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Michael Geist
Works at University of Ottawa
Lives in Ottawa, Canada
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Michael Geist

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Canada's copyright notice-and-notice system took effect earlier this year, leading to thousands of notifications being forwarded by Internet providers to their subscribers. Groups such as the Canadian Recording Industry Association argued during the…
Canada's copyright notice-and-notice system took effect earlier this year, leading to thousands of notifications being forwarded by Internet providers to their subscribers. Groups such as the Canadian Recording Industry Association argued during the legislative process that notice-and-notice would "pose a long-term problem", yet the evidence suggested that the system could be effective in decreasing online infringement. Since its launch, there ha...
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Michael Geist

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The government's decision to extend the term of copyright for sound recordings in the budget may have taken most copyright observers by surprise, but not the music industry. I've posted earlier on their extensive lobbying efforts on the issue and how the…
The government's decision to extend the term of copyright for sound recordings in the budget may have taken most copyright observers by surprise, but not the music industry. I've posted earlier on their extensive lobbying efforts on the issue and how the extension will reduce competition, increase costs for consumers, and harm access to Canadian Heritage. The record of lobbyist meetings gives a hint of the reasons behind the extension, but a lett...
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(sarcasm)
I'm not sure I get your post, +Craig Hartel! It sounds like you don't agree, or something...
Surely you know corporations are just people - only more equal !
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Michael Geist

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I've written multiple posts on the government's surprise decision to extend the term of copyright for sound recordings without public consultation or discussion (surprise, cost to consumers, limited competition, reduced access to Canadian heritage,…
I've written multiple posts on the government's surprise decision to extend the term of copyright for sound recordings without public consultation or discussion (surprise, cost to consumers, limited competition, reduced access to Canadian heritage, lobbying impact). In recent days, a further implication has arisen: other groups are now demanding that the government extend other terms of copyright within the law.  If the government agrees to those...
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If these people really believed in their deranged version of copyright they'd be paying Shakespeare's descendants royalties.
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Michael Geist

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CMRRA, the Canadian Musical Reproduction Rights Agency, recently wrote to the Toronto Star and the Hill Times to respond to one of my columns which focused on the lobbying and denial of licensing effort to stop cheaper public domain recordings from…
CMRRA, the Canadian Musical Reproduction Rights Agency, recently wrote to the Toronto Star and the Hill Times to respond to one of my columns which focused on the lobbying and denial of licensing effort to stop cheaper public domain recordings from entering the Canadian market. The column reported that CMRRA had issued a "pay as you press" licence for the recordings to ensure that creators were paid for the works still in copyright. CMRRA was lat...
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Cause without copyrights on 50-year-old material, no one would ever make music again. :P
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Michael Geist

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Bill C-51, the anti-terrorism bill, passed third reading in the House of Commons last night as Conservative and Liberal MPs voted in favour of the bill, leaving only the NDP and Green opposed. It now heads to the Senate, which has already conducted most…
Bill C-51, the anti-terrorism bill, passed third reading in the House of Commons last night as Conservative and Liberal MPs voted in favour of the bill, leaving only the NDP and Green opposed. It now heads to the Senate, which has already conducted most of its hearings on the bill. Those hearings - which have included Canadian Privacy Commissioner Daniel Therrien - have been better than the embarrassing Public Safety and National Security review ...
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+Jhon T Nope... Just a free tattoo on the forhead that says "I'm Corrupt!"
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Michael Geist

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My recent posts on the government's surprise budget announcement that it plans to extend the term of copyright protection for sound recordings generated considerable private feedback, with several industry sources suggesting that the change is not quite…
My recent posts on the government's surprise budget announcement that it plans to extend the term of copyright protection for sound recordings generated considerable private feedback, with several industry sources suggesting that the change is not quite what it seems. In fact, despite painting the reform as an effort to protect the rights of artists, foreign record companies have been primarily concerned with eliminating new competitors who offer...
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"CMRRA advised the new competitors that it had no choice but to stop issuing the licence and that the decision stemmed from the fact that the master recordings were in the public domain."

I'm having difficulty with that sentence...
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Michael Geist

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The foundation of any national digital policy is affordable high-speed Internet access. Given the importance of the Internet to education, culture, commerce, and political participation, most countries have established ambitious targets to ensure that all…
The foundation of any national digital policy is affordable high-speed Internet access. Given the importance of the Internet to education, culture, commerce, and political participation, most countries have established ambitious targets to ensure that all citizens enjoy access to reasonably priced broadband services. My weekly technology law column (Toronto Star version, homepage version) notes the importance of broadband is typically taken as...
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Because Luddite politics. 
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Michael Geist

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Research in Motion co-founder Jim Balsillie wrote a lengthy article on Canadian innovation policy last week that focused primarily on intellectual property policy. While the article would have benefited from some editing, Balsillie's core argument is that…
Research in Motion co-founder Jim Balsillie wrote a lengthy article on Canadian innovation policy last week that focused primarily on intellectual property policy. While the article would have benefited from some editing, Balsillie's core argument is that Canada needs to do a better job of identifying and protecting domestic interests when it is developing intellectual property policy. There is much to agree with in the Balsillie piece. For ex...
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Copyright does not help artists. Patents do not help innovation. Ideas only multiple if shared.
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Michael Geist

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The competitiveness of Canadian wireless services has been the source of an ongoing and contentious debate for years. Last week, Canada's telecom regulator concluded that there is a competitiveness problem, yet in a decision surprisingly applauded by many…
The competitiveness of Canadian wireless services has been the source of an ongoing and contentious debate for years. Last week, Canada's telecom regulator concluded that there is a competitiveness problem, yet in a decision surprisingly applauded by many groups, declined to use much of its regulatory toolkit to address the problem. Instead, it placed a big bet on the prospect of a smaller wireless carrier somehow emerging as a fourth national pl...
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Michael Geist

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The government yesterday tabled its budget implementation bill (Bill C-59), which includes provisions to extend the term of copyright for sound recordings and performances. The extension adds 20 years to the term (to 70 years). It also caps the term at…
The government yesterday tabled its budget implementation bill (Bill C-59), which includes provisions to extend the term of copyright for sound recordings and performances. The extension adds 20 years to the term (to 70 years). It also caps the term at 100 years after the first fixation of the sound recording or performance. The change is not retroactive, so sound recordings currently in the public domain will stay there. The government's unexpec...
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Harper's greasing the skids for the TPP
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Michael Geist

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The CRTC released it much anticipated decision on the wholesale wireless industry yesterday, painting the decision as fostering "sustainable competition, innovation and investment in the wireless services market." The ruling generated supportive comments…
The CRTC released it much anticipated decision on the wholesale wireless industry yesterday, painting the decision as fostering "sustainable competition, innovation and investment in the wireless services market." The ruling generated supportive comments from consumer groups, community groups, new entrants such as Wind Mobile, and business analysts who thought that the CRTC might go further. The regulated wholesale roaming rates has attracted the...
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Michael Geist

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The launch of Canada's anti-spam law generated considerable criticism suggesting that the law was unenforceable and would not have a discernible impact on spam. Recent enforcement actions by the CRTC and the Competition Bureau, which led to millions on…
The launch of Canada's anti-spam law generated considerable criticism suggesting that the law was unenforceable and would not have a discernible impact on spam. Recent enforcement actions by the CRTC and the Competition Bureau, which led to millions on fines, demonstrates that the law can be used to target businesses that run afoul of the law. Now a new study from Cloudmark, a network security firm, concludes that there was a significant drop in ...
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This does nothing to solve malicious targeted spam (phishing) since those attacks are from outside the country and are impossible to trace. They're more moving towards robocalls instead of email too.
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Have him in circles
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Law Professor
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  • University of Ottawa
    Law Professor, present
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Introduction
Dr. Michael Geist is a law professor at the University of Ottawa where he holds the Canada Research Chair in Internet and E-commerce Law.  He has obtained a Bachelor of Laws (LL.B.) degree from Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto, Master of Laws (LL.M.) degrees from Cambridge University in the UK and Columbia Law School in New York, and a Doctorate in Law (J.S.D.) from Columbia Law School.  Dr. Geist has written numerous academic articles and government reports on the Internet and law and was a member of Canada’s National Task Force on Spam.  He is an internationally syndicated columnist on technology law issues with his regular column appearing in the Toronto Star, Ottawa Citizen, and the BBC.  Dr. Geist is the editor of In the Public Interest:  The Future of Canadian Copyright Law, published in 2005 by Irwin Law, the editor of several monthly technology law publications, and the author of a popular blog on Internet and intellectual property law issues. Dr. Geist serves on the Privacy Commissioner of Canada’s Expert Advisory Board, on the Canadian Digital Information Strategy’s Review Panel, and on the Information Program Sub-Board of the Open Society Institute. He has received numerous awards for his work including the Les Fowlie Award for Intellectual Freedom from the Ontario Library Association in 2009, the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s Pioneer Award in 2008, Canarie’s IWAY Public Leadership Award for his contribution to the development of the Internet in Canada and he was named one of Canada’s Top 40 Under 40 in 2003.
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