Case Comment: Blacklock’s Reporter v. Canadian Vintners Association 2015 CanLII 65885 (ON SCSM) | Centre for Law, Technology and Society | University of Ottawa

The analysis by David Fewer, of U of Ottawa’s Faculty of Law Canadian Internet Policy & Public Interest Clinic (CIPPIC), brilliantly summarises the case and its plausible implications. This is a small-claims court case; its jurisprudential reach is limited. But the extraordinary misreading of copyright law, trends, and logic shown by the Court, and the outsize damages the judge awarded to the plaintiff, a newsletter publisher, are a different matter. As Fewer argues,

As of the publication date of this comment, no appeal has been filed. If that remains the case, we will be stuck with this decision on the books. While the Court’s musings on copyright are not binding, the case will nonetheless be used in support of the activities of copyright trolls, in support of expansive claims of infringement on the flimsiest of bases, and in support of expansive liability claims resting on the circumvention of a business model. But while the jurisprudential reach of this case may well prove meagre, its practical effects in motivating trolls may prove more damaging by far.

 

Source: Case Comment: Blacklock’s Reporter v. Canadian Vintners Association 2015 CanLII 65885 (ON SCSM) | Centre for Law, Technology and Society | University of Ottawa