Copyright Agency welcomes Government’s commitment to Australia’s creative industries

Copyright Advocacy

Copyright Agency and its members welcome the recognition of the benefits of statutory licensing system for education and government in the Australian Law Reform Commission’s report on copyright and the digital economy released last week.

The current system provides flexibility, choice and certainty for teachers and others who copy and share content, and fair compensation to content creators.

Copyright Agency’s Chief Executive Murray St Leger said, “We believe the statutory system is fair and extremely good value. It allows the copying and sharing of more than a billion and a half pages of content a year in Australian schools and universities.”

However, the ALRC’s controversial recommendation for a broad new exception has raised concerns amongst Copyright Agency’s members. “The proposed exception would risk reducing, rather than promoting, continued investment in content creation for Australian students and teachers as well as innovation in this digital economy,” Mr St Leger said.

Australia’s creators and publishers see the effects of similar exceptions in other countries – such as Google’s digitisation of millions of books in the US without fair compensation to authors, and the significant reduction in licensing for education resources in Canada – as detrimental to the future development of creative content whilst increasing uncertainty and possible litigation.

“Copyright Agency looks forward to engaging with the Government and our members and licensees in further discussions on how to achieve the best copyright environment for users and creators.”

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