ARCHIVED — Amos Hayes
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COPYRIGHT REFORM PROCESS
SUBMISSIONS RECEIVED REGARDING THE CONSULTATION PAPERS
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Submission from Amos Hayes received on September 12, 2001 via e-mail
Subject: Comment on digital copyright future in Canada
Thank you for the opportunity to have my say.
We have certain rights and capabilities with non-digital media. I can purchase a book anonymously and once I have bought it, I can do what I like with it short of distributing copies of it. I can lend it to friends, mark it up, use reasonable excerpts for my own purposes (be they creative, academic, etc) and sell it when I am done with it.
Likewise, audio, video, and software media may also be purchased without identification, used as the "owner" sees fit (short of distributing copies or charging for performances) and the contents may be transfered to new and potentially different media for safekeeping or for use in different locations (car, work, computer, cottage) by the legitamate owner. I can also copy small pieces of the media to use in other works e.g. artistic projects, home videos, new works, parodies, etc and/or lend a movie to a friend to watch. Provided I have no copies in my possesion following the sale or gift, I may also transfer ownership anaonymously to another person.
Libraries must deal with all forms of media and likely perform most of the above actions in the course of lending and preserving their collection.
The technical controls that the industry seeks to wrap around their content are not yet sophisticated enough to preserve those abilities. Companies that seek to lock down digital media must provide for fair use, first sale, and other non-spoken rights such as anonymous procurement before they introduce new formats that would currently restrict our rights under copyright laws.
Regardless of the capabilities of pretection schemes, to restrict people's rights to learn about, disect, and speak about how things in our world work is a very dangerous step to take. I don't think we, as a nation that approches issues of censorship and free speach very seriously, should start treading down the path of persecuting people who reveal things that corporations are unhappy about. Distributing copyrighted material? We accept that that's not allowed. Defeating a content control system (or helping others to defeat it) in order to allow people to do things they are permitted to do under existing laws? No. Individual rights should take precedence over corporate rights to make money.
I welcome any comments on what I have written or contact from anyone also interested in this issue. I am also prepared to explain my feelings and thoughts in more detail if asked.
I hope the committee making recommendations will take individual concerns seriously. We should not let technology difficulties change our rights. Wait and let the technology catch up to us.
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