Monday, February 20, 2006

Oda's comments on copyright reform

See today's Globe & Mail article, in which the new Heritage Minister, Bev Oda, comments on copyright reform.

The article says:
As a veteran educator -- Oda spent six years teaching theatre arts and art to children in Mississauga, Ont. -- she also has some caveats about the last government's proposed copyright legislation. "Last session, our party stood up and said we'd like to look at digital access for learning materials. So we're still looking at copyright legislation overall." Those who had hoped for the new government to automatically push through the Liberals' bill should not hold their breath.

On June 29 2005 Bev Oda, as Heritage Critic, made the following comment which I think adds light to her quote in the G&M article:

"Ms. Bev Oda (Durham, CPC): Mr. Speaker, Canada has a world class Internet infrastructure in our schools but the heritage minister's new copyright legislation makes it restrictive, onerous and possibly more costly for schools, teachers and students to download on-line educational material.
This legislation will make routine classroom activities illegal. Why do the government and the minister want to make our students and teachers pay more for materials they are using now or make them criminals under a new copyright law?"

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Woah Sweden!

A new political party has been born in Sweden: The Pirate Party, which aims to abolish copyright and patent law:

The Guardian: Pirates pursue a political point

Wednesday, February 8, 2006

Fee for service?

Debates are underway on Capitol Hill about whether telecom companies who provide Internet service should be allowed to charge extra fees to internet companies to guarantee specific levels of service (today's Financial Times: Telecoms and internet groups clash on charges, p. 6).

Opponents to the fees say that telecoms will use the fees to hinder access to certain Internet services such as Voice-Over-IP services that compete with their own offerings - a claim the telecoms deny.

Opponents also say that these types of fees will make it more difficult for newer companies to reach an audience.

I know that I want an Internet on which it is as easy as possible to access all the little start-ups - not one where start-ups have to pay to reach me. And I don't want to pay extra to be able to reach certain services like VoIP. I want an Internet that allows me to access any service I want - I don't want to have to pay extra to access this one or that one.

A good article on this topic can be found on the BBC web site.

Monday, February 6, 2006

New ministers of Heritage and Industry

The main departments involved with copyright reform are Industry and Heritage.
Wikipedia is quick on the uptake with an article on Bev Oda, the new Conservative Heritage minister. She has a history in broadcasting, was once the commissioner of the CRTC, and has been the Heritage critic.

Maxime Bernier, the new Industry minister, is a lawyer, businessman, and member of the The Montreal Economic Institute.
Bernier supports the idea of a flat-tax instead of taxes tiered for income.