Current policy issues

Copyright issues are currently being reviewed in Australia and elsewhere.

Issue About More
Copyright Amendment Bill 2017 On 22 March 2017, the government introduced the Copyright (Disabilities and Other Measures) Bill 2017.The Bill implements a number of amendments supported by both creators and users of copyright content. webpage
Productivity Commission inquiry into Intellectual Property Arrangements On 20 December 2016, the government released the Productivity Commission’s final report on intellectual property arrangements. Submissions are due by 14 February, and the government has said it will respond by mid 2017.  

webpage

‘Fair use’ The Productivity Commission has recommended that Australia introduce a broad new copyright exception, based on the US ‘fair use’ exception. The recommendation is strongly opposed by content creators. PwC has estimated that the change could result in a loss of GDP of more than $1 billion. webpage

PwC CBA

Kim Williams calls for rejection of PC report

‘Safe harbour’ The Copyright Act has provisions, known as ‘safe harbour’, that limit the consequences of infringement for internet service providers if they take certain steps. The government has proposed extending the safe harbour provisions to other online service providers like Google, Facebook and eBay. Those changes are strongly opposed by content creators. Music Rights Australia submission
Parallel importation of books Book retailers sometimes need permission from Australian rightsholders to import books purchased overseas for sale in Australia. The Productivity Commission has recommended removal of the permission requirement to allow an ‘open market’. The recommendation is strongly opposed by authors, publishers and the Australian Booksellers Association. Australian Society of Authors submission

Australian Publshers Association submission

Extended collective licensing An extended collective licensing (ECL) framework enables a copyright management organisation (CMO) to get approval to ‘extend’ a licensing solution authorised by the CMO’s members to cover non-members’ content. ECL has been operating in Scandinavia for many years, has recently been adopted in a number of other countries (including the UK), and has been recommended by the US Copyright Office as a better solution than the ‘fair use’ exception for ‘mass digitisation’. webpage

3 April 2017

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