Canada-Europe Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement—Copyright ProtectionPublished on 4 March 2014 Your Question Period by Senator James Cowan (retired)
Click play to listen to the audio of this question. Please note that the audio is provided in the language in which the senators spoke. Senators may speak either official language in the Senate Chamber. For the full text of the translated exchange please click here.
Hon. James S. Cowan (Leader of the Opposition):
My question, of course, is for the Leader of the Government in the Senate. As he will know, as part of our new approach to our work in the Senate, we’ve invited Canadians to submit questions that they would like to have answered by the government. I can say that the response has been immediate and encouraging. It shows that it’s not only parliamentarians who are looking for more information about the government but that ordinary Canadians are looking for that as well.
The question that I want to pose to you today, sir, is provided by Sterling Mancuso of Newmarket, Ontario. His question is this:
The proposed Canada-European Union free trade agreement is attempting to covertly and radically alter Canada’s copyright laws. Under the proposed agreement, Canada would have to extend copyright protection by a further 20 years, to life of the author plus 70 years, up from the current 50 years, which is already ridiculously long. The treaty would also allow corporations to force Canadians to disclose their private actions on the Internet, under the guise of copyright protection. Can the Leader of the Government in the Senate explain why the Conservative Government is willing to give up Canadians’ right to a free Internet?