Ottawa's MP3 fee quashed

Consumers may soon be paying less for MP3 players after the Federal Court of Appeal ruled that special copyright levies applied to digital music players are not legal. A 71-page decision by Mr. Justice Marc Noël found that although the Copyright Board of Canada was seeking to protect music writers and performers from the "harm" caused by digital copying of music when it imposed the MP3 levies last December, the board did not have the legislative authority to do so.

Canada's Copyright Act gives the federal board the authority to apply levies on blank media such as compact discs and audio cassettes. But the wording of the act has not kept up with the new technology of MP3 players, represented by the wildly popular iPod, which use an embedded memory rather than discs or cassettes, to store digital copies of songs.

News source: The Globe and Mail

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