Retail Council of Canada welcomes introduction of Copyright Modernization Act

Industry commends Government for rejecting calls to extend blank media levy

OTTAWA, June 3 /CNW/ - Retail Council of Canada (RCC) is encouraged by the proposed Copyright Act amendments in Bill C-32 and believes they are a positive step towards modernizing Canada's copyright laws. The draft legislation is a positive attempt to balance the interests of consumers who purchase copyrighted material and the creators of that material.

"Canadian retailers are encouraged that the anti-competitive blank media levy will not be extended under the proposed changes. Indeed, retailers believe the levy should be repealed altogether," said Terrance Oakey, Vice-President, Federal Government Relations, RCC.

RCC is also pleased to see that the Government has taken steps towards providing an explicit exception recognizing that private copying for archival or backup purposes, and for format shifting purposes by individuals of legitimately acquired copies of works or sound recordings and movies is legal.

Retailers support the limited and legitimate use of technological protection measures as long as it does not prevent consumers from exercising their users' rights to engage in fair dealing, as well as private copying, archival backup and time and format shifting for private purposes and for access to public domain material.

"Retailers call on the creators of content to continue to develop innovative ways to provide greater flexibility to those that legally purchase copyrighted material. Creating locks for legally purchased material and punishing consumers with excessive fines is counterproductive as it will provide an incentive for consumers to turn to black markets where these locks may not exist," said Mr. Oakey.

RCC members agree that some parts of the legislation unfairly restrict consumer freedom and choice and need to be revised before being passed by Parliament.

"Parallel imports - which by definition involve legitimate goods - should clearly be permitted under the new Copyright Act so that Canadian consumers can benefit from world prices and Canadian retailers can remain competitive. Copyright should not become a tool of anti-competitive misuse or international trade control," said Mr. Oakey.

RCC is also encouraged by the Ministers' statements that the Government is open to amendments and we look forward to participating in a thorough Parliamentary review process.

About Retail Council of Canada

Retail Council of Canada (RCC) has been the Voice of Retail in Canada since 1963. We speak for an industry that touches the daily lives of Canadians in every corner of the country - by providing jobs, career opportunities, and by investing in the communities we serve. RCC is a not-for-profit, industry-funded association representing more than 40,000 store fronts of all retail formats across Canada, including department, specialty, discount, and independent stores, and online merchants. RCC is a strong advocate for retailing in Canada and works with all levels of government and other stakeholders to support employment growth and career opportunities in retail, to promote and sustain retail investments in communities from coast-to-coast, and to enhance consumer choice and industry competitiveness. RCC also provides its members with a full range of services and programs including education and training, benchmarking and best practices, networking, advocacy, and industry information.

SOURCE Retail Council of Canada

For further information: For further information: Terrance Oakey, Vice President, Federal Government Relations, Retail Council of Canada at (613) 755-4442 or toakey@retailcouncil.org


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