Paying the piper

A 25th anniversary celebration of Public Lending Rights for writers. PLR campaigners (l to r) Ken McGoogan, Andreas Schroeder, Anna Porter and Alan Cumyn (chair of The Writers' Union of Canada posed Thursday, May 26, 2011, at the Toronto Reference Library.
A 25th anniversary celebration of Public Lending Rights for authors. PLR campaigners (l to r) Ken McGoogan, Andreas Schroeder, Anna Porter and Alan Cumyn (chair of The Writers' Union of Canada) posed Thursday, May 26, 2011, at the Toronto Reference Library. (Photo courtesy Michelle Legault.)

Imagine for a moment, a shopper comes into your retail store. The shopper browses along a couple of aisles, pulls a few items from the shelves or the racks, puts them in a shopping basket. Then he leaves your store without paying a penny. Or, imagine a client enters your office. You’re a doctor, a dentist, a lawyer, an accountant or anyone offering a professional service. How likely is it that client will leave your office without squaring his account? Not very likely.

If the shopper or client did, you’d consider it shoplifting or theft and you’d probably call the police.