadian films such as Barney's Version and we will continue to support our nation's most talented filmmakers, actors and artists.

Worldwide NET Cancer Awareness DayStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.


Carolyn Bennett Liberal St. Paul's, ON

Mr. Speaker, it is my honour to rise today to support Worldwide NET Cancer Awareness Day on November 10.

NET, or neuroendocrine tumours, is the umbrella term for a group of unusual cancers which develop themselves in the diffuse endocrine system. They are found most often in the lung or gastrointestinal system but can be found in other parts of the body.

Often misdiagnosed, up to 90% of the time, as another kind of ailment, NET cancer is now twice as common as pancreatic cancer. That makes it the fastest growing cancer community worldwide.

I rise here today with the hope that these words will spark awareness of this often under-reported, underserved and unknown cancer group.

Across our country, there are limited treatment options for Canadians suffering from NET tumours. Health Canada has yet to approve yttrium and lutetium. It is my hope that by making more people aware of this cancer there will be steps taken to invest more resources into helping diagnose, treat and care for NET cancer patients in Canada and around the world.

Holocaust Education WeekStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.


Pierre Poilievre Conservative Nepean—Carleton, ON

Mr. Speaker, yesterday marked the beginning of the 30th Holocaust Education Week during which scholars, artists and, most important, survivors will educate all of us on the horrors of the Shoah and the courage of its victims.

There is no purer example of unvarnished evil than the totalitarian Nazi regime, an evil which culminated in the industrial scale systematic murder of six million Jews, in addition to Poles, homosexuals, political opponents and others.

As I walked arm-in-arm with rabbis and survivors in the 2009 “March of the Living” between Auschwitz and Birkenau, I committed myself to help educate others at these odious events.

Throughout this week's program titled, “We Who Survive”, Holocaust victims will share Shoah testimony. These stories are painful to hear, but hear them we must.

Never forget. Never again.

The EconomyStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.


Peter Julian NDP Burnaby—New Westminster, BC

Mr. Speaker, the last 20 years of right-wing trade and economic policy has been particularly harmful for Canada's youth. Middle class and poor Canadians have seen rising debt and a fall in real income over the last 20 years. Inequality in Canada has reached the same level as in the 1920s. The consequences have been particularly egregious for our youngest generation.

The jobs created in today's economy are mostly part-time or temporary service jobs with lower starting wages than were present in the labour market 20 years ago and with no benefits or pensions.

We need a positive change away from the choices made in Parliament by the Conservatives and their Liberal predecessors; a change that confronts head on the unprecedented levels of student debt, the increasing scarcity of goods and family-sustaining full-time jobs; a change that stops the reckless outsourcing and offshoring of Canadian companies overseas; and a change that restores equity by ensuring that every Canadian, including Canada's youth, gets a fair share of Canada's wealth.

The NDP embodies this change for better, more balanced economic and trade policies that benefit all Canadians.

Édouard CarpentierStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.


Steven Blaney Conservative Lévis—Bellechasse, QC

Mr. Speaker, Quebec has just lost the man we all knew as Édouard Carpentier, a legend in Quebec wrestling and the best wrestler of his time. He was born Édouard Wiercowicz to a Polish mother and a Russian father in France on July 17, 1926.

This man, who would go on to incredible success, was captured and imprisoned by the Germans in the second world war. He managed to escape, but would risk his life by working for the French Resistance, which earned him the Croix de Guerre for bravery.

Édouard Carpentier was the “man with the flying feet”. He won his first bout at the Montreal Forum on April 18, 1956, and his rise would be as dazzling as his immense popularity.

He was a proponent of “scientific” wrestling and was known as the “Flying Frenchman” for his high-flying style. He fought epic fights and left us with colourful expressions such as “Believe me, it hurts!”

Today we pay tribute to a high-calibre athlete who captivated our collective imagination and raised the profile of Quebec wrestling. “God willing, see you next week.”

Édouard CarpentierStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.


Louis Plamondon Bloc Bas-Richelieu—Nicolet—Bécancour, QC

Mr. Speaker, I too am pleased to pay tribute to Édouard Carpentier, who passed away on Saturday. Known as an acrobat in the ring, he was a legend in Quebec wrestling.

As a 16-year-old, he was a member of the French Resistance during World War II, and he was awarded the Croix de guerre and the Croix du Combattant for his bravery. He also participated in the 1948 and 1952 Olympics in gymnastics.

Beginning in 1956, the Flying Frenchman, known for revolutionizing wrestling with his acrobatic style, thrilled Quebec, in particular because of his rivalry with wrestlers Mad Dog Vachon and Wild Killer Kowalski. He also discovered the famous wrestler, André the Giant.

In the 1980s, he hosted Sunday morning wrestling shows. His memorable sayings were “Believe me, it hurts” and “See you next week, God willing”.

My Bloc colleagues and I extend our sincere condolences to his family, friends and admirers.

Stanley BakerStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.


Marlene Jennings Liberal Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to pay tribute and honour the life of Stanley Baker, a long-time Liberal and former president of my riding association of Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine.

Mr. Baker passed away yesterday, November 1, at the age of 87. He was an active member of the community, with the Rotary Club of Westmount, the Congregation Shaar Hashomayim, the Westmount Lawn Bowling Club and the McGill Institute for Learning and Retirement. I admired him greatly for his commitments.

On behalf of the Liberal Party of Canada, I thank Mr. Baker for his dedication to and his work for the party.

He will be missed by the community, not only because of his commitment, but also because of his kindness and warm personality.

I offer my sincere condolences to his son, Dr. Arnie, and his daughter Barbara.

He will certainly be missed by all of us.

Battle of PasschendaeleStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.


Greg Kerr Conservative West Nova, NS

Mr. Speaker, this year marks the 93rd anniversary of a significant milestone in the first world war, the Battle of Passchendaele.

After the Canadian success at Vimy Ridge, it was decided that our soldiers would be sent north to Belgium.

After three gruelling months under extremely harsh conditions, the Canadian Corps captured the town of Passchendaele on November 10, 1917. Four thousand Canadian casualties and nearly 12,000 wounded were left in the battle's wake.

Canada's success at Passchendaele added to our nation's reputation as the best offensive fighting force on the western front. This monumental victory meant our military was at the forefront of the advance, which eventually won the war for the Allies the following year.

The brave soldiers who fought at Passchendaele were among the more than 600,000 Canadians and Newfoundlanders who served during the first world war.

Today we remember the heroic and historic efforts of those who fought for freedom. Today we remember the Battle of Passchendaele.

Potash IndustryOral Questions

2:15 p.m.


Ralph Goodale Liberal Wascana, SK

Mr. Speaker, some time after stock markets close this afternoon and in the midst of the U.S. midterm elections, the Prime Minister is set to announce that Canadians will soon lose control of their potash industry. If the Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan is sold out to BHP, control moves from a board in Saskatoon, where two-thirds of the directors are Canadian, to a very different board in Australia, with maybe one Canadian as a director out of 11.

Why does the Prime Minister think that is beneficial?

Potash IndustryOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta


Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, of course the house leader for the Liberal Party continues to chase one rumour after another on this particular matter. I can assure him the Minister of Industry will make a decision according to a legal process. His decision will be shaped not by the policy of the previous Liberal government, which rubber-stamped every single takeover; his decision will be based on the best long-term interests of this country.