University of Toronto Students Hopeful That Copyright Decision Will Halt Unfair Fees

TORONTO, July 20, 2012 /CNW/ - Students at the University of Toronto are pleased that the Supreme Court of Canada has confirmed that a fee they are being charged to access copyrighted materials tramples upon their rights under copyright law. University of Toronto students are being forced to pay a $27.50 fee to Access Copyright to use copyrighted material even though copyright law guarantees students the right to access copyrighted works for educational purposes, without the fee. Access Copyright is an organization that has been criticized by students and professors for forcing students to pay something they already have. The University of Toronto is one of a minority of Canadian post-secondary institutions who have recently signed agreements with Access Copyright.

"The Supreme Court decision against Access Copyright gives students hope that the collection of these fees will be halted," said Munib Sajjad, Vice-President University Affairs of the University of Toronto Students' Union.  "Students' access to necessary material should not be burdened by unfair, unnecessary fees for Access Copyright."

The University of Toronto announced their decision to sign on to an agreement with Access Copyright in January 2012. Since then, a growing number of institutions have publicly announced that they would not be entering into an agreement with Access Copyright. The University of British Columbia, York University, Queens University, Carleton University, and the University of Windsor are among the growing number of institutions who have refused to force students to pay unfair fees to Access Copyright.

"Students rely on access to content for the purposes of education," said Sajjad. "The Copyright Act allows students to access content for educational purposes - there should be no fee. Access Copyright is scamming students. We hope the University of Toronto joins its peers across the country and reconsiders its agreement with Access Copyright."

The University of Toronto Students' Union represents more than 45,000 full-time undergraduate students at the University of Toronto.

SOURCE University of Toronto Students' Union

For further information:

Shaun Shepherd, President, University of Toronto Students' Union
416-556-2405 cell or 416-978-4911 ext. 223
Munib Sajjad, Vice President University Affairs, University of Toronto Students' Union
416-978-4911 ext. 230

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