Canadian iPod Tax Approved

Dennis Faas's picture

The Copyright Board of Canada has given the OK to a tax being placed on iPods and other removable storage memory cards that could be used for private copying. The approval comes despite strong oppositions from both the Canadian Storage Media Alliance and the Retail Council of Canada.

Kim Furlong, Director of Federal Government Relations with the Retail Council, said that the tax is a dangerous approach.

"It's like going into Best Buy and learning the computer is a hundred dollars more just because the government thinks you might download music. It's effectively a hidden tax," she said. Furlong also added that the Council is looking into legal avenues to fight the tax. (Source:

Internet law expert Dr. Michael Geist also weighed in on the new tax. He noted the under-the-radar position that the Canadian federal government has remained in thus far. "The government has yet to play its hand on this issue, but with the prospect of an unpopular levy and mounting pressure for a Canadian fair use provision, it will have to take a stand sometime soon," he said. (Source:

Besides hitting up iPod users, the new tax may also affect other devices such as cell phones and computers.

"[The Recording Industry] expressed misgivings about the possibility that cellular phones and computers might end up being leviable. We see no inherent problem with this scenario," the board's decision read. "A thing that is ordinarily used by individual consumers to make private copies should not be excluded from the private copying regime for the sole reason that it has other uses. Indeed, all media that are currently subject to the levy can be used for purposes other than private copying." (Source:

Although the millions of Canadians affected by the new tax may be quite upset about it, there is certainly hope. The decision will likely be appealed, followed by more hearings on the issue. (Source:

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