A few of Canada’s top musicians are asking the federal government to update copyright law, claiming that the current situation has caused music sales to drop by a third – almost $500 million – in just a few years, as well as costing thousands of jobs and countless lost career opportunities. According to a Macleans article:
The industry tracked illegal downloads of Tragically Hip music for a month this year. Henderson said there were 2.8 million attempts to download Tragically Hip music, compared with 1,000 legal purchases through the on-line music store Puretracks.
“That translates to about a quarter-million records in a month,” said Henderson.
This of course makes the flawed assumption that every download is a lost album sale, which is clearly not the case. The musicians neglect to mention that Canadians pay a levy on a blank recording media, the proceeds of which go to Canadian musicians. The Supreme Court took this into account in their recent decision that copying was legal in Canada. Essentially every Canadian who purchases a blank CD is deemed guilty of copying music. There was no mention by the artists of removing this levy.
The musicians also noted that the three-year, $95-million Canada Music Fund expires this year. They asked the government to provide long-term sustainable funding to the music industry. So they want to limit Canadian rights, take away the ability to copy music, keep taxing citizens as if they are copying music, and also take a few million more tax dollars.