Distribution Access’ Policy Regarding Canada’s Copyright Modernization Act

As you may know, Canada’s Copyright Modernization Act (“Bill C-11”) was proclaimed in force on November 7, 2012. As a result, we have been receiving many inquiries from our customers asking what the effect of Bill C-11 is with respect to access to our educational content.

Bill C-11 was introduced to modernize Canadian copyright law to be more in step with the manner in which Canadians use copyright-protected materials, in a technologically neutral way.

Bill C-11 broadens the scope of the fair dealing exception under the Copyright Act to specifically include education, in addition to private study, research, criticism and review. With this change, educators, students and researchers will have greater access to publicly available copyright-protected material by recognizing education as a legitimate purpose for fair dealing.

However, fair dealing for the purposes of education does not give users an unlimited right to reproduce, distribute and otherwise use copyright-protected works.

In recognizing that copyright owners and creators need to be fairly compensated for their works, Bill C-11 created a careful balance, limiting free access and use to copyright-protected works where (i) the copyright owner or creator has protected the works by the use of “digital locks”; (ii) the website where the works appear or the works include a clearly visible notice prohibiting free access or use to such works; (iii) the works are available in a commercial format; or (iv) the user knows or should have known that the works are being made available in violation of the copyright owner’s rights.

Our products are copyright-protected and only users who subscribe to our on-line services and/or pay for digital licenses for our products have access to reproduce and otherwise use such products in accordance with the rights granted by us and/or as set out in our Terms of Use applicable to subscribers of our service. Accordingly, Bill C-11 has no effect on the manner in which we continue to make our products available to our customers and how our customer may use our products.

We aim to balance the needs of the creators of our works with the needs of our educational clients. Our educational clients need high-quality educational programs and our creators need to have an incentive to create and develop such programs by being compensated for their work and investment. As there is little or no commercial market for most educational products, outside the educational institutions and teachers who purchase them, we and our creators need to be properly compensated for our works so that we may continue to deliver the best quality educational content to schools, businesses and organizations in various formats and media, including via DVD, digital files or on-line delivery.

We continue to develop our products and strive to be our customers’ preferred destination for content that educates, informs and entertains.

If you have any questions or comments, please don’t hesitate to contact us at info@distributionaccess.com.


Doug Connolly
President and Chief Operating Officer

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