Yesterday, McGill’s Centre for Intellectual Property Policy and I filed a joint Intervener Factum in the CBC v SODRAC case before the Supreme Court of Canada. The Court granted us leave to intervene with respect to the question of whether tariffs that the Copyright Board approved can be imposed on users. In the decision below, the Federal Court of Appeal (“FCA”) held that a collective management organization (“CMO”) can ask the Board to approve a licensing scheme and then impose it on users. If correct, such users then have no choice other than to deal with the CMO, and must, as …

Why Tariffs Aren’t Mandatory: Now the Factum Read more »

For years Hollywood has waged war on the open internet. It may have taken freedom of expression for granted and believed that only the open internet puts it at risk. Maybe it should begin rethinking its priorities. It if does, it may discover the open internet protects it as much as, and probably more, than stronger copyright law would ever do.

Last week reports emerged that the Government is considering a new copyright exception for political advertising. The reports suggested that the exception would permit the use of news content by political parties without authorization. While most of the media coverage of this story focused on the copyright issue and the phenomenon of attack ads, documents that Sun Media obtained from the CBC (under an Access to Information request) reveal an even more interesting and more important story, both politically and legally. These documents, offering a rare glimpse behind the scenes of Canada’s major media organization, reveal a picture of a …

Attack Ads, Copyright, and Collusion: Have Canada’s Major Broadcasters Violated the Competition Act? Read more »

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 »

On May 29, 2014 the Quill & Quire published an article with the sensational title “Why the loss of Access Copyright royalties could be devastating for educational publishers”, which advances the thesis and leads the reader to the supposedly inescapable conclusion that the decision of many educational institutions to sever their ties with Access Copyright has already wreaked havoc with publishers and will continue to be. This is a second of a series of posts in which why these thesis and conclusions do not hold up to scrutiny.