The opinions expressed in this editorial are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Decima Reports.The Radiocommunications Act is a poor substitute for effective intellectual property legislation. The Act was first used in 1997 as the most efficient means to shut down companies that sell DBS satellite equipment, and arrange U.S. mailing addresses for Canadians that want to receive unauthorized U.S.channels. The Federal Court of Canada ruled in 1997 that the Act clearly prohibits anyone from decoding an encrypted signal "unless you have a lawful right to do so." In December, B.C. Supreme Court Justice Donald Brenner challenged that interpretation. He concluded that the Radiocomm Act was meant to stop hackers, not individuals who simply send their money to a U.S. company, rather than Bell ExpressVu or Star Choice. Brenner's ruling shocked Canadian rights holders because it effectively legalized grey market satellite TV. The U.S. recently passed the Digital Millennium Copyright Act which provides civil and criminal protection to copyright owners who's rights are violated, through whatever technology. The legislation was introduced to honour that country's obligation under two 1996 World Intellectual Property Organi-zation treaties. Canada was also a signatory to those treaties, but has yet to introduce parallel protections for IP owners under Canadian law. The iCraveTV.com issue further illustrates the need for stronger IP protection. The rights holders in that case decided it was easier to get an injunction in a U.S. court because of tougher copyright laws south of the border. When it comes to grey marketeering, however, the federal government may have more to worry about than properly worded statutes. By threatening to pull the plug on people's C-band satellite dishes, the rights issue moves from the courts to the living rooms of Canadian television viewers. Whether legal or not, these viewers will not like it when their HBO signal goes black. And they'll remember it next time they go to the polls.