Access Copyright welcomes consultation on reforming the Copyright Board of Canada

Friday, August 11, 2017

Access Copyright applauds the Government of Canada for commencing a consultation on reforming the operations of the Copyright Board of Canada.

The Copyright Board plays an important role in ensuring a well functioning market for intellectual property and cultural goods by balancing ease of access for users with fair compensation for creators.

 “Access Copyright has long supported the need to ensure that the Copyright Board’s tariff setting process operates in a timely and efficient manner,” said Roanie Levy, CEO & President of Access Copyright. “This consultation provides a welcome opportunity to pursue meaningful reform that will promote the expedient approval of certified tariffs and also encourage users to comply with those same tariffs.”

Currently, the tariff enforcement structure in place for certain collectives fosters non-compliance amongst some users.  Ultimately, the high cost of tariff enforcement proceedings significantly affect creators getting paid properly and on time. This situation is caused by the fact that at the end of a costly enforcement procedure, the defaulting user need only pay the original value of the tariff.

The effect of this can be seen in the education system where the decision by many in the education sector to refuse to pay tariffs certified by the Copyright Board has deprived creators from earning a living from the use of their works.  The impact has led some creators and publishers to stop writing and publishing for the education sector. This situation must be remedied as soon as possible.

Access Copyright is committed to participating fully in the consultation process to propose and support solutions to modernize the Copyright Board’s operations and ensure fair compensation to creators and publishers while fostering business growth and innovation.