Goodbye Silly Tax – Hello Again Silly Laws

Yesterday The Supreme Court of Canada ruled against the levy on recordable media like Mp3 players. My iPod was purchased in the States so I never paid the tax, but from what I understand if you bought your iPod in Canada and paid the levy, you might be eligible for a refund; great for you.

However, as Canadian copyright lawyer Michael Geist points out, the ruling is actually not so good for users of the iPod because without the tax (although we’ll certainly hear more about this in the future) it looks like the government now considers any copying of music onto any hard drives, including iPod’s or personal computer drives, as illegal.

Further, today’s decision represents a serious blow to the iPod, which has been an incredible boon to the music industry. Simply put, copying store bought CDs onto iPods, as CRIA’s own Graham Henderson has supported, may now be unlawful in Canada since it is difficult to find an exception within the Copyright Act that would permit that form of copying. While perhaps some in the industry may think this is a good thing as it transitions users to re-purchase the same music yet again as MP3 files from services such as iTunes, I think it will ultimately lower the value that consumers associate with music to the detriment of everyone in the industry.

Link to
news report on the issue.

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