Bill C-61 Sidebar

Upon reading the bill, I’ve found an extremely critical, yet subtle conflict or paradox.

It allows for breaking technological locks to ensure that the program or product is interoperable with another program or piece of hardware. Yet, it almost specifically prevents the use of any such programs or software that could do so if it could and is used for illegal uses(ie, uploading dvds). The problem however, is that the extremely large majority usage of the deCSS code is not to upload files, but to simply be able to watch DVD’s with onerous protections, or on an alternate operating system like Linux or FreeBSD. Even though some do use it for copyright infringement, the majority usage is primarily interoperability. Thus we fall into the essential “dynamite paradox”. Dynamite( and later on, the machine gun) were invented to end wars, yet they were used for extremely nefarious purposes.And then, one must ask, does the bad outweigh the good enough to never use the technology? Or do we impose restrictions, and punish those that use it wrong? The current solution is the second for dynamite, yet, this Bill proposes to use the first solution.

Any technology can be used for ill will, just as it could be used for good will. I can use a gun to intimidate something that intends myself, or someone else, and in that case, the gun is good. But it can be used for ill as well. That does not mean however, that everyone should have guns, nor should everyone be banned from guns. Rather instead, the goal should be to prevent those whom plan ill will from getting the technology, or if found using said technology with ill will, should be punished appropiately for the actual damages done or planned.

Reference: Section 41.1(1) vs Section 41.12(1)

Bill C-61

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