Canadian Rhapsody: Copyright Law and Research Libraries
Australian Academic and Research Libraries, Vol. 25, No. 3, pp. 193-213, September 2004
21 Pages Posted: 14 Oct 2004
This article considers the ground-breaking Supreme Court of Canada decision in The Law Society of Upper Canada v CCH Canadian Limited. The matter involved legal publishers bringing an action for copyright infringement against the Law Society of Upper Canada for operating a photocopy and custom copy service at the Great Library of Osgoode Hall. The Supreme Court of Canada decision laid down important precedents in relation to originality, authorisation, and the defence of fair dealing. The ruling has been hailed as 'one of the strongest pro-user rights decisions from any high court in the world, showing what it means to do more than pay mere lip service to balance in copyright'. This decision will have important implications for the regulation of new technologies. The approach has been applied in two decisions dealing copyright law and the Internet - the Canadian Federal Court case of BMG Canada v John Doe, and the Supreme Court of Canada 'Tariff 22' case. The Supreme Court of Canada decision in The Law Society of Upper Canada v CCH Canadian Limited provides an impetus to reconsider the judicial interpretation of user rights in Australian jurisprudence.
Keywords: Copyright law, research and lending libraries, photocopiers, originality, authorisation, fair dealing, safe harbours for Internet service providers
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