Students disappointed with Access Copyright attack on fair dealing

OTTAWA, April 10, 2013 /CNW/ - Students are disappointed to learn that Access Copyright is taking legal action against York University for opting out of Access Copyright licensing agreements.

"Access Copyright's desperate attempt to wrangle public institutions into its obsolete licensing agreements ignores legislative changes and court decisions clarifying fair dealing and copyright in Canada," said Adam Awad, National Chairperson of the Canadian Federation of Students. "Several colleges and universities have opted for modern copyright policies that rely on fair dealing, open access publishing, and in-house licensing rather than Access Copyright's archaic models."

In April 2012, Access Copyright and the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC) established a model licensing agreement regarding the use of copyrighted materials on campuses. Students, staff and faculty raised concerns with the model agreement which imposed new fees on students, threatened access to educational material and raised privacy concerns.

The enactment of Bill C-11, the Copyright Modernization Act, and recent Supreme Court decisions have given the post-secondary education community more flexibility in exercising fair dealing. In addition to York University, 18 universities across the country opted out of the Access Copyright license last year.

"Students supported York University's decision to reject Access Copyright's licensing agreement in favour of addressing copyright licensing internally," said Alastair Woods, Vice-President Campaigns of the York Federation of Students. "It's concerning that Access Copyright is using needless litigation to squeeze money out of public institutions."

The Canadian Federation of Students is Canada's largest student organisation, uniting more than one-half million students in all ten provinces. The Canadian Federation of Students and its predecessor organisations have represented students in Canada since 1927.

SOURCE: Canadian Federation of Students - Ontario

For further information:

or to arrange an interview, please contact: 

Adam Awad, National Chairperson, 613-232-7294, chair@cfs-fcee.ca