Peanuts and Ponies and Parodies! Oh My! 1

Generally and theoretically, ‘fair dealing’ in Canada, or ‘fair use’ in the U.S., is meant to foster creativity and innovation, to be a limitation and exception to the copyright holder’s exclusive rights. When it comes to applying fair dealing/use to parodies, however, the exception becomes murky. A Tumblr blog, “Peanutweeter”, used to have thousands of people following their juxtaposition ...

Prof Geist’s FAQ on Opting-Out of Access Copyright

With many Canadian universities opting-out of the Access Copyright interim tariff, I have been receiving a growing number of questions and emails from faculty members at schools across the country inquiring about the implications of the opt-out. All universities should be updating their faculty and students on the copyright changes including why the changes are ...

Universities Beginning to Turn to “Tech Savvy Course Alternatives”

If you have been following the Access Copyright issue in Canada, you will know that many Canadian universities have recently pulled out of the Access Copyright licensing scheme, turning instead, to what Prof Geist calls “a most flexible, tech savvy alternative” for course materials.

Patent Troll on Steroids: How America’s Patent System May Hurt Innovation 1

This American Life (TAL) is running a story this week that is well worth tuning in for. Some may have heard of Nathan Myhrvold during his time as IBM’s chief strategist and chief of technology or from his $600, six-volume cookbook. But few outside IT circles would know of his “innovative invention company” Intellectual Ventures, and how it is ...

Entire Apple Store Knockoffs in China

Fake Louis Vuitton handbags, fake Thomas the Tank Engine toy trains and fake electronics have, in essence, become the norm in China. But the recent incident takes piracy to a whole new level: fake Apple stores in Kunming, a city in the southern Yunnan province. 

Pfizer v. Ratiopharm: Invalid Patent Insufficient to Support Back-Claim Compensation

Generic drug companies have suffered a setback in the fight to claim compensation when they have been incorrectly kept off the market. The Federal Court of Appeal has refused to overturn a prohibition order against Ratiopharm, thereby disallowing Ratiopharm’s compensation claim, in spite of the fact that Pfizer’s patent is invalid. Pfizer was initially successful in preventing the ...

Canada’s Telecom Policy Quadruple Play 101 5

TekSavvy CEO Marc Gaudrault recently wrote an op-ed piece for the Financial Post, encouraging Canadians to stay on top of current, major telecom developments, as it so passionately did in its fight against UBB, because the outcome of these issues will have tangible and far-reaching effects on all Canadian telecom consumers. The best part of the piece, is ...

Miami Judge Rules Hotfile Site not Direct Copyright Infringer

Miami federal judge, Adalberto Jordan, has dismissed direct copyright infringement allegations against Hotfile.com, a popular “cyber-locker” service that allows users to upload and share files. In the 9-page decision, while the judge has dismissed Hotfile’s direct liability charge, he is allowing the case to proceed on secondary liability charges, that Hotfile has induced and profited from ...

CRTC’s Net Neutrality Regulation: Superficial

Enforcement has always been the bane of any regulatory agency’s existence. Regulation without teeth hardly merits real attention, or compliance, from those being regulated. In documents released on Friday, Professor Geist of the University of Ottawa, has found the CRTC’s well-publicised Telecom Regulatory Policy (2009), policy which is supposed to regulate net neutrality in Canada, ...

America: ISPs’ Newest Effort in Fighting Piracy

Leading ISPs in America, like Comcast and Verizon, have made a voluntary deal with movie studios and record labels to begin monitoring ISP accounts for possible piracy. Called the “Copyright Alert System“, consumers would be subject to a series of alerts if they are suspected of illegal downloading, with each subsequent alert increasingly threatening in ...