( Reuters ) - The Canadian music biz is breathing a sigh of relief after a government pledge to introduce long-awaited copyright legislation aimed at solving the country's music piracy problem.
The legislation might be introduced as soon as within the next few weeks. Caroline Grondin, spokesperson for the Industry Canada ministry, said the government is aware of the need to move quickly.
" Canada's Copyright Act needs to be reformed to respond to the challenges of the digital age," she said. "New protections proposed for the benefit of rights holders will seek to address online infringement as well as create a legal framework that encourages the rollout, by rights holders, of new business models."
Renewed interest in Canada's Copyright Act followed the announcement of the legislation in October's Conservative Party "throne speech," essentially a public list of the government's upcoming priorities. Industry sources told Billboard that the government has been under pressure from foreign countries to update the legislation, which could be introduced before Parliament begins its holiday break in December.
Graham Henderson, president of labels body the Canadian Recording Industry Assn. (CRIA), said the legislation will demonstrate the country's commitment to protecting its songwriters and musicians.
"Is it going to replace our lost revenue every year? Of course not," Henderson said. "But it is a start. Right now, our big problem is that digital sales aren't replacing lost physical sales. A new Copyright Act would help foster new digital business models that haven't appeared in Canada because of piracy."