Library and Archive Communities Responses to Consultation on a Modern Framework for Artificial Intelligence and the Internet of Things
September 20, 2021
The Canadian library and archives communities last week published responses to the Government of Canada’s Consultation on a Modern Copyright Framework for Artificial Intelligence and the Internet of Things.
Brief to the Government of Canada: Consultation on a Modern Framework for Artificial Intelligence and the Internet of Things
Canadian Federation of Library Associations, and
Canadian Association of Research Libraries
The Canadian Federation of Library Associations (CFLA), and the Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL) jointly submits this response to the Government of Canada’s Consultation on a Modern Framework for Artificial Intelligence and the Internet of Things.
Libraries have a societal role to provide equitable access to information and preserve knowledge. In Canada, the Copyright Act recognizes the unique function of libraries to achieve the government’s public policy objectives around research, innovation and lifelong learning through the Act’s exceptions and limitations.
CFLA and CARL recognize the cultural importance of Canadian creators, the need to support Canadian heritage, and to provide access to their works. Canadian libraries support Canadian authors and publishers with significant annual purchases and promotion of their print and digital content. Canadian libraries, archives and museums (LAMs) have consistently demonstrated a clear commitment to Canadian heritage.
Summary of Recommendations
In summary, in order to address the issues raised by CFLA and CARL, we recommend that the Government of Canada:
- Amend the Copyright Act to make fair dealing purposes illustrative rather than exhaustive.
- Amend the Copyright Act to create a specific exception for TDM that applies to both commercial and non-commercial uses.
- Ensure that AI authored works are not protected by copyright.
- Put mechanisms in place to ensure that AI authored works that infringe copyright are removed from distribution and any circulation of the output ceased by the person or organization that owns the AI process that created the work.
- Amend section 41 of the Copyright Act so that Canadians and LAMs can circumvent a technical protection measure in order to diagnose, maintain or repair their products.
- Amend section 41 of the Copyright Act so that Canadians and LAMs can circumvent technical protection measures for any non-infringing purpose.
- Amend the Copyright Act so that no exception to copyright can be overridden by contract.
- Incorporate a broad definition of interoperability into the Copyright Act: “the ability of a system, software or product to exchange and make use of information and services with other systems.”
- Remove the part of section 41.12 (1) of the Copyright Act that limits the exception to individuals who own or have a license to use the computer program in question.
Archival Community Response to “A Consultation on a Modern Copyright Framework for Artificial Intelligence and the Internet of Things”
September 16, 2021
We have carefully considered and commented on the relevant issues presented in the consultation paper on Artificial Intelligence and the Internet of Things in Canada. The important public service mission of Archives as a trusted repository for purposes of research, education, and culture, must be taken into careful consideration in implementation of any changes to the copyright framework.
Our recommendations include:
- Ensure public policy and legislation that involves AI is undertaken only after wide public consultation and discussion that includes broad public policy concerns such as protection of privacy and personal information, and other human rights.
- Add an exception to permit the making of copies of legally acquired material in order to carry out a computational analysis of the content of the material for commercial and non-commercial purposes. The exception must not be nullified by contractual terms.
- Outputs of AI process should be in the public domain and should not receive full copyright protection. The terms of any protection that may be assigned to AI outputs should receive full public discussion and debate, creating no more than a variation of what is sometimes called “thin copyright”.
- Circumvention of TPMs should be permitted for any activity that is otherwise allowable under the Copyright Act.
- Amend the Copyright Act to allow LAMs and all Canadians to circumvent TPMs in order to diagnose, maintain, or repair their products, not subject to contract override.