APA Welcomes Attorney-General’s Support for Creators

Copyright Advocacy

The Australian Publishers Association today expressed concern at a proposal from the Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC) to introduce a ‘fair use’ exception to copyright laws.

The Association welcomed comments made by the Attorney-General, Senator the Hon George Brandis, when tabling the ALRC’s final report of its inquiry into Copyright and the Digital Economy that “It is the Government’s strong view that the fundamental principles of intellectual property law that protect the rights of content creators have not changed, merely because of the emergence of new media and platforms.”

Michael Gordon-Smith, Chief Executive of the Australian Publishers Association, said “ We welcome the Attorney-General’s support for those principles and we are pleased that in its final report the Commission has revised some of the more extreme suggestions it considered at earlier stages of its inquiry. However we are concerned at its recommendation for a broad so-called ‘fair use’ exception.

“The principles of copyright are independent of technology and fundamental to creative work. There are already provisions for ‘fair dealing’ in Australian copyright law. If the very broad exception proposed by the ALRC were adopted, it would risk substantial damage to businesses that invest in innovation and produce intellectual property in pursuit of uncertain and unlikely benefits.”

We look forward to considering the report in more detail and to contributing to the Government’s consideration of its proposals.

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