Friday, February 14, 2014

Warman and National Post Drop Appeals - Good News for Canadian Copyright Law

Just in time for  for Valentine's Day, though they probably didn't intend it that way, the National Post and Richard Warman have discontinued their appeals from the decision from Justice Rennie. These were to have been heard on February 19, 2014 here in Ottawa. This is a very pleasant surprise and lets Justice Rennie's decision stand. It will be interesting to see what happens with costs, since this went down to the wire. Such a last minute discontinuance of an appeal is very unusual. Here's what was at issue in the appeal:
  • what is substantial?
  • how does fair dealing apply in the context of news reporting, blogs, and critical comment?
  • when the limitation period begins to run for material posted online?, and
  • whether there can be copyright in a headline?
Here's what I've said about this in the past, which has resulted in some very capable interveners and counsel weighing in on this. The outcome is anticlimactic but very satisfactory in the sense that a good trial decision now stands as good law.

Here's the Notices of Discontinuance.


PS - here are the substantive memoranda filed by the parties and the interveners:

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