New TPP leak shows Canada would be required to massively overhaul copyright, damaging free expression and censoring Internet
Trans-Pacific Partnership text reveals that U.S. pressure could result in new rules for Canadians that allow for website blocking, and new criminal penalties for copyright infringement
“These changes will impact everyone who uses the Internet, and the government must not give way and lock them in with zero public consultation,” said Meghan Sali, Campaigns Coordinator at OpenMedia. “Particularly as these secretive negotiations are continuing during our federal election, Canadians deserve a clear commitment that this caretaker government will not agree to these kind of radical policy changes that could tie the hands of an incoming government.”
Specific changes to Canadian law as suggested by the recent leak include:
Lengthening the terms for copyright from the global standard of ‘life of the creator plus 50 years’ to ‘life of the creator plus 70 years’–the U.S. standard.
New criminal penalties for the circumvention of digital locks.
Introduction of site-blocking legislation for the purposes of combating alleged copyright infringement.
On Monday, the Canadian Privy Council office released new rules that allow the caretaker government to continue negotiating the TPP, but forbid it from ratifying the deal before the election.
As copyright expert Professor Michael Geist said, “committing to significant policy changes would go well beyond the description of a caretaker government that should be largely limited to “routine” activities.”
The most recent round of TPP negotiations concluded last week in Hawaii without a deal being reached, but many believe a deal must be completed by the end of August if it has any chance of being signed this year.
OpenMedia is an award-winning community-based organization that safeguards the possibilities of the open Internet. We work toward informed and participatory digital policy by engaging hundreds of thousands of people in protecting our online rights.