The OER Knowledge Cloud makes use of cookies. By continuing, you consent to this use. More information.
Coming to terms with copyright
Lametti, David

Published2005
PeriodicalChapter 17, Pages 480-516
PublisherIn the Public Interest: The Future of Canadian Copyright Law
EditorGeist, Michael
CountryCanada, North America

ABSTRACT
It is time to begin re-thinking systematically the larger issue of copyright terms (preferably in the context of a larger systematic re-thinking of copyright). With some exceptions, the extent to which the copyright term is taken as sacrosanct is surprising. In my view, we need to not only shorten the term of copyright generally, but also to vary the terms of copyright as between different kinds of works according to the context of the right and the resource protected by copyright. Finally, we might consider strengthening these proposals with a registration requirement, especially for longer terms, putting some of the onus on creators themselves of identifying and protecting works of ongoing value.

What this article provides is a conceptual and philosophical structure, albeit skeletal, for copyright reform generally and for the reform of copyright terms in particular. The argument herein is not grounded in the particular context of term extension debates in the US, nor based on free speech considerations, which while important can lose their persuasive force in the face of property rights talk. It is also not grounded on technologically-driven imperatives. Rather, the argument is grounded on the general concepts of property and of copyright, and in the theoretical justifications for and history of copyright. I am of the mind that we need to tie the specific reforms back to a more general understanding of copyright. In this sense we must look back critically in order to re-assess how to move forward. Such a re-calibration would bring copyright protection back into line with its core justifications and history, balancing the rights of creators with the interests of maintaining a robust public domain. Perhaps ironically, addressing the term of copyright protection would also go a long way to solving some of the problems being created by new technologies respecting access for users and balancing the rights of creators and users (for example, technological protection measures, digital rights management). Such measures are weakening, if not completely obliterating the interests of users. That is, shorter terms of copyright rights might be seen as a counterbalance to technological advances that have served to make rights more absolute than they have been historically: the trade-off is a much shorter term for a stronger right vis-à-vis users.

Of course, one has to be realistic in the sense that given the structure of international copyright, and US and EU preponderance in IP policy matters, that this situation will not change overnight and certainly not in this round of Canadian reform. However, there are dissident voices around the world and especially in the US, and this is a time to begin thinking in Canada about copyright terms in a more coherent manner. It is my hope that Canada will become a leader in this necessary and I think, inevitable, discussion. What follows is an attempt to help frame that discussion, and provide some of the theoretical underpinnings from which that discussion can proceed.

Related Articles

Economic impacts of the Canadian educational sector's fair dealing guidelines

With due respect to PricewaterhouseCoopers

Reviewing copyright? Check the history

Productivity commission: Tales of the widespread demise of Canadian publishers are just that

Keywords Canadian copyright · copyright · fair dealing

Published atToronto, Irwin Law
RefereedDoes not apply
URLhttps://ssrn.com/abstract=1758903
Export optionsBibTex · EndNote · Tagged XML · Google Scholar



AVAILABLE FILES
SSRN-id1758903.pdf · 563.6KB6 downloads



Viewed by 20 distinct readers




CLOUD COMMUNITY REVIEWS

The evaluations below represent the judgements of our readers and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Cloud editors.

Click a star to be the first to rate this document


POST A COMMENT
SIMILAR RECORDS

Canada's 'Orphan Works' regime: Unlocatable owners and the Copyright Board
DeBeer, Jeremy F.; Bouchard, Mario
This article analyses Canada’s approach to the problem of unlocateable copyright owners, more commonly called the problem of orphan works. Section 77 of the Copyright Act empowers the Copyright Board of Canada to ...
Match: copyright; Canada; North America

Access Copyright: 2017 annual report
Access Copyright
Annual report contains the President and CEO's report, the "York University Decision", legal updates, innovation updates and the financial report.
Match: copyright; Canada; North America

Reviewing copyright? Check the history
Nair, Meera
As MPs begin their review of the Copyright Act, they must look objectively at what has transpired over the last few years in this policy area. Related Articles
Match: fair dealing; Canada; North America

Education ministers’ policy statement on fair dealing
CMEC Copyright Consortium
The Statement underlines the provincial and territorial education ministers' support for teachers' and students' use of the fair dealing provision in the Copyright Act for classroom learning. The consortium is composed ...
Match: copyright; fair dealing

Awareness on Copyright among Students
Padil, Hazlina Mohd; Azmi, Amylia Fuziana; Ahmad, Nor Laila; Shariffuddin, Norashikin; et al.
Copyright refers to the rights of the authors over their literary and artistic works. This legal term protects the owner of their copyrighted work from being infringed by others. Infringement happens when the work of ...
Match: copyright; fair dealing

Economic impacts of the Canadian educational sector's fair dealing guidelines
Executive Summary PwC has assessed the actual and expected market impacts of the implementation of the Fair Dealing Guidelines (also referred to as “Guidelines”) adopted in 2012 by the Council of ...
Match: copyright; Canada

Productivity commission: Tales of the widespread demise of Canadian publishers are just that
Katz, Ariel
Related Articles Coming to terms with copyright
Match: copyright; Canada

Open educational resources: Discussion paper March 2019
CAUT
This document provides an overview of the main issues related to the use and creation of Open Educational Resources (OER) by CAUT members. It also provides suggestions for implementation, a bibliography for further ...
Match: copyright; Canada; North America

New issues for OERs
Downes, Stephen
This is based on my contribution to the new Creative Commons 'Education Platform' discussion of issues related to open educational resources (OERs). This is the next step following the development of a set of principles ...
Match: copyright; Canada; North America

With due respect to PricewaterhouseCoopers
Nair, Meera
Howard Knopf (a prominent intellectual property lawyer and longstanding advocate for maintaining the limits upon copyright as prescribed by law) has drawn our attention to a new study commissioned by Access Copyright ...
Match: copyright; Canada; North America