Saturday, March 28, 2015

The troll loophole

There's something you need to know regarding copyright infringement in Canada and how your government is throwing you under the bus.

US media corporations want you to believe that you can be sued for up to $150,000, or even lose your internet access, simply for being 'suspected' of copyright infringement. These ridiculous claims are based on US law, not Canadian law. These notices are sent out based on unproven accusations, untested in a court of law. It’s a tactic to try and shakedown Canadian internet users just like they've tried in the US. A cash-grab designed to bail out Big Media’s outdated business model. Our Industry Minister James Moore has done nothing to protect Canadians from this harassment and it could result in innocent people caving to the threat just to avoid court, etc. Your government doesn't seem to care.

Canada’s copyright rules are meant to be fair and balanced as compared to US rules, but a legal loophole is allowing US copyright trolls to intimidate and threaten Canadians with settlement offers. The offers don't even come directly from the entertainment companies in most cases, they are generated by 3rd party companies who do nothing but threaten internet users based on IP addresses (which proves nothing by the way). The same American copyright trolls who are threatening Canadians have tried these dirty tricks south of the border, and have even been taken to court for their abusive and illegal tactics. There is no proof provided (or gathered for that matter) that the targets of these letters have done anything wrong.

The government has already admitted that we have a problem, but they haven’t taken any action to close the legal loophole. In the meantime, Canadians are getting notices every day, telling them to pay up now or get sued for hundreds of thousands of dollars, or more. The fact is, even if you are found guilty of copyright infringement for personal use, the most a Canadian court will punish you with is $5000.

Our own copyright laws are being co-opted and abused by foreign companies who are trying to use extrajudicial measures to squeeze consumers, before they've even been proven to have done anything wrong. Do yourself a favour, call your MP and complain. They're in government to serve YOUR interests and rights, not those of a foreign corporate giant.

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