Tuesday, November 1, 2011

ALRC Copyright Issues

News this week that the Australian Attorney General is in the process of drafting the terms for a review of copyright law by the Australian Law Reform Commission. The draft terms of reference are to be released soon.

High on the list of priorities should be a new exception for sampling. It would be fair and reasonable for Australian copyright law to introduce a 5 second sampling right to allow for new creations to be made from existing works, especially after the Larikin Music Publishing case in which the band Men at Work were held liable for copyright infringement of the song Kookaburra Sits in the Old Gum Tree. Australia has the opportunity to lead the world by encouraging this art form and I for one would be pleased to see this included in the draft terms of reference.

The Copyright Council Expert Group recently released a paper in which areas in need of reform were highlighted - you can read the paper here. They suggest that further consideration should be given to:

• Non-commercial transformative use of copyright works
• Internet intermediary liability
• Orphan works; and
• Registration of copyright works

As soon as the draft terms of reference are released I will blog with any further information.

Further Reading
Copyright Council Expert Group, Directions in Copyright Reform in Australia (October 2011) <http://www.copyright.org.au/pdf/Copyright%20Council%20Expert%20Group%20-%20Paper%202011.pdf > at 1 November 2011

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