Bill C-32 Analysis

Here is a page where we can analyze Bill C-32 and come up with responses to it for our MPs.
Please help improve it by editing it.


Here are some public statements on C-32:

TO ADD: Search Engine, Spark, CBC coverage. James Moore "extremist radicals" comment.

Why Digital Locks are Bad

Here are some thoughts originally floated by John van Ostrand:

Let me float these ideas around. Do they make sense?

Digital lock anti-circumvention laws are bad because:

  1. They allow corporate interest to supersede the rights of licensees granted in the Copyright Act and patent law,
    • They allow content holders to extent copyright life, or apply restrictions to public domain content,
    • A digital lock is forever, A company can extract royalties for the rights to access protected content for ever.
    • Because material with digital locks applied is treated differently than material without, the law creates two kinds of copyright.
  2. They provide a way for business to more easily obtain a monopoly on a technology,
    • Business will abuse the law in many ways to prevent competition or
      circumvent other laws or rights,
  3. They encourage the use if inferior encryption technology,
    • Why use a suitable technology when the law can be applied to simple and
      easy to break locking schemes,
    • Why is a "don't copy this!" statement not enough of a "digital lock" to fall under this law? (pnijjar)
  4. They prevent free development of software,
    • Linux, used by all sizes of business, will be less powerful and less able
      to compete,
    • Open source software can be ported to platforms that don't have the market share for official support (e.g. Minix 3, FreeBSD). Proprietary solutions are supported at the whim of the vendor. (pnijjar)
  5. They are bad for local economies,
    • If forced to migrate from Linux and open source software, money for licenses and support will be sent to foreign companies, instead of local companies,
    • Local software developers whose products access protected content will have to pay royalties forever (beyond patent and copyright laws) to technology owners,
  6. They can hold my own content hostage,
    • Digital locks on proprietary binary formats may be enforce on content like
      word processing documents, databases, or other data files making my own content
      a hostage of the software vendor.
    • Can I break a digital lock to try to recover my data from a corrupt file?

Outstanding Questions

These questions need answers. Please answer them with your research.

  • Is the blank CD/DVD levy still in effect? How much is it? Was there really a court case that said that the levy made p2p file sharing legal? What court case was it? Is that court case still in effect?
  • Under this legislation are all open source implementations of DVD players necessarily illegal?
  • Can I break a lock on a digitally-locked file that contains content I generated?

Why Security Researchers Should Not Need to Inform Their Subjects Beforehand

This article from the Wall Street Journal documents Cisco harassing Michael Lynn, a security researcher who found vulnerabilities in IOS. Bruce Schneier analyzed the situation and concludes that such shenanigans make our products more insecure.


The following people contributed to this document: Ralph Janke, John van Ostrand, Colin Mackay