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Nielsen survey methodology
Ways of listening
Proportion of units sold in Canada
by musical format
*Digital track sales data has been recorded since 2005.
Sources: Statistics Canada (1970–1985), Music Canada (1985–2004) and Nielsen SoundScan (2005–2010)
Sales Trends in Canada, 2005–2010
The new federal Bill C-11
In August 2011, the federal government tabled the Copyright Modernization Act or Bill C-11, which amends the Copyright Act. The Conservatives said they wanted to conform to the requirements of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) internet treaties, passed in December 1996. Among other amendments, the bill requires the Copyright Act to be reviewed by Parliament every five years.
What is allowed
- Copying music from one device to another (from a CD to a digital player, for example), except if the content is protected by a digital lock.
- Creating backup copies for personal use, except if the content is protected by a digital lock.
- Making a personal mash-up (a lip dub on a video-sharing site, for example) using copyright-protected music. However, it must be done without damaging the artist’s reputation or marketing potential. It cannot be made for commercial gain. The music must be legally obtained and the source must be credited.
- Using copyright-protected music for the purposes of education, satire or parody, journalism, research or private study.
- Copying or distributing a copyright-protected work in an educational setting, without paying royalties, unless it is equipped with a digital lock. In the case of online courses, the work may be kept by students for a maximum of 30 days after the course ends. In response to critics, the government maintains that these uses “do not unduly threaten the interests of copyright holders” and “could have significant social benefits – but only if they are fair.”
- Broadcasters, like radio stations, may reproduce a song onto their hard drives for a period of 30 days if they own a copy or have licence to use it. However, they still must pay every time the music is played on the air.
What is not allowed
- Bypassing a digital lock, even to make a copy of a work for personal use, such as transferring it to another device. This provision has drawn criticism, some raising the fact that it contradicts other subsections of the Copyright Act that allow private copying. The government response is that “it is up to the market to determine the extent to which commercial models based on digital locks will be applied.”
- Manufacturing, importing or selling technologies intended to break digital locks, even for private use.
- Creating or running a file-sharing website (P2P or peer-to-peer, BitTorrent) designed primarily to distribute protected content in violation of copyright. The government will authorize copyright holders to sue anyone they deem to be “enablers” of infringement. The Conservatives maintain that this is one of the first provisions of its kind in the world.
Internet service providers (ISPs)
- They are required to warn customers accused of infringing copyright if a copyright holder (e.g. a musician) reports it. They must retain this information about the alleged infringers and the courts can ask that it be divulged if the copyright holder demands it. The government feels that this notice-and-notice approach “gives copyright holders the tools necessary to assert their rights while respecting the interests and freedoms of users.” The government maintains that this approach sets Canada apart from other countries, including the United States, where a notice-and-takedown system allows providers to block access to content without a court order.
- Internet service providers and search engines are exempt from liability for copyright infringements if they act strictly as intermediaries in the hosting, caching or communication of copyrighted content.
- The Conservative government opposes the idea of a global licence (a fee tacked onto Internet subscriptions, to benefit rights-holders) because it considers “that it is unwise to impose a levy […] on internet services” and “that it cannot both encourage the development of the digital economy and support a policy whose effect would be to increase the cost of new technologies.” For the same reason, it opposes the idea of a levy on digital players.
- For any copyright infringement for non-commercial purposes (for example, private use): $100 to $5,000
- For any copyright infringement for commercial purposes: $500 to $20,000