(23 December 2016) Australia’s Department of Communication and the Arts has released for public comment proposed changes to Australia’s copyright laws designed to modernise and improve their workability.
Public comment is invited.
The draft amendments to the Copyright Act 1968 will reduce the regulatory burden on the disability sector, libraries, archives and educational and cultural institutions. The changes will ensure these stakeholders and the wider Australian community have reasonable access to copyright material.
The changes will also simplify the Act, including by:
- Streamlining the educational statutory licence provisions to make it easier for educational institutions and copyright collecting societies to agree on licensing arrangements for the copying and communication of copyright material.
- Providing simple, clear rules for libraries, archives and key cultural institutions to make preservation copies of copyright material.
- Aligning the terms of protection for unpublished works with published works to give libraries, archives and other cultural institutions greater opportunities to use, and provide public access to, unpublished works.
- Providing search engines, universities and libraries with ‘safe harbour’ protection if they comply with conditions aimed at reducing online copyright infringement.
Comments on the draft amendments should be made by 5.00 pm (AEST) on Friday, 12 February 2016.
The exposure draft bill and more information on the proposed changes is available on the Have Your Say page.
The announcement in full is here.