Canadian Internet users could face draconian restrictions as result of Pacific trade


mentalfloss
#1
Canadian Internet users could face draconian restrictions as result of Pacific trade

A coalition of Internet advocates launched a campaign Wednesday against Canada’s participation in closed-door trade talks that could force Canada to rewrite its laws and impose draconian restrictions on Canadian Internet users.

The coalition, which includes Vancouver’s OpenMedia.ca (external - login to view), is calling on the Canadian government to lift the veil of secrecy surrounding negotiations in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement and to defend Canada’s sovereignty over Internet laws in this country.

“You could end up getting fined just for clicking on the wrong link,” said Steve Anderson, founder of OpenMedia.ca, which has been joined by the Electronic Frontier Foundation, (external - login to view) the US digital rights group Public Knowledge (external - login to view), the Council of Canadians (external - login to view), the global consumer advocacy group SumOfUs.org (external - login to view), software company Tucows, (external - login to view) Chilean public interest group ONG Derechos Digitales (external - login to view) and the Washington, DC-based watchdog group Public Citizen. (external - login to view) “Your Internet access could be terminated; your own content could be removed from the web and you may not have access to the kind of online material you have now.

“I think if this goes through a lot of people will be looking over their shoulder and they’ll be very nervous about what they click on. If you click and end up downloading something that is covered by copyright, you could be dragged into court.”

Canada was a late entry into the TPP negotiations, only invited to join last week by US President Barack Obama .The cost of its entry included what Michael Geist (external - login to view), Canada Research Chair in Internet and e-commerce law at the University of Ottawa, describes as “second-tier status,” (external - login to view) with Canada bound by terms already agreed to among the TPP partners and with no veto authority in future decisions.

Geist said the agreement could force Canada to make changes to its intellectual property laws in the wake of Bill C-11 (external - login to view), the copyright act which was just passed in the House of Commons.

“As it stands now in the draft that has been leaked (external - login to view) and the goals of the United States, there is no question it would require a number of changes to the legislation Canada has just now enacted and the government has spent the better part of two years claiming it strikes the right balance,” said Geist.

Geist said Canada’s entry into the agreement leaves Canadians liable for conditions they know nothing about.

“The conditions of entry here were really problematic,” he said. “…Just by entering into discussions we have effectively agreed to a number of conditions the government hasn’t even told us about.”

Geist said the agreement could impose restrictions that are much more draconian than Canada’s current legislation. Among the changes indicated by the leaked document, the imposition of statutory damages would no longer distinguish between commercial copyright infringement and non-commercial, putting ordinary Canadians at risk of much higher damages.

“It means the liability risks would increase absolutely,” said Geist.

The leaked agreement also extends copyright term from its current 50 years after the death of an author of literary and artistic work to 70 years, the term used by the US and some other countries.

“The effect, if they were to extend the term in Canada would be to literally lock down the pubic domain in Canada for the next 20 years,” said Geist, adding a number of works, from Marshall McLuhan to Glenn Gould are scheduled to come into the public domain in the next 20 years. “Public domain would be frozen.”

Anderson said Canada’s compliance with an agreement that is essentially driven by a strong entertainment industry lobby could limit the growth of this country’s digital economy and create a culture of fear.

“This creates a much more paranoid atmosphere around the Internet,” he said.

Geist said since Canada already has trading agreements with four of the 10 participants in the TPP, there is little economic advantage to be gained by joining the TPP.

“We already have agreements with four of the TPP members, the US, Mexico, Peru and Chile,” he said.

The remaining countries, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam and Brunei, represent well under one per cent of Canadian exports.

“It is hard to envision it is worth surrendering so much and making so many concessions on the basis of those six countries, it makes no sense,” said Geist.

Instead, Geist suggested Canada is pursuing the negotiations as as way of using a back door approach to making major domestic legislative reforms that would be politically risky for the Canadian government in the face of considerable opposition among Canadians.

Details of the coalition’s campaign can be found at StoptheTrap.net. (external - login to view)

Canadians Internet users could face draconian restrictions as result of Pacific trade talks | Vancouver Sun (external - login to view)
 
dumpthemonarchy
Free Thinker
+1
#2
Asian countries have difficulties with democracy and freedom, so this may be a worry.
 
TenPenny
+1
#3
Too many of these multilateral trade deals require changes in other laws, which essentially erode our sovereignty. We should tell the TPP to go pound sand.
 
taxslave
No Party Affiliation
+1
#4
Finest bunch of fear mongering I have seen in a long time. Got any proof of any of your accusations? Come back when would gets changed to will.
 
TenPenny
#5
So your argument is that we should never oppose anything until it's already been changed in law?
 
petros
#6
Which laws are being rewritten?
 
taxslave
No Party Affiliation
+1
#7
Quote: Originally Posted by TenPennyView Post

So your argument is that we should never oppose anything until it's already been changed in law?

Nope. I just couldn't find anything in the article that said absolutely that any specific law WILL be changed in order to join the group. Might and could are speculation, just like the anti everything crowd claiming that a pipeline to the west coast might destroy the coast line there fore it cannot be built. Pure speculation.
 
dumpthemonarchy
Free Thinker
#8
Quote: Originally Posted by taxslaveView Post

Nope. I just couldn't find anything in the article that said absolutely that any specific law WILL be changed in order to join the group. Might and could are speculation, just like the anti everything crowd claiming that a pipeline to the west coast might destroy the coast line there fore it cannot be built. Pure speculation.

A trade deal is not a pipeline, it can be more because it can affect our laws and how we live. Politics reigns over economics and Asians know that better than us. Time for the feds to release drafts of the TPP and Euro trade deal they are working on. Referendums could be in order also.
 
Bar Sinister
No Party Affiliation
#9
If I remember correctly the courts have already ruled on this issue. Unless there is a reversal of that court decision Canada's internet will remain freer than that of the US.
 
taxslave
No Party Affiliation
#10
Interesting thing about lefties and international interference in Canadian affairs. For some reason the anti economic activity crowd feels that it is perfectly fine for special interest groups from all over the world to be able to intervene in environmental assessments of Canadian resource projects but cry like little babies when possibly maybe some day we might have to change a few laws to join an important international trade group.

Quote: Originally Posted by dumpthemonarchyView Post

A trade deal is not a pipeline, it can be more because it can affect our laws and how we live. Politics reigns over economics and Asians know that better than us. Time for the feds to release drafts of the TPP and Euro trade deal they are working on. Referendums could be in order also.

Releasing drafts would be stupid unless your goal is to destroy the process. We must wait for a final bargaining position. Then see what we can accept or not. Perhaps we will want to halt the entire process at that point. Who knows?
 
Niflmir
Free Thinker
+2
#11  Top Rated Post
Quote: Originally Posted by mentalflossView Post

“You could end up getting fined just for clicking on the wrong link,” said Steve Anderson,

Like this totally safe wikipedia link: Virgin Killer - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (external - login to view)

Quote: Originally Posted by taxslaveView Post

Releasing drafts would be stupid unless your goal is to destroy the process. We must wait for a final bargaining position. Then see what we can accept or not. Perhaps we will want to halt the entire process at that point. Who knows?

Yeah, releasing drafts definitely destroys legislative processes. That is why our parliament rightly holds its debates in secret.
 
Spade
Free Thinker
#12
Yes, secrecy is the hallmark of democracy. Even the police should be secret!
 
Liberalman
Free Thinker
#13
Quote: Originally Posted by mentalflossView Post

Canadian Internet users could face draconian restrictions as result of Pacific trade
A coalition of Internet advocates launched a campaign Wednesday against Canada’s participation in closed-door trade talks that could force Canada to rewrite its laws and impose draconian restrictions on Canadian Internet users.
The coalition, which includes Vancouver’s OpenMedia.ca, is calling on the Canadian government to lift the veil of secrecy surrounding negotiations in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement and to defend Canada’s sovereignty over Internet laws in this country.
“You could end up getting fined just for clicking on the wrong link,” said Steve Anderson, founder of OpenMedia.ca, which has been joined by the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the US digital rights group Public Knowledge, the Council of Canadians, the global consumer advocacy group SumOfUs.org, software company Tucows, Chilean public interest group

Quote has been trimmed, See full post: View Post
You can thank the downloaders of copyrighted stuff for this
 
coldstream
+1 / -1
#14
Harper is such a pathetic shill for the Global Investment Organism.. which will finally cost us our prosperity, our sovereignty and our liberty... with all the benefits being skimmed off by a trading and financial oligarchy of grotesque wealth based on usery and human exploitation.

It's the dawn of a slave economy that is already well established in the developing world and is moving relentlessly and maliciously into the first world.

In this case he goes cap in hand, like an unwanted tag along kid brother to Obama's ball game.
Our Prime Minister is an incompetent twit.
Last edited by coldstream; Jun 30th, 2012 at 01:04 PM..
 
L Gilbert
No Party Affiliation
+1
#15
Quote: Originally Posted by dumpthemonarchyView Post

Asian countries have difficulties with democracy and freedom........

And totally irrelevant to Canadian issues within Canada.

Quote: Originally Posted by coldstreamView Post

Harper is such a pathetic shill for the Global Investment Organism.. which will finally cost us our prosperity, our sovereignty and our liberty... with all the benefits being skimmed off by a trading and financial oligarchy of grotesque wealth based on usery and human exploitation.

It's the dawn of a slave economy that is already well established in the developing world and is moving relentlessly and maliciously into the first world.

In this case he goes cap in hand, like an unwanted tag along kid brother to Obama's ball game.
Our Prime Minister is an incompetent twit.

You forgot to mention that it's all homosexuals' fault.
 
taxslave
No Party Affiliation
#16
Quote: Originally Posted by NiflmirView Post

Like this totally safe wikipedia link: Virgin Killer - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (external - login to view)



Yeah, releasing drafts definitely destroys legislative processes. That is why our parliament rightly holds its debates in secret.

Doesn't destroy it but it can certainly slow things down. A draft does not necessarily come close to resembling the finished product so there is little point in letting everyone with an agenda poke holes in it or like MF hit hysteria mode because of some nutter theory.
 
Niflmir
Free Thinker
+2
#17
Quote: Originally Posted by taxslaveView Post

Doesn't destroy it but it can certainly slow things down. A draft does not necessarily come close to resembling the finished product so there is little point in letting everyone with an agenda poke holes in it or like MF hit hysteria mode because of some nutter theory.

I'm sorry, but you and I have very different feelings about what democracy means. To me, it is absolutely necessary that this debate takes place. Everyone with an agenda needs to poke holes in legislation; this is necessary because nobody knows for certain what is best in society and compromise is necessary.

The whole point of having drafts is to have public debate about how problems should be tackled. Government is not a Hobson's choice, a false dichotomy. Legislation is never take it or leave it. Waiting around for a final version of legislation and then voting to take it or leave it is not something that should happen in an open, free and democratic society.
 
dumpthemonarchy
Free Thinker
#18
Quote: Originally Posted by taxslaveView Post

Interesting thing about lefties and international interference in Canadian affairs. For some reason the anti economic activity crowd feels that it is perfectly fine for special interest groups from all over the world to be able to intervene in environmental assessments of Canadian resource projects but cry like little babies when possibly maybe some day we might have to change a few laws to join an important international trade group.


Releasing drafts would be stupid unless your goal is to destroy the process. We must wait for a final bargaining position. Then see what we can accept or not. Perhaps we will want to halt the entire process at that point. Who knows?

The public has to have an idea what they are getting into. The govt has to provide info on what is happening, there's no actual drafts released of course.

Quote: Originally Posted by L GilbertView Post

And totally irrelevant to Canadian issues within Canada.



What?!?!?! Trade deal change laws, NAFTA did it, the TPP will also. Corporations can now sue govts due to loss of perceived investments. That is what the USA demanded if Canada wanted a deal/
 
PoliticalNick
Free Thinker
#19
I don't care which laws might or will be changed. To me this is an issue of sovereignty, something we seem to be giving up in spades over the last decade or 2. We are in an awesome position globally right now with our resources and should be leveraging that to our full advantage, not letting others tell us what to do.
 
dumpthemonarchy
Free Thinker
#20
Quote: Originally Posted by PoliticalNickView Post

I don't care which laws might or will be changed. To me this is an issue of sovereignty, something we seem to be giving up in spades over the last decade or 2. We are in an awesome position globally right now with our resources and should be leveraging that to our full advantage, not letting others tell us what to do.

Changing laws is what trade deals are all about.

You are right we are in an awesome position right now in history, we have the resources the world needs. I read a while back that big oil is happy tomake a measly 5% rate of return in Canada. Why? Because what is the rate of return in Russia, Iraq, Venezuela? If the negatives because they like to confiscate your property and you get less than zilch on your investment. We top dog here folks.

Mulroney tooted Canada is "open for business" because during the Cold War things were a tad different. Now such a philosophy is hokey. We need to deal like we have most of the cards/resources, and we don't. We don't by not refining much of the bitumen Alberta wants to sell to Asia. Good high paying jobs are being shifted offshore. A long term loser strategy.
 
beaker
#21
Quote: Originally Posted by dumpthemonarchyView Post

Changing laws is what trade deals are all about.

You are right we are in an awesome position right now in history, we have the resources the world needs. I read a while back that big oil is happy tomake a measly 5% rate of return in Canada. Why? Because what is the rate of return in Russia, Iraq, Venezuela? If the negatives because they like to confiscate your property and you get less than zilch on your investment. We top dog here folks.

Mulroney tooted Canada is "open for business" because during the Cold War things were a tad different. Now such a philosophy is hokey. We need to deal like we have most of the cards/resources, and we don't. We don't by not refining much of the bitumen Alberta wants to sell to Asia. Good high paying jobs are being shifted offshore. A long term loser strategy.

I think that Mulroney tooted the open for business euphemism because of a false impression circulating that Canada was becoming too independant of international, read mostly American, corporate interest and investment. In reality of course we were only getting started on that better path. Most of the cards you are talking about now are held by pretty large and powerful oil companies from around the world. Largely because of Mulroneys surrendering our sovereignty and resources through the FTA.

But I agree we should be playing those cards that we have for all they are worth. Instead we seem to be rushing after that same open for business mantra that will leave us up the creek whille energy prices are rising quickly.
 
L Gilbert
No Party Affiliation
#22
There's higher profits in refining and other finished goods than there is in raw resources. Yet Canadians seem bent on selling raw resources to foreign concerns and also many companies that do refine and manufacture. Seems kind of dense to me.
 

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