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The Almighty Buck

Canadian Mint Claims Rights To Words "One Cent" 286

knorthern knight writes "A weird intersection of copyright/trademark with politics is playing out in Canada. Short background: various Canadian cities and municipalities have launched a publicity/lobbying campaign seeking a fixed take from the GST (Goods and Services Tax, a national Canadian sales tax similar to European VAT). The amount sought is 1 cent for each dollar of the purchase price. This is summarized by the slogan 'One Cent of the GST NOW.' According to a press release, the Royal Canadian Mint (the federal agency that prints Canadian paper currency and stamps Canadian coins) has demanded from the City of Toronto $47,680 in royalties for use of the phrase 'one cent', and the image of the Canadian penny. $10,000 covers the use of the words 'one cent' in the campaign website address (www.onecentnow.ca) and email address (onecentnow@toronto.ca). An additional $10,000 is demanded for the use of these words in the campaign phone number (416-ONE-CENT). The remaining $27,680 covers the use of the image of the Canadian penny in printed materials such as pins and posters." Here's a National Post article on the brouhaha.

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