MP REPORT: Modernizing copyright rules

Colin Mayes says government has delivered on pledge to introduce copyright legislation that balances needs of creators and users...

Recognizing the critical role a modern copyright regime plays in Canada’s digital economy, our government has delivered on its commitment to introduce and seek swift passage of copyright legislation that balances the needs of creators and users.

On Sept. 29, 2011, we re-introduced the Copyright Modernization Act, which demonstrates our Government’s commitment to establishing Canada as a leader in the digital economy of the future.

Bill C-11 includes provisions that strengthen the ability of copyright owners to control the use of their online works in order to prevent widespread illicit use and to promote creativity, innovation and legitimate business models. Such provisions include legal protection for technological protection measures (TPMs).

TPMs are sometimes used as part of the business model of copyright owners to prevent copying and unauthorized access to their works. The use of TPMs can allow for the monetization of creative content and the protection of the potentially significant investments made during the development phase of these products.

Providing legal protection against the circumvention of TPMs will bring Canada in line with international standards, as this protection is a requirement of the World Intellectual Property Organization Internet Treaties.  It will support a creator’s ability to advance new digital business models and compete on the international stage, as well as attract new investments, which will in turn promote economic growth and help protect and create jobs in Canada.

Copyright is a marketplace framework law. Accordingly, copyright owners may decide whether to use TPMs for their content and customers whether to pay for such content. Detailed information about Bill C-11 is available online at

Entrepreneurs that take their time and abilities to create for the digital economy should be protected from those that would exploit their work without consent or compensation.

Colin Mayes is the MP for Okanagan-Shuswap.