Vast hordes of Canadians speak out on proposed copyright legislation; lend your voice!

Michael Geist sez,

As the public outrage SOPA effectively killed SOPA and tens of thousands of Europeans take to the streets to protest ACTA, Canadians need to do their part to counter the inclusion of SOPA-style reforms into their copyright bill and to demand changes to its restrictive digital lock rules. According to documents recently obtained under the Access to Information Act, Industry Canada received thousands of letters of concern about Bill C-61, the 2008 copyright reform bill, the overwhelming majority of which focused on digital lock concerns. Just one month after the bill was tabled, the government had tracked over 27,000 letters and emails.

A year later, the government held its national copyright consultation. It generated enormous public interest with over 8,000 submissions.

Now officials have received over 50,000 emails of concern on Bill C-11 in the past couple of weeks alone, at times receiving upwards of 400 emails per minute.

The public opinion on Bill C-11 is clear. The majority support reform on two key conditions. First, no SOPA-style amendments such as website blocking or expanded liability should be added to Bill C-11. Second, the digital lock rules should be balanced by linking circumvention to actual copyright infringement.

Canadians have been speaking out on copyright reform in general and digital locks in particular for years with widely held views that reflect Canadian sensibilities about balancing protections and consumer property rights. The numbers keep growing and will continue to do so. If you have yet to speak out, write, email or tweet at the ministers and your MP providing your views on Bill C-11, now is the time to do so. If you are following the anti-ACTA rallies this weekend or tracking the C-11 debate in the House of Commons and wondering what you can do, write, email or tweet once more, asking Canadian Heritage Minister James Moore, Industry Minister Christian Paradis and your Member of Parliament: can you hear us now?

Can You Hear Us Now?