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Copyright bill changes urged as hearings begin

Date added: Monday, February 27, 2012

Blind Canadians concerned

A group representing blind Canadians said the copyright reform bill is of great importance to them and noted that less than 10 per cent of printed material is available in an accessible format.

Marc Workman, national director of the AEBC, said access to material should not be based on exemptions for blind people in legislation, but instead on a commitment on the part of copyright holders to make accessible formats in the first place.

Bill C-11 does contain an exemption that would allow for digital locks to be broken by blind people, and Workman said while that exemption is supported, most blind people don't have the technological expertise to do it.

"Breaking the digital lock on copyrighted works is almost certain to be beyond the means of the average blind Canadian," he said.

Circumventing TPMs places a burden on organizations that produce alternative formats of material for blind Canadians, Workman added. His group urged MPs to accept a series of recommendations on how to amend the bill to better balance the needs of blind Canadians.

Read more (in new window) at http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/story/2012/02/27/pol-copyright-committee.html

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