selven writes: With the left wing split between the Liberals and a resurgent New Democratic Party (NDP), the Conservative party has won a majority government. The final tally is 167 C, 34 L, 102 NDP, 4 for the separatist Bloc Quebecois (down from 47) and 1 for the Green Party. The Canadian conservative party is known for such things as his attempts to pass highly restrictive copyright laws and their platform for this election intends to increase internet surveillance, a possibility of warrantless disclosure laws and a right to break digital locks, as well as no review for the CRTC, something which all other major parties support.
selven writes: In Canada, it seems like tough-on-crime is not as easy a free ticket to popularity as is previously thought. A senior cabinet minister in Prime Minister Stephen Harper's government came under fire yesterday for suggesting that Canada needs to build more prisons, in part because of a rise in unreported crimes. "We're very concerned... about the increase in the amount of unreported crimes that surveys clearly show are happening," Day (the cabinet minister) said at a news conference. "People simply aren't reporting the same way they used to." However, Statistics Canada quickly shot down Day's assumptions, saying that since they surveyed only eight types of unreported crimes their numbers cannot be compared to police-reported crime statistics. Actual numbers, however, find themselves received with unwelcoming arms by Harper's government: "We do not use statistics as an excuse not to get tough on criminals," Stephens wrote in an email.
selven writes: A Canadian Supreme Court ruling has clarified the right of media institutions to protect their confidential sources, saying that the right is not absolute "when the law-enforcement interest in obtaining information for an investigation is greater". The specific case revolves around a forged bank document sent to the National Post in 2001, which the court ruled must be turned over since it is a "physical evidence of a crime". The judgement may have an impact on the willingness of whistleblowers to come forward. Judge Binnie wrote "The alleged forgery is distinct from whistle-blowing. In terms of getting out the truth, the 'leak' of a forged document undermines rather than advances achievement of the purpose of the privilege claimed by the media in the public interest." However, this case does affect legitimate whistleblowers harshly: the onus is now on the media to justify the confidentiality of a source, and not on the prosecutor to justify trumping journalistic privilege.
from the turn-about-is-fair-play dept.
jvillain writes "The Canadian Recording Industry Association faces a lawsuit for 60 billion dollars over willful infringement. These numbers may sound outrageous, yet they are based on the same rules that led the recording industry to claim a single file sharer is liable for millions in damages. Since these exact same companies are currently in the middle of trying to force the Canadian government to bring in a DMCA for Canada, it will be interesting to see how they try to spin this."