Copyright Modernization Act

Madam Speaker, the hon. member for Timmins—James Bay has been a long champion on this issue. Perhaps in this session of Parliament we will see changes made to address the concerns.

The Minister of Canadian Heritage has told us he is open to change. I am certainly very concerned with the concerns of the Canadian Library Association that digital locks will impede its ability to use materials in the public interest.

Would the member for Timmins—James Bay agree with the library association that perhaps adding the words “for an infringing use” to qualify this requirement of a digital lock would have any effect in making the legislation less egregious?

Mr. Charlie Angus: Madam Speaker, certainly the position in the New Democratic Party is that the bill is highly problematic. However, we believe in updating the copyright regime and we believe it is possible with amending language.

For example, the concerns of Canadian librarians were not heard by the government, but it is possible to find amending language to ensure that we would differentiate between what would be done for infringing purposes and what would be done in order to allow people the education opportunities that exist in the digital realm. We saw it done with the other WIPO compliant countries.

If the government is not willing to come to those reasonable balanced compromises, then Bill C-11 will not be balanced. It will be detrimental to Canadian artists, consumers, students and educators.

We are more than willing to bring forward the amending language that will fix the problems of the bill. The problems are many, but they can be fixed. What it will take is whether there is good will on the part of the government to step back a bit and say that it has come so far down the road, that it did not get it right, so we should work together. It is not in the interests of the Canadian Parliament to delay copyright legislation. It is not in the interests of Canadian Parliament not to move forward with copyright. HOwever, it is definitely not in the interests of the Canadian Parliament to move forward with a bill that is fundamentally flawed.