April 2017

In April we have World Book and Copyright Day
and #ipday. Let’s highlight it with some
good news about copyright!

Authors and publishers come together to fight for their rights

Presenting a united front, a group of 350 authors and 46 publishers from Quebec joined their voices to send a clear message to the three candidates vying to become the new Rector of Université Laval. The group reminded the candidates that it’s important for Laval, like the other educational institutions in Quebec, to realize that only by obtaining real support from the creative sector can the university guarantee the innovation that it says it’s striving for. 

The authors and publishers hope that the university’s new management team will focus on resolving the copyright situation as quickly as possible.

Read the news release (in French) from the Union des écrivaines et des écrivains québécois (UNEQ) showing the list of signatories.

Agreement between Copibec and Quebec universities (with one notable exception!) 

Copibec and Quebec’s universities have renewed their agreement on reproducing copyright protected works. In the coming weeks, each of the universities will sign the new four-year agreement which will run from June 2017 to May 2021. Under the agreement, royalties of $13.50 will be paid for each full-time equivalent student. This $1.50 reduction per student versus the 2014-2017 period was due mainly to the current legal and legislative context. 

The agreement with Copibec covers 17 of the province’s 18 universities and, for the first time, includes TÉLUQ, the French-language university offering all its courses via distance education.  Université Laval therefore remains the only Quebec university that has refused to try to reach an agreement with Copibec. 

Despite the lower royalty rate per student, we’re pleased that an agreement has been reached and that Quebec universities are continuing their long-term partnership with us, helping to ensure that authors and publishers will be paid royalties for the use of their works at the university level. 

For the 2015-2016 university year, Quebec universities reported more than 47 million copies of copyright protected works under their Copibec licence and paid approximately $2.8 million in royalties.

Quebec government renewed both its licensing agreements

The Quebec government, through its Centre des services partagés, has also decided to continue supporting copyright and collective rights management by renewing both its licensing agreements with Copibec. The licences have been renewed for a three-year term running from April 2017 to March 2020.

Under the renewed licence covering works reproduced by government ministries and budgetary organizations, the rate per full-time employee will be raised 2% per year, going to $17.15 in 2017-2018, $17.50 in 2018-2019 and $17.85 in 2019-2020. The licence also covers excerpts from copyrighted works inserted into education ministry exams at the college level.

The new agreement makes it possible for Copibec to offer similar licensing provisions to non-budgetary organizations such as the Quebec revenue agency, Héma-Québec and the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec. In 2016-2017, about 50 non-budgetary organizations had a Copibec licence allowing their employees to reproduce copyrighted works.

In addition, Copibec and the Quebec government renewed their agreement on distributing digital press reviews with content taken from four major newspapers in the Postmedia Network: The Gazette, The Record, National Post and Ottawa Citizen. Each ministry and organization can decide whether or not the licence will apply to them. It includes an annual fee calculated according to the number of people authorized to access the press review.

We’re very pleased with the Quebec government’s decision to renew its licensing agreements. It’s a concrete way for the government to show that it supports the right of authors and publishers to be paid royalties for the use of their works. The Quebec government has taken the “right” approach!

© © ©

Coordinator: Caroline Lacroix 
Contributors: Rose-Marie Lafrance, Frédérique Couette, Nicolas Boudreault and Eve St-Aubin
Translator: Brian Colwill 


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