Canada Passes Bill C-11: Ushers In New Age of Copyright Reform

OTTAWA, ON, July 3 – On June 29, the final stage of the process was complete as the Senate approved Bill C-11, The Copyright Modernization Act.  The road has been a lengthy one, involving thousands of consultations over the course of seven years.  Canada has long lagged behind most industrial countries with regard to WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization) standards with copyright legislation that hadn’t been updated since 1997.

Bill C-11 ensures that Canada is brought in line with international treaties. Changes from the old copyright legislation include: the extension of fair dealing provisions to encompass education, parody and satire use; time shifting for legally obtained broadcast media, and; reproducing copyrighted work for education purposes.  Additionally, if notified by copyright holders, internet service providers will be required to notify their users if and when they may be infringing on copyrighted material.  Consequences for infringement will be more severe: individuals will be held accountable for damages from $500 to $20,000 for commercial use, while non-commercial use damages will range from $100 to $5,000.  The legislation will be reviewed every five years.

Said IATSE International President Matthew D. Loeb,  “The legislation isn’t perfect, but it’s a major step forward in terms of job protection and creation in our industry.  The IATSE has been a fervent supporter of stronger copyright legislation and we are pleased that the Canadian government has persisted in seeing that it gets implemented. Thanks should also go to the hundreds of IATSE members who participated in our email lobbying campaigns to push for the protection of the industry through stronger copyright legislation.”

English (Canada)