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A Response to Minister Moore

November 28, 2010 – ACTRA is disappointed that Heritage Minister James Moore continues to misrepresent the position of creators in the media.

I would like to set the record straight on several matters starting with Minister Moore’s statement to Playback that he has accepted “five of the six recommendations that ACTRA made”.  ACTRA made a number of recommendations during last year’s copyright consultations. In our read of Bill C-32 he has given us one – the proposed implementation of provisions of the WIPO Internet Treaties.  This is something Canada undertook to do well over a decade ago.  It would seem the Conservative government believes that implementation of these international standards should come at the expense of creating a swath of exceptions to long-standing creators’ rights in Canada.  We disagree.

We also find it disingenuous that the Minister continues to misinform the public by calling the private copying levy a ‘tax’ that would “punish law abiding consumers”.  The Minister is well aware that taxes, like the HST, are collected by governments while the private copying levy is a form of royalty that creators earn from the use of their work.  I can only assume that the Minister of Heritage is attempting to inflame public opinion against artists and their right to earn a living from their work.

Finally, the Minister has stated on several occasions that he has never received a proposal on how the extension of the private copying levy to digital audio recording devices would work. The Minister has repeated that statement despite having been given a detailed proposal by the Canadian Private Copying Collective.

ACTRA has met several times with Minister Moore and we will be making a formal request to do so again. We believe it is in everyone’s best interest to find a way to work together to find forward-thinking solutions to compensate creators for use of their work.

Stephen Waddell

ACTRA National Executive Director

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