Instructor(s): Richard Owens, Aaron Sawchuk

This course satisfies either the Perspective or the International/Comparative/Transnational
course requirement.

Note: The Blackboard program will be used for this course. Students must self-enrol in Blackboard as soon as confirmed in the course in order to obtain course information.

This course will examine the legal and policy issues that are challenging the producers and distributors of digital works in the entertainment, new media and software industries. The course will move beyond the black letter law to allow students to critically examine the socio-economic policy debates involving intellectual property rights in the digital economy. Course topics will include: the effects of digital rights management technologies on the dissemination of creative content and user rights; intellectual property protection for software; licensing strategies for computer software; open source software and other forms of massively distributed peer production; Canada’s implementation of the WIPO Internet treaties; and, the movement away from market-based compensation to collective licensing levies. The course will focus on the Canadian context, but will also draw heavily on international developments, particularly in the US and EU.

Class participation 15% (10% contributions to class discussion and 5% attendance) and a final paper of 5,000 to 6,500 words (20-25 pages) for the remaining 85%.

At a Glance

Second Term
Perspective course



25 JD


M: 2:10 - 4:00