Sun, 30 Jan 2005

Time for Fair Use

There's a great little article in Friday's "The Age" about the the need for decent fair-use clauses in Australian copyright law. It couldnt get much simpler - under current law, it is illegal to tape a show off the TV to watch it later. Given that pretty much everyone does this, it's a good indication that things need to change.

The article was written by the Secretary of Electronic Frontiers Australia, an organisation I like to promote at every opportunity - including this one ;-)

Some people have pointed out that there is a clause in the Copyright Act (1968) granting limited copying rights to television and other broadcasts, but it's not enough to make it actually legal. And it doesnt cover emerging devices such as personal MP3 players where you're violating copyright by ripping your CDs to MP3 for playback. It's well and truly time for some basic, sensible, non-special-case fair use rights for the Australian public.

What do we do about it? Maybe you missed the link I gave you above :-). Joining the EFA or at least checking out their website would be a good place to start.