Canberra
24 March 2017
Reporter: Barney Dixon
Safe harbour reforms dropped from Australian bill
Safe harbour reforms have been dropped from Australia’s Copyright Amendment Bill at its zero hour.

The bill, which introduces measures to streamline and simplify the copyright framework for the disability, education, library and archive sectors, while respecting the interests of copyright holders, had just received approval from Australia Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

Google and Facebook are among well-known tech companies backing the bill.

But proposed safe harbour amendments, which would have enhanced safe harbour protections for technology platforms, including search engines and social networks, were removed at the last minute.

Mitch Fifield, minister for communications, said the provisions were removed to “enable the government to further consider feedback received on this proposal whilst not delaying the passage of other important reforms”.

The rest of the bill will continue on to parliament for government approval.

The bill will enable fair access to copyrighted material in suitable formats. The government said that this “reflects the government’s commitment to improving accessibility to published material for persons with disability following the ratification of the Marrakesh Treaty”.

It also includes measures for students and educators to use copyrighted material in the digital education environment.

Rights holders groups and associations previously rejected the safe harbour amendments, arguing that a system of user rights would redress the imbalance of copyright.

In a joint statement, the Australian Society of Authors and the Australian Recording Industry Association said that while Australia’s copyright exceptions are “no longer fit for purpose”, the “introduction of a US-style ‘fair use’ exception and expansion of the safe harbour provisions will make it easier for these large organisations to use Australian content without fair payment and will mean less production of Australian stories”.

More Copyright news
The latest news from IPPro The Internet
Join Our Newsletter

Sign up today and never
miss the latest news or an issue again

Subscribe now
USTR targets China, India and Canada in 301 report
28 April 2017 | Washington DC | Reporter: Barney Dixon
China, India and Canada are sub-par intellectual property enforcers, according to the US Trade Representative’s 2017 Special 301 Report
Five million people in the UK use pirated TV streaming services
28 April 2017 | London | Reporter: Mark Dugdale
YouGov’s study found that 10 percent of the UK population currently have access to platforms such as illegal fully-loaded Kodi boxes and Amazon Fire TV chipped sticks
US House of Representatives passes copyright leadership bill
27 April 2017 | Washington DC | Reporter: Barney Dixon
The role of register of copyrights will become a presidential appointee
CJCH Solicitors secures new anti-piracy contracts
27 April 2017 | Cardiff | Reporter: Barney Dixon
The contracts bolster the firm’s new anti-piracy direction.
EPC calls on MEPs to support EU publishing right
26 April 2017 | Brussels | Reporter: Barney Dixon
EPC chair Christian Van Thillo said the right would secure a free and independent press for the foreseeable future.
Streaming booms as value gap bites
26 April 2017 | | Reporter: Mark Dugdale
The 5.9 percent rate of growth was the highest that IFPI has seen since it began tracking global sales in 1997. Total revenues for 2016 stood at $15.7 billion
RIAA lashes out at internet service provider
25 April 2017 | Texas | Reporter: Mark Dugdale
The Recording Industry Association of America has accused Grande Communications of copyright infringement, alleging the ISP refused to take meaningful against subscribers who repeatedly and illegally download music via BitTorrent networks