The Australian Law Reform Commission to review Copyright exceptions

March 30, 2012 |

Today the Attorney General announced a reference to the ALRC for an inquiryt into the operation of copyright exceptions for public comment. The draft terms of reference are found here. The submissions close on 27 April 2012.

The press release provides:

Attorney-General Nicola Roxon said the ALRC will consider whether the exceptions in the Federal Copyright Act are adequate and appropriate in the digital environment.

The draft terms of reference reflect the fact that technology is constantly evolving and testing the boundaries of copyright law    Ms Roxon said.

In our fast changing, technologically driven world, it important to ensure our copyright laws are keeping pace with change and able to respond to future challenges.

We want to ensure this review has enough scope to look at the key areas of copyright so w    re calling on stakeholders to provide us with their feedback before the ALRC begins its work

The draft terms of reference ask the ALRC to examine the adequacy and appropriateness of a broad range of exceptions in the Copyright Act, including time shifting.

The draft terms of reference also direct the ALRC to consider whether exceptions should allow the legitimate non-commercial use of copyright works for uses on the internet such as social networking.

The Government has appointed Professor Jill McKeough, University of Technology Sydney Dean of Law, to the ALRC as a Commissioner to lead the copyright inquiry.

As Australi    s foremost law reform institution, the ALRC is well suited to undertake this important work to ensure that the Copyright Act continues to be effective in the 21st century     Ms Roxon said.

An examination of the exceptions in the Copyright Act will ensure Australia can continue to take advantage of technology to drive economic and cultural development     Ms Roxon said.


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