Authors Alliance recently joined a coalition of research, science, and education organizations that called on the Association of Scientific, Technical and Medical Publishers (STM) to withdraw a set of New Model Licenses for purportedly “open access” publishing. Beyond the flaws in those Model Licenses, the STM move raises some potentially serious antitrust issues. In other words, by adopting these set of model licenses and recommending that their members adopt them, STM and its member publishers might have broken the law. This is problematic for authors who write to be read, and who deserve a competitive publishing environment that allows them …

STM’s “Open Access” Licenses: Extend, Embrace, and Extinguish Read more »

The Competition Bureau announced today that it has signed a consent decree with the four major book publishers, which is expected to lower the price of ebooks in Canada. According to the Bureau’s media release, the agreement between the Bureau and Hachette Book Group, HarperCollins, Macmillan, and Simon & Schuster follows an 18-month investigation into the ebook industry in Canada.

Earlier this week the Federal Court of Appeal overturned a decision of the Competition Tribunal that had dismissed the Commissioner of Competition’s case against the Toronto Real Estate Board last year. The case involves an Application made by the Commissioner of Competition pursuant to section 79 of the Competition Act (dealing with ‘Abuse of Dominant Position’) for orders prohibiting the Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) from engaging in a practice of anti-competitive acts in the Greater Toronto Area and requiring TREB to take steps which will overcome the effects of that practice.

Conventional wisdom holds that the European Union has opted to apply its competition law to the exercise of intellectual property rights to a much greater extent than has the United States. In a new article, published in Vol. 79(1) of the Antitrust Law Journal, Paul-Erik Veel and I argue that, at least in the context of copyright protection, this conventional wisdom is false.

On May 15, 2012 the University of British Columbia announced that it would not sign a license agreement with Access Copyright, and immediately was inducted into Canada’s Fair Dealing Hall of Fame. “We believe we are taking the bolder, more principled and sustainable option, which best serves the fundamental and long-term interests of our academic community”, said David H. Farrar, Provost and Vice President Academic (Vancouver) and Doug Owram, Deputy Vice Chancellor and Principal (Okanagan). Yes, they did.