Internet As a Canadian Election Issue

The Canadian election has never been any tighter in history.

Note: This is an article I wrote that was published elsewhere first. It has been republished here for archival purposes

With the Conservatives and the Liberals sitting at dead even with NDP simply making gains it appears some events have taken place that made the Liberal party, one of the two candidates likely to win, has become less transparent about where they stand on election issues.

Internet, copyright, DRM, TPM, and similar issues aren’t typically headline grabbers these days. Maybe they’ll be a side note or a footnote in some places, if at all, in mainstream media, but there has been pressure for some answers. As all parties ramp up their efforts to gain attention for votes, it seems that the Liberal has taken some interesting steps in their effort to win the next election.

Stories have been spreading and even made it’s way into Michael Geists blog about a Liberal utilising the advertising arm of the copyright stakeholders for a Liberal fundraiser that charges 250 dollars Canadian per person.

Of course, the most well known copyright movements was when they tabled Bill C-60 and Bill C-74. Both bills raised different degrees of disapproval in the days leading up to their demise when the Conservatives tabled a motion of non-confidence, killing the bills in the process.

Now, most recently is the Liberals answering questions sent by CIPPIC. In the Liberals response, the Liberal party of Canada answered the question about protecting Canadians from harmful protection measures such as the Sony Rootkit DRM, “The Liberal Party of Canada supports technology that protects digital artistic content and we will continue to work hard to facilitate consensus amongst stakeholders in copyright matters. We introduced a wide ranging piece of copyright legislation in the last Parliamentary session that encourages creativity and protects the rights of creators, while ensuring diffusion of knowledge and access to cultural products.”

For anyone opposing the Sony BMG Rootkit DRM measure, this is not exactly an enlightening response considering the answer reflects the tabling of Bill C-60 and fails to even mention the rootkit as a harmful technology to computer security.

With a number of days before the election, anything could happen, but it seems likely that it will be another minority government. So in order for new legislation to be passed, there needs to be other parties agreeing to the bills before they can be passed.

Drew Wilson on Twitter: @icecube85 and Google+.

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