Canada’s official, federal IP Office website offers a quiz to help the public learn about copyright – but the “correct” answer to one important question is in fact wrong, suggesting that some legitimate copying practices are infringement.
What constitutes a copyright infringement?
* Reproducing an article without the owner’s permission
* Playing songs on the radio without the owner’s permission
* Recording the performance of your favourite group without permission
* All of the above
According to the quiz, “all of the above” is the correct answer, but this is not true in Canadian copyright law. None of the above uses are categorically infringements: some uses are protected by the fair dealing exemption, others by licensing. The quiz offers no explanation for designating its purported correct answer.
I find this error a troubling detail, as it shows the national copyright office to be publicizing incorrect legal information and misleading the public on an aspect of copyright law that is important to everyday users of copyrighted materials.