US record labels starts fake "citizen's group" to support Canada's DMCA

A website in support of Canada's proposed US-style copyright law looks to be a work of corporate astroturf, and signs point to the Canadian Record Industry Association (mostly composed of US record labels; many Canadian labels have left to form an independent lobby that opposes much of CRIA's agenda) as the entity behind it. The group, Balanced Copyright for Canada, has bought headline placement on Bourque, and recently took down its member list after TVOntario reporter Jesse Brown announced that it appeared to consist of record execs from CRIA's member-companies.

The site provides talking-points for its supporters to use when contacting media outlets over their coverage of the bill, which criminalizes breaking "digital locks" on the copyrighted works you buy, even if all you're trying to do is lawfully enjoy your property. Canadians came out in overwhelming numbers to oppose this approach in the Canadian government's consultation on copyright (over 6000 opposed, fewer than 50 in favour), but the Conservative government has ignored their own consultation and made a law that plays into the hands of the US media companies.

It's really telling that the opposition to the Canadian DMCA has come from real grassroots: artist groups, citizen groups, technologists, educators, disabled-rights groups, archivists — people who don't hide their funding or their affiliations behind false flags. Meanwhile, the only support for this law has come from slick, fraudulent PR campaigns that shroud their origins in secrecy in order to disguise the fact that this is just the same four record labels running around in circles, wearing several hats, pretending to be a crowd.

The Copyright Lobby's Astroturf Campaign in Support of C-32