The Copyright Board of Canada: A Regulator Lacking a Theory of Regulation

emblemI appeared today before the Senate Committee on Banking, Trade and Commerce, in the course of its study of the operation and practices of the Copyright Board of Canada. Here is my testimony: Read more ›

Posted in Antitrust / Competition Law, Blog, Copyright, Copyright Collectives, Stationers

Digital Exhaustion: North American Observations

The Castaway, 1908 Kindle Edition

The Castaway, 1908 Kindle Edition

My book chapter Digital Exhaustion: North American Observations has been published in the Research Handbook on Electronic Commerce Law, edited by John A. Rothchild. Read more ›

Posted in Blog, Copyright, My Research, Stationers

Fair Dealing: Have We Had Fair Use All Along? (HKU Public Lecture in IP)

HKU lawtec logo

I am excited and honoured to give the Hong Kong University Public Lecture in IP next Wednesday, Nov 9, 2016. The title of my lecture is “Fair Dealing: Have We Had Fair Use All Along?”

The lecture is based on this book chapter.

Abstract:
Conventional wisdom holds that while the fair use doctrine in the United States is omnipresent and flexible, fair dealing, its Commonwealth cousin is more rigid and can only apply to the specifically enumerated statutory purposes. Fair use, on this view, is an American invention—foreign to the copyright traditions of the rest of the common law world.
Reflecting on the recent Canadian experience, and exploring its relevance to Hong Kong, Professor Katz will recount the history of fair use and fair dealing. He will argue that that the distinction between a US-style open-ended fair use and fair dealing is a myth that can be laid to rest. Rather than being a foreign legal implant, embracing an open-ended fair dealing is not only possible under the current legislation, but also provides the most internally, historically, and constitutionally coherent only interpretation of the Canadian Copyright Act.

Date/Time: November 9, 2016 (Wed) from 1pm – 2pm
Location: Academic Conference Room, 11/F Cheng Yu Tung Tower, HKU

More details here.

Posted in Blog, Copyright, Copyright Collectives

CETA could put Canada between a rock and constitutional hard places

First published in the Globe and Mail on Oct 25, 2016

While Wallonia’s opposition to the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement has received considerable attention, a recent decision of the German Federal Constitutional Court shows that CETA faces more fundamental hurdles than most Canadian and European leaders are willing to acknowledge.

On Oct. 13, the constitutional court declined to issue a preliminary injunction prohibiting the German government from signing CETA. While it allowed Germany to sign, a careful reading of the decision reveals that it gave CETA a very qualified green light and contains several important lessons for Canada. Read more ›

Posted in Blog, Other

SODRAC v. Quebec Artists?

Pier-Luk Bouthillier is a Montreal graphic designer. He had previously worked as an Art Director for the cultural weekly “ICI Montreal”, and in 2007, he launched his first in a series of environmentally-themed t-shirts. You can see his t-shirts on his website (as well as some ‘Fleur de lys’ boxer briefs).

One of Mr. Bouthillier’s shirts, J’aime Montréal, features a few stylized drawings of various Montreal landmarks, organized around the slogan J’♥ Montréal. According to the CBC, this got Mr. Bouthillier in some legal trouble. Read more ›

Posted in Blog, Copyright, Copyright Collectives
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