Canadian Copyright Row MP Under Hacker Attack

Canadian MP Sam Bulte has been accused of taking campaign contributions from the copyright industries and supporting laws serving industry interests. The attack has come from Canadian fileswappers, who accuse the MP of potentially misleading her consitutuents during an all-candidates meeting.

Downloaders are angered by the MP's support for copyright protection legislation which they say will result in the indiscriminate prosecution of people who engage in the twenty-first century's equivalent of tape-trading: file-sharing.
The MP's critics taped the candidates meeting, at which the Liberal MP responded to questions about her campaign financing. The MP said 90% of donations to her campaign came from private individuals and that she did not accept money from special interest groups.

Sam Bulte told the meeting,"I am not taking money from special interest groups. As you know, you can look at my returns. All of my election returns are noted, they are transparent. Ninety percent of my donations came from individuals. Ten percent came from organizations or corporations."

According to file-sharers, point by point examination of the MP's returns refutes this. Bulte does take lobbyists' money they say. One fileswapper told Netribution, "She raised 57 percent of her campaign money from entertainment interests, not the ten percent she claims."

"The important thing about a mix tape was it let you say things that provided a way of saying things that you might not otherwise be able to say in a face-to-face conversation.""

Ms Bulte also denied that organisations or corporations were involved in fund-raising events for her campaign.

"They are not hosting a fundraiser for me," she told the meeting. "A fundraiser is being held. Individuals are invited. Everyone is invited. It is self-funding. And yes, there will be artists there. It will be a celebation of my support for the arts community."

Fileswappers say this is also misleading, because the claim that her fundraiser isn't being
hosted by the entertainment industry is easily disproved and that Candadian entertainment industry execs and famous musicians are holding a $250-a-plate fundraising dinner for Bulte.
Her critics also point out that ironically, one of the musicians due to entertain at a fundraiser for Bulte, Margot Timmins, owed her early success to using low cost copy technology and fan-evangelism.

Timmins is frontwoman for Canadian indie-rock success story The Cowboy Junkies, who have made her a famous figure in the Canadian music scene for relied on mix-tapes and word
of mouth to build its audience. According to music insiders, the band produced its breakout album, The Trinity Session, by recording on a single microphone in the Church of the Holy Trinity. The Album cost about $250 to make, the same price as a single platter at the Bulte fundraising dinner-table.

One file-sharer comments, "This album was originally released on a small label and got its buzz based on word-of-mouth and thousands of mix tapes that teenagers -- myself
included -- made for each other."

Affectionados of sharing and swapping music say it is not about ripping off copyright holders, but a social phenomenon, the musical equivalent of sending a text message by mobile phone.

"Back then, one way to declare your love for a girl or guy was to make them a "mix tape" of songs and if you were particularly creative, you'd embellish the tape with an artistic
J-card, the cardboard liner that went into the cassette case. The important thing about a mix tape was it let you say things that provided a way of saying things that you might not otherwise be able to say in a face-to-face conversation."

 

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