Reforms to the Copyright Board of Canada

The Copyright Board of Canada establishes royalties for the use of copyrighted content in a broad range of areas where the administration of such copyright is entrusted to a collective management organization. This includes music streaming, the public performance of music, educational copying and the retransmission of television signals.

Regulatory changes

As the final part of government-led reforms to address the issue of delays in the Copyright Board's decision-making processes, the Government of Canada has enacted the Time Limits in Respect of Matters Before the Copyright Board Regulations.

The regulations specify time limits and related rules for the Board's proceedings and decision making.

The regulations were developed following extensive consultations undertaken by the government to gather stakeholder input on potential legislative and regulatory changes to improve the timeliness and predictability of the Board's decision-making processes, as well as close consultation with the Copyright Board itself.

Legislative changes

Several consultations and recent research have identified the need for timely decisions regarding royalty rates for the use of copyrighted content, particularly in light of rapid technological advances. The Government of Canada took comprehensive action through Budget 2018 to tackle delays, with a 30% increase in financial resources for the Copyright Board of Canada, accompanied by legislative amendments. Together with new appointments at the Board, these measures have set a new course for decision making.

All in all, the reforms seek to ensure that royalty rates are determined faster and with more certainty while continuing to protect the public interest. These reforms will have positive results for rights holders and users alike by reducing legal costs for all parties involved and facilitating more timely Board decisions that will provide copyright-based markets with the certainty they need to thrive. The reforms will better position our creators and cultural entrepreneurs to make, produce and reinvest in high-quality Canadian content and will support strong, vibrant and healthy creative industries for the benefit of all Canadians.

Consultation on options for reform to the Copyright Board of Canada

The Government of Canada held a consultation on options for reform to the Copyright Board of Canada from August 9, 2017, to September 29, 2017. This consultation engaged stakeholders and the public on potential technical changes to the legislative and regulatory framework to make the decision-making processes of the Copyright Board more efficient.