IFPI welcomes Canadian Supreme Court decision on cross-border internet transmissions
London, June 30, 2004
The Supreme Court of Canada today confirmed that internet transmissions into the country from outside are covered by domestic Canadian copyright law, regardless of the origin of the transmission. The decision follows international trends and sets an important precedent worldwide.
The ruling arises from a court case in Canada, in which the international and Canadian Recording Industry organisations, IFPI and CRIA, and other rights holders organisations sought to confirm that communications which travel across Canada's border, and are received in the country, should be subject to Canadian copyright law.
The intervention took place following an appeal by Canadian Internet companies against a tariff by the Society of Canadian Composers, Authors and Music Publishers (SOCAN), a performing rights society.
The Supreme Court confirmed the industry's understanding of the law, ensuring that rights holders are protected under the Canadian Copyright Act against unauthorised transmissions in Canada, regardless of where they originate.
Allen Dixon, General Counsel of IFPI, welcomed the Canadian Supreme Court's decision: "The ruling in Canada is an important confirmation that infringing services cannot circumvent national laws by transmitting copyrighted files from outside that country. This rule, as it is implemented in other countries, will help prevent piracy havens from being established on the Internet."
CRIA reports that the Canadian music industry has experienced retail sales losses of in excess of $465 million since 1999 - as well as staff layoffs of 25% and more in the industry over the past year. More than 45,000 individuals are directly or indirectly dependent upon the health of the recording industry in Canada, including those in songwriting, recording studios, manufacturing, retailing, broadcasting, music publishing, concert promotion, management and many other primary and support services.
IFPI represents the international recording industry with over 1,500 members in more than 70 countries and National Group affiliates in 46 countries.
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