Saturday, May 24, 2008

Doesn’t Customs Have Better Things To Do?

Non-intellectual Property

According to an article in today’s National Post, a new Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) in the works could turn border guards and other public security personnel into copyright police. Officers would be mandated with checking laptops, iPods and even cellular phones for content that “infringes” on copyright laws, such as ripped CDs and movies.

How customs officials will determine what constitutes infringing content isn’t clear. Under the proposed agreement any content that may have been copied from a DVD or digital video recorder would be open for scrutiny by officials — even if it was copied legally. A leaked document indicates that anyone found with infringing content in their possession would be open to a fine and/or the confiscation or destruction of their computer, iPod, etc.

Well this certainly sounds like an efficient use of the CBSA’s time and effort. Thank goodness there aren’t more critically important threats they should be dealing with. Not to mention the salutary effect it should have on the processing of passengers.