Canadian DMCA Sparks Editing War on Wikipedia

Canadian Industry Minister Jim Prentice has been editing the Wikipedia entry that outlines the controversial Canadian version of the U.S. Digital Millennium Copyright Act, according to BoingBoing.

Edits to the entry reportedly focus on material that is critical of the Prentice's approach to introducing the bill, which has been regarded as extreme.

Prentice reportedly has ignored repeated calls for discussion with other ministers, Canadian technology and entertainment executives, citizens' rights groups, librarians, educators and other affected parties.

"While Industry Minister Jim Prentice has sought to project an air of unflappability around the outcry over the Canadian DMCA, it would appear that, behind the scenes, his staff is working overtime to eliminate any negative comments on Wikipedia," a BoingBoing post reported. "Prentice's Wikipedia entry has been anonymously amended multiple times over the past week, with regular attempts to remove any copyright criticism (as I post this, there is no reference to copyright). The IP address of most of the anonymous edits trace back to Industry Canada.

"For example, on May 27, someone from Industry Canada twice deleted the following: ‘Prentice has been responsible for developing new Canadian intellectual-property laws akin to the DMCA in the United States, partly due to pressure from U.S.-based advocacy groups. While he had promised to ‘put consumers first,' the draft legislation seems to cater strictly to industrial groups, and Prentice has now suggested consumer interests may not be heard for years. Indeed, Prentice has refused to talk to a group of protesters who went to his office to express their concern."