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EU Demands Canada Gut Its Copyright and Patent Laws 324

Posted by samzenpus
from the try-again dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Late last year, a draft of the European Union proposal for the intellectual property chapter of Canada, EU Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement, leaked online. The leak revealed that the EU was seeking some significant changes to Canadian IP laws. Negotiations have continued and Michael Geist has now obtained an updated copy of the draft chapter, complete with proposals from both the EU and Canada. He says the breadth of the demands is stunning — the EU is demanding nothing less than a complete overhaul of Canadian IP laws including copyright, trademark, databases, patent, geographic indications, and even plant variety rights."
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EU Demands Canada Gut Its Copyright and Patent Laws

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  • by app13b0y (767720) on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @01:35AM (#31666820)

    I, for one, welcome our new EU Overlords!

  • Wow (Score:5, Insightful)

    by TubeSteak (669689) on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @01:35AM (#31666830) Journal

    Global harmonization through treaties is creating a race to the bottom as far as the citizen's general welfare is concerned.

    I can't imagine why Canada is still negotiating such a treaty when it seems to be so insanely one-sided.

    • Re:Wow (Score:5, Insightful)

      by future assassin (639396) on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @01:55AM (#31666978) Homepage
      Because our gov. cares more about the well being of corporations then its citizens. Nothing new here but I think in the next 15 years will be a huge turning point around the world towards corporations controlling more and more of our lives. I'm ready for showdown, my parents did it in the early 80's in Poland and I'm ready to take their attitude towards corporate governments.
      • Re:Wow (Score:4, Insightful)

        by DigiShaman (671371) on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @02:39AM (#31667172) Homepage

        Because our gov. cares more about the well being of corporations then its citizens

        No, they (politicians) care about themselves first and foremost. Corporation provide kick-backs and bribes, individual citizens don't so much. In the end however, they don't give a rats ass about either. They end up getting fucked over anyways in the form of nullifying laws and regulations.

      • Because our gov. cares more about the well being of corporations then its citizens.

        Why do the citizens elect such a government then? I think the problem is that once we have given our government the power to dispose of $3.5 trillion of our money, supposedly on our behalf, annually the corruption is inevitable because it is down to the arbitrary decisions by the government bureaucrats as to who wins and who loses a share of that loot. If we have not made the government so big and powerful, the corporations
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by hitmark (640295)

          because all sides are equally in the pockets of corps. Different corps maybe, but corps non the less.

          end result is that the only options are crackpot politicians that may well start ww3 over a obscure holy book quote, or refuse to vote at all.

      • by c6gunner (950153)

        Because our gov. cares more about the well being of corporations then its citizens.

        Nonsense. You must not be living in the same Canada as me.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by AHuxley (892839)
      Poor Canada. The US wants your wood, fresh water, its draft dodgers, syrups and oil.
      The EU wants your artistic brains and Francophone culture.
      Make the US and the EU pay for both.
      Let the US feel market forces and flood the EU with low cost French and English culture.
      As for the length of copy control on works, talk to some local Canadian artists,musicians, lawyers, playwrights, authors and filmmakers.
      • by SimonGhent (57578)

        flood the EU with low cost French and English culture

        Like Michael Bublé, Bryan Adams & Céline Dion...

        Harsh!

        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by Splab (574204)

          I'm pretty sure they count as terrorism and are against the Geneva Conventions.

    • by Gerzel (240421)

      It is difficult to say one way or the other as there is no way to see what things would be like WITHOUT said treaties.

      Wars are more localized to fewer parts of the world in the past 50 years than they were before. Global Trade while it does have several substantial drawbacks comes with many undeniable benefits.

      Humanity has reached a point where it can influence and change the global environment, thus it may well become, if it is not already, necessary and vital to our survival for a means of regulation and

    • Judge Dredd (Score:3, Insightful)

      Global harmonization through treaties is creating a race to the bottom as far as the citizen's general welfare is concerned.

      When I see films, or read books, such as Judge Dredd I wonder how could this shit become reality? I ask myself whether there would be enough external sources to ensure a general liberty and rights of it citizens? Then I see shit like ACTA and this happening and I suddenly understand - scary.

  • Feh (Score:5, Funny)

    by Reed Solomon (897367) on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @01:36AM (#31666832) Homepage

    Well, they also demanded we stop the seal hunt. Are they going to request that we all wear visors while playing hockey too? Honestly. How naive.

    • Re:Feh (Score:5, Insightful)

      by blind monkey 3 (773904) on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @01:52AM (#31666960)
      There's a difference with this and seal hunts, corporations make money if seal hunts remain, corporations make money if copyright and patent laws are changed. The corporations will be on the other side for this.
      I suspect your government knows who to listen to, just as ours do.
      • Re:Feh (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Reed Solomon (897367) on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @02:12AM (#31667058) Homepage

        corporations make money if the seal hunt remains?

        really?

        corporations?

        hahahahahahahah.

        The seal hunt has never been about profitability. Most seal hunters, while they hope to profit, are hardly corporations making tons of cash. For aboriginals and the atlantic sealers its a tradition and way of life.

        Seals are hardly going extinct. And in fact high seal numbers might be threatening populations of less photogenic animals.

        The real "corporations" are PETA and their ilk. They make the real money.

  • by tsotha (720379) on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @01:37AM (#31666846)
    How do you say "fuck off" in Canadian?
  • What the hell? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Goldberg's Pants (139800) on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @01:38AM (#31666852) Journal

    Seriously, as a Canadian this disgusts me. The EU, the US... What the hell gives these assholes the right to demand ANYTHING?

    Makes me absolutely sick to read this. There is nothing wrong with Canada's laws. And that is exactly why they want it changed, so there IS something wrong with it to throw the balance off hugely in favour of coporations.

    Despicable.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by maxwell demon (590494)

      Seriously, as a Canadian this disgusts me. The EU, the US... What the hell gives these assholes the right to demand ANYTHING?

      Well, everyone can demand everything. I also can demand that you give me a billion euros, immediately. Now, there's little chance that I'll get that, and no one will consider that demand justified, but I can demand it nevertheless.

      So, where is my money? :-)

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by fatwilbur (1098563)
      Unfortunately, they can do (try) this because they are our customers. Canada's place in the economic world revolves around one thing - we have lots of natural resources that we can sell to other countries. We make so much money selling our stuff (oil, trees, etc.) that we try to place nice so you'll keep making us rich. You should know this as an Albertan ;-) It's pretty much the reason we follow step what the US is doing. Eurpoe doesn't have nearly as much leverage as the US, but Canada is looking to
      • Probably, but we EUians need those resources. It's not like we got an oilflood somewhere around, or too much timber (well, with a few noteworthy exceptions like Sweden, but given their laws I'd guess they would not enjoy clear-cutting their forests).

        You may be desperate to sell, but we're at least as desperate to buy. And, let's face it, it's not like it's hard to sell oil or timber somewhere else.

    • Seriously, as a Canadian this disgusts me. The EU, the US... What the hell gives these assholes the right to demand ANYTHING?

      Peace naturally leads to people working together. If we don't want our governments to cooperate we must invent reasons for our governments to hate each other.

      Its that simple. See google vs China.

    • Re:What the hell? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Hurricane78 (562437) <deleted@s l a s h dot.org> on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @02:00AM (#31667004)

      Germany here.
      Despite the fact that we didn’t ever elect them, they are called “our” government.
      Actually, they are more like your enemies.
      So if you ever need to throw over the EU pseudo-government, you got allies here.
      Just beware, that the reason this is like it is in the first place, is that most people here are cattle too, and we’re not the ones herding them.

    • by tsotha (720379)
      I wouldn't say there's nothing wrong with Canada's laws. Taxes are way too high on beer and cigarettes.
      • by c6gunner (950153)

        I wouldn't say there's nothing wrong with Canada's laws. Taxes are way too high on beer and cigarettes.

        That's part of the price of "free" health-care.

    • by shutdown -p now (807394) on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @02:08AM (#31667046) Journal

      Seriously, as a Canadian this disgusts me. The EU, the US... What the hell gives these assholes the right to demand ANYTHING?

      Calm down, mate. If a chief of some remote Polynesian tribe demands tomorrow that all the pale-skins from the Great White North shall submit to the will of his powerful god Yaka-Yaka, or else suffer his wrath, are you going to pay attention as well?

      If not, then treat this case the same way. After all, fundamentally, it is the same.

    • by pydev (1683904)

      Seriously, as a Canadian this disgusts me. The EU, the US... What the hell gives these assholes the right to demand ANYTHING?

      Canada wants to continue to trade with "these assholes" and Canadians want to travel to these "asshole" countries, no? But trade, travel, etc. only exist because these "asshole countries" sign agreements with Canada creating the legal basis for these activities. If Canada stops signing some agreements, then these "asshole countries" may stop signing other agreements that are more i

  • by Sparx139 (1460489) on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @01:43AM (#31666896)
    And to think that the EU had taken such a great stand with the ACTA. Then this has to happen.
    • Actually, it’s the other way around. This is older.

      But I still agree that now I won’t believe any anti-ACTA statement from the EU, until ACTA is dead, buried, and all its successors too.

    • by Per Abrahamsen (1397) on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @02:13AM (#31667064) Homepage

      The EU Commission is a non-elected body which has as it sole mandate[1] to restrict the rights of citizens, and extend the rights of EU based corporations. It is the Commission that negotiate these treaties, and in general propose new legislation.

      The EU Parliament is an elected body which cannot propose new legislation, but can, and sometimes do, block the proposals from the commission. The good stuff you hear from the EU is usually from the Parliament, but they contribute their share of crap as well, as parliaments do everywhere.

      [1] Judging by its actions.

      • by Trepidity (597)

        But you're missing all the important, freedom-loving stuff the European Commission does! For example, just a week ago, the Commission made [europa.eu] an important clarification to the law on padded waistcoats.

        It is of course quite plain that winter jackets "are generally worn over other clothing and ensure a protection against the weather (citation omitted) and, consequently, anoraks (including ski-jackets), wind-cheaters, wind-jackets and similar articles falling within those headings must have long sleeves." But you

      • by zoney_ie (740061)

        The EU commission is nominated by the member state governments. Another executive branch is the Council of the EU (Council of Ministers) which consists of the relevant government ministers from member states (e.g. Agriculture ministers for decisions in Agriculture). Also general direction of the EU is set by the European Council (heads of governments in the EU).

        The EU parliament is quite rightly a minor part of EU governance as pretty much all EU member state governments and public want the EU to remain a c

      • by Unipuma (532655)

        Currently, the European Parliament doesn't hold much power, although the Lisbon treaty did increase their power somewhat. You will either see idealistic people in the European Parliament, or people who more or less just collect a paycheck.
        I'm somewhat afraid though what would happen should the EP get more power. This would suddenly make the members of parliament interesting for the lobbyists, and I wonder how long it will take before the bunch of them start making the same decisions that the EC is currently

  • by zlel (736107) on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @01:52AM (#31666956) Homepage
    Is copyright ancillary to the author, or the author ancillary to the copyright? If human lifespan in becoming longer, shouldn't copyright extensions past an author's life be shortened instead of lengthened? Or does it still hold that the good die young?
    • by TubeSteak (669689)

      Is copyright ancillary to the author, or the author ancillary to the copyright? If human lifespan in becoming longer, shouldn't copyright extensions past an author's life be shortened instead of lengthened? Or does it still hold that the good die young?

      As long as the royalties keep flowing, an author's estate is timeless.

    • Do the world a favour, kill an author today. Help lower the length of time his/her works are under copyright. Also...someone kill George Lucus...please.

    • by roman_mir (125474)

      Don't worry about it, people with real talent mostly die relatively young.

  • Let me guess... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by calmofthestorm (1344385) on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @02:21AM (#31667092)

    ...it doesn't involve granting more protections to the consumer or public interest.

  • As someone here in the States, I have to say that I hope the Canadians tell everyone to piss off.

    Seriously, what's the EU going to do? Invade?

    Present the digitus impudicus.

    --
    BMO

    • by pydev (1683904)

      Canada is not in a position to tell anybody to "piss off", they are far too dependent on the US and the EU.

      The place to get things changed is primarily in the US, because the US is both big enough to determine the global agenda and still has a far more functional democracy than the EU.

      The EU in principle has the power to do good, but it is hopeless with its anti-democratic Commission, impotent parliament, squabbling national governments, and enormous bureaucracy. The EU make the US look like a shining beac

      • by nschubach (922175)

        Everyone that tries is decried as a loon and it's said they will never be able to change the course of the two party system we've been engrossed in.

        At this point, I wish it were true, but someone who's not Republican or Democrat has about a better chance of getting struck by lighting while winning the lottery than gaining control of anything.

        Right now is probably the best chance in forever, with Democrats still pissed off at Bush and Republicans pissed off at Obama. I still don't see it happening. All I s

    • by Shrike82 (1471633) on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @08:44AM (#31669022)

      Present the digitus impudicus.

      You hit the nail on the head. If Canada don't comply we'll set Harry Potter and his school chums on you...

  • or at least the famous Sun headline on a previous EU strong arm attempt "Up Yours Delors [currybet.net]".
  • "Notably, the draft includes many new rights for broadcasters. These rights form part of a proposed Broadcast Treaty at WIPO that has failed to achieve consensus. The EU is seeking to build support for the treaty by requiring Canada to implement many new provisions that would give broadcasters a host of new rights and force public places to pay additional fees for carry broadcasts."

    So... in other words they want places that provide public benefit to pay more money to people who don't. That's... rationa

  • by Aceticon (140883) on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @05:05AM (#31667878)

    In the EU bureaucracy, power is pretty much split into 3 blocks:
    - The European Commission - non-elected, nominated and agreed by and between the countries governments
    - The Council of Europe - representatives of each country's governments
    - The European Parliement - directly elected

    Somehow I suspect this treaty is being negociated by the European Commission, same as ACTA. That would make the "EU's" demands it contains not surprising at all: the Commission is (unsurprisingly) the one force in Europe which is deepest in the pocket of corporate special interests (for example, they were the ones that wanted Software Patents in Europe).

    The European Parliement on the other hand tends to side more with Citizens and Consumers (again, unsurprisingly).

    The funny bit is that, if the Commission does manage to get this treaty signed by Canada, it might still be voted down in Europe by the European Parliement.

  • Dear World (Score:5, Interesting)

    by whisper_jeff (680366) on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @07:40AM (#31668570)
    Dear World,

    As one of the few countries in the world whose economy is not absolutely sitting in the toilet, we, the People of Canada, would like to politely ask you all to fuck off, eh. We appreciate your opinions on our intellectual property laws but, given that we're not bordering on bankruptcy and/or forcing our people to live in a Nanny-state like the rest of you seem to be, we are forced to assume we must be doing something right while the rest of you aren't exactly laying down templates of "how it should be done."

    We do apologize for the broad generalizations that may be made in this message but, really, the point remains - fuck off, eh. Mind your own damn business and we'll mind our own. We've done pretty well at minding our business and are just fine with things as they are. Thanks.

    Sincerely and respectfully, Canada.
  • Or What? (Score:4, Informative)

    by DarthVain (724186) on Tuesday March 30, 2010 @10:25AM (#31670252)

    Seriously. The USA is by FAR our biggest trading partner. They have been trying to bend us over for years about IP, Copyright and Patent law. If we are not about to capitulate the them, what makes the EU think we give a flying fuck what they say....

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