Tech giants like Google, Facebook, Uber and Airbnb have entered unchartered policy territory where ethics debates, grey areas and government relations are the daily norm. While the seeming nuisance of having to deal with all these new policy implications all at once may seem cumbersome, the economic benefits and progress that has been made far outweigh the work.
Focusing only on the cost increases associated with stronger (but still lagging) intellectual property protection for pharmaceutical innovators is simplistic and wrong. It is the balance of these costs and benefits that are the ultimate determinant of whether or not Canadians are better off, not just the post-2023 increase in drug costs to provincial governments, patients, and insurers.
It is Canada's challenge to ensure this country is attractive to those who are making the decisions on where to invest their dollars for the discovery and development of innovative new treatments. So while critics try to dismiss stronger IP as nothing more than a technique to pad the bottom line of a faceless corporation, for millions of Canadians it could be a matter of life and breath.
Canadian regulations clearly restrict access to new medical innovations by placing a general ban on their use until Health Canada completes duplicate reviews already undertaken (earlier and faster) by regulators in Europe and the U.S. Regulators in these jurisdictions bear responsibility for the health and safety of populations that dwarf Canada's population of less than 35 million. Canada's current approach imposes considerable delays on Canadians struggling with illness. A closer look suggests the delays did much more than cause needless discomfort.
If you need to build connections from scratch, be fearless. Pick up the phone. Write the letter or email. At conferences and social events, approach people and be approachable. Be clear about your value proposition and needs. Ask how you may help them, and ask for support. What's the worst that can happen? They politely decline.
Big Media lobbyists and unelected bureaucrats are holding closed-door meetings in Malaysia this week, as they continue secret talks on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) -- a highly secretive and extreme trade deal that includes extreme new copyright rules that could end the open Internet as we know it.
Here at OpenMedia.ca, we've already been hearing from Canadians outraged that our own Members of Parliament are still being denied access to the TPP text -- access that has now been granted to their counterparts in Washington D.C. We know that Canadians will not accept their Members of Parliament being kept in the dark
It has happened to all of us at some point. You have a great idea, and someone else likes it so much they "borrow" from you -- or outright steal. In the big picture, there is nothing wrong with this. In fact, if we were able to copyright ideas, creativity would be stifled. So what do you do when someone steals your ideas?
Imagine a world where you could receive a fine, and possibly be dragged before a judge, just for clicking on the wrong link, or where big media companies could demand your private online information. Here in Canada, our government looked at giving this kind of control to big media, yet the public opposition led them to decide against it.