Re: public performance rights

Oksana Dykyj (
Thu, 27 Mar 1997 14:43:00 +0000 (HELP)

A brief copyright update for Canadians:

Bill C-32 went through third reading in the House of Commons on Thursday,
March 20th and first reading in the Senate. Depending on what occurs in
Senate, the bill may die before the next election or it may be hurried through.

Karen Adams' Ottawa Update in The February issue of _Feliciter_ explains
some concerns related to libraries and educational institutions.

I have been carefully following the bill in its progression through the
various stages of being passed. As initially written last April, the bill
proposed a number of exceptions for libraries, educational institutions and
museums/archives. In terms of public performance of a video, the bill did
not provide a counterpart for the U.S. face-to-face teaching situation.(Of
course our Fair Dealing is not comparable to the U.S. Fair Use. It is more
restrictive and not an exception, rather it is a defense which may be raised
in an infringement suit.) The bill did however provide a public performance
exception for sound recordings and the public performance of a copyrighted
work by students in a classroom. (Work in this case is not a
cinematographic work) But, there was a provision that a public performance
(including video) if related to the purpose of the giving of an assignment,
test or examination, would not be an infringement. This was altered by the
Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage in December to exclude "assignment".

The whole process was highly controversial. The issues stemming from the
changes in December include paying collectives which amounts to not having
an exception in the first place. (If the exception only comes into effect
after a fee has been paid to a collective, it is not an exception is it?)

In any event we, Canadians, are having great difficulty in establishing a
balance between the interests of creators or copyright holders,( or the
middlepeople who represent the interests of creators) and the needs of the
users of copyrighted material. I'll stop here.

Oksana Dykyj Tel: 514-848-3443
Head, Visual Media Resources Fax: 514-848-3441
Audio-Visual Department H-342 Email:
Concordia University
1455 de Maisonneuve West
Montreal, QC, H3G 1M8