Applauding Copyright Bill's Introduction...



    TORONTO, June 12 /CNW/ - The members of the Canadian Publishers' Council
welcome the long-awaited copyright reform bill that will modernize Canada's
Copyright Act. It will enable Canada to ratify the crucial WIPO digital
treaties and buttress the rights of copyright creators and producers in a
digital world. Our knowledge-based economy will reap benefits from strong
copyright legislation while serving Canadians well with access to an
ever-increasing repertoire of digital works.
    "Copyright is publishing's foundation. Canada's publishing sector will
now have the confidence to invest in a more sustainable, robust and
competitive digital environment," said Jacqueline Hushion, Executive Director
of the Council.
    Canada has 15,000+ full-time writers. Royalties earned from the sale of
their works are their major source of income. Canadian authors have won every
significant literary award in the world and exports of their works have grown
10% per annum in recent analog years; their digital opportunities will be
greatly enhanced.
    "Like every writer, I depend upon words as my inspiration and my bread
and butter. And like every Canadian writer, I'm relieved that Parliament is
addressing the issue of copyright reform in the twenty-first century. Since
our livelihood depends on it, we'll follow this Bill with avid interest," said
Dennis Lee, renowned and poetic author of classic children's books including
Alligator Pie, and Fraggle Rock writer.
    "Ratification of the WIPO treaties will enable copyright owners to trade
internationally with confidence in the protection of their digital rights and
their right of recourse against any who would harvest and pirate copyrighted
works," noted Catherine Campbell, LL.B., Intellectual Property Consultant.
Hushion concluded, "We have not yet analyzed the Bill but we are grateful that
the Government kept its promise to introduce this legislation. We trust that
every organization with a stake in its passage will participate in the
upcoming Parliamentary process and debate. Canadian consumers, creators and
producers will all benefit."

    The Canadian Publishers' Council was founded in 1910. It represents the
interests of companies that publish books, electronic works, online databases,
audiobooks, interactive websites and other media for the retail and library
markets, elementary/secondary schools, colleges/universities and the
professional and reference marketplace. Member publishers also act as
exclusive distributors for international titles from around the globe. Members
employ nearly 3000 Canadians and account for approximately three-quarters of
Canada's annual domestic sales of English-language Canadian originated and
imported works. The Council is dedicated to a strong publishing industry and
to the advancement of Canada's copyright regime.



    
                         Voices of Canadian Authors

    "It is a measure of a civilized society that artists' creations be
protected."

        Terry Fallis, winner, 2008 Stephen Leacock Memorial Medal for Humour
           for his first book, The Best Laid Plans, a satirical novel podcast
           chapter by chapter
        ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    "Copyright reform legislation is essential to the survival of the Canadian
artist in an increasingly complex, unregulated market. As an issue, legal
protection for what we have created is growing more urgent by the day."

        Charles Foran, multi award-winning novelist and non-fiction
           writer / journalist, official biographer of Mordecai Richler
        ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    "I strongly support efforts to reform Canadian copyright. We have a rich
cultural heritage in this country and the producers of this wealth - writers,
musicians and filmmakers - deserve at least the same level of protection and
compensation afforded to artists in the U.S. and the U.K. and other
progressive nations."

        Susan Juby, winner of 10 prestigious awards and a further
           6 nominations for her writing for young adults/teens
        ---------------------------------------------------------------------
    "Like every writer, I depend on words as my inspiration and my bread and
butter. And like every Canadian writer, I'm relieved that Parliament is
addressing the issue of copyright reform in the twenty-first century. Since
our livelihood depends on it, we'll follow this Bill with avid interest."

        Dennis Lee, poetic author of a "steady diet" of classic children's
           books (including Alligator Pie), a Fraggle Rock writer and author
           of a G.G.-winning political collection
        ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    "In a time when culture and technology are both changing as fast as they
are today, it is not always a bad thing if the law lags a little, to give us
time to evaluate the wisest response. But we've had time now in the area of
copyright law, and I am pleased and appreciative that Canada is taking legal
steps to bring itself in line with international thinking that honours and
recognizes the artist's right to control of his or her own creation. Effective
copyright law is directly connected to flourishing art."

        Guy Gavriel Kay, student assistant to Christopher Tolkien for editing
           of The Silmarillion, becomes Canada's fantasy fiction star and, as
           a trained Barrister, wrote for CBC's The Scales of Justice
        ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    "Without copyright protection, artists will continue to see others profit
from their work while they learn to be grateful for the 'exposure'."

        Greg Hollingshead, 5 dozen+ stories and essays in anthologies and
           magazines in 3 countries, 3 novels garnering 8 nominations and
           9 more awards and prizes; directs the writing programs at the
           Banff Centre
        ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    "Writers in this country have been looking to government to address
digital copyright issues for many years. While we've been waiting for reform
of the Copyright Act, Canada's professional cultural workers have seen a
steady erosion of their rights and livelihoods.
    Chances are I won't agree with everything in the bill, but I congratulate
this government for doing the work to bring it to Parliament. This discussion
needs to happen in the country's highest chambers, and Canada's legislators
need to do the work to understand copyright in all its subtlety and
complexity. I look forward to a vigorous debate.
    I'm very hopeful that the House, in its wisdom, can find a balance that
suits creators, publishers, and the broader public interest."

        John Degen, Executive Director, Professional Writers' Association of
           Canada, copyright advocate, short-listed for the 2007
           Amazon.ca/Books in Canada First Novel Award
        ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    "The notion that information must be free doesn't fit the situation of
writers who make a livelihood by selling their stories. We don't expect
farmers who grow watermelons to give their fruit away for free, so why should
we expect that of writers?
    The bill also presents a good opportunity for discussion on an issue few
of us really understand. How many know, for instance, that many big Internet
servers claim they own the emails and websites on their systems? Is this fair?
I hope the new bill will bring more clarity and fairness on this issue."

        Susan Swan, outgoing Chair of The Writers' Union of Canada, author of
           books for children, young adults and adults published in
           16 countries, essayist, journalist, celebrated York University
           Humanities professor, international speaker, and winner of the
           Robarts Millennial Scholar prize
        ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    Contact:  Jackie Hushion, (416) 322-7011, extension 222, who will be
              pleased to refer media to all of the authors participating in
              this release
    





For further information:

For further information: or to contact Canadian authors contributing to
this release, call: Jacqueline Hushion, (416) 671-4435 (mobile) or (416)
322-7011, x 222 (office)

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