Pirate Party Australia made a submission to the Australian Law Reform Commission on the issues paper “Copyright and the Digital Economy”. The paper examines the relationship between copyright and changing social practices, discussing the need for adjustment of the Copyright Act 1968 to greater reflect current trends.

Joining a chorus of submissions the Party called for a more appropriate copyright framework for modern Australia. Included among the recommendations made by Pirate Party Australia were the legalisation of backup copies, quotation rights for all kinds of creative material, a technology-neutral approach to reform, and a solution for the problem of orphan works. The submission also recognised the legitimacy of non-commercial/non-market transfers of culture, information and knowledge, recommending that allowances for such cultural transfers are respected by the copyright framework.

The ALRC will make their recommendations for copyright reform before December, 2013. The Commission will release a discussion paper in 2013, with a second call for submissions. Pirate Party Australia will also be making a submission at that time.

One comment on “Pirate Party’s ALRC Copyright Review Submission

  1. The question that should always be asked when determining copyright is “what is the difficulty of finding any breaches and collecting charges”.

    If the matter were civil, (i.e. the state police force were not employed to prosecute, and if evidence cannot be collected except by subpoena), then the ambit of copyright can be pretty much as it is. The copyright holder has a right to recover damages for breach of contract by the person who originally purchased the material.

    However if my taxes are to be expended to collect copyright fees for the benefit of a private copyright holder, then that legislation should provide a reasonable economic basis for such expenditure.

    It seems highly unlikely that teenagers downloading pirated songs will ever provide sufficient funds (by way of fines etc) to ever meet the cost of prosecution.

    To quote Bob Hawke. You do not enact legislation that you cannot enforce.

    In the same way, we should not enact copyright legislation where prosecutions are going to be at at a loss to the state.

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