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Squawk Box June 19 with Michael Geist

Michael Geist

Image by yulbuzz via Flickr

The last few weeks have been terrible set backs for personal privacy, and the privileges ordinary people enjoy when they buy and use music, video and other forms of media.

Today’s guest was Dr. Michael Geist, an internationally recognized expert in these areas. We discussed Bill C-61 the Canadian copyright law tabled last week, as well as the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement leaked in late May which seeks to enable border searches of computers and music players, and require ISPs to cooperate to provide information about suspected copyright infringers without a warrant.

Michael gave us a brief overview of what the legislation is and how close it is to the DMCA.  Bill C-61, far from being a made in Canada solution, appears to be a clone of the worst parts of the DMCA, with all kinds of negative implications for consumers, and privacy. It has generated massive amounts of commentary here as a result.

We speculated that the reason for introducing the bill now was simply to let it lie over the summer and get it out of the public consciousness.

We also talked about ACTA, which is an international treaty designed to apply the same rules between countries.  Affecting the European Community, Australia, New Zealand, and North America, ACTA purportedly will have far reaching implications, including an enforcement group.  Michael cautioned, however, that the treaty is still not visible to the public, and counseled the government to engage in a more transparent process.

On the call: Michael Geist, Dan York, Jim Courtney, Craik Pyke, Dave Brown, Jeb Brilliant, James Body, Peter Childs, Randall Howard and Dale Gass.

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