Osgoode Hall Review of Law and Policy

Document Type


English Abstract

The entertainment software industry is one of the fastest growing market segment in the global economy, with Canada rapidly establishing itself as a world leader in the multi-billion dollar global video game industry. The employment opportunities in this industry, as well as its investments in research and technology are also significant. These investments are not without risk – in the highly competitive industry of video game production the chance of a video game being a commercial failure outweighs the chances of its success. Internet piracy of video game software has also undergone explosive growth and represents a significant problem for the entertainment software industry. Video game piracy drastically reduces the industry's capacity to sustain the enormously high creative costs associated with video game production, potentially leading to lost revenue, lost jobs, or worse. In an effort to protect their products from piracy, the video game industry has implemented various measures, including technological protection measures and other copy protection techniques, yet such measures are not fail-safe and are subject to circumvention. Compounding this problem, copyright law in Canada does not provide sufficient protection. Consequently, the Entertainment Software Association of Canada herein presents ways in which Canadian legislators can use copyright law to reduce piracy. Modernizing copyright law will, in turn, allow for a fair and vibrant marketplace and, in so doing, enhance both Canada‘s competitiveness and the public interest.