Sunday, February 14, 2010
Friday, February 12, 2010
There has been no shortage of interesting copyright judgments in the last week. In addition to the iiNet decision, there has been the decision of Larrikin Music Publishing Pty Ltd v EMI Songs Australia Pty Limited  FCA 29 (where the band Men At Work was found to have infringed Larrikin's copyright in the children's song 'Kookaburra Sits in the Old Gum Tree', by using the flute riff in their famous 'Down Under' song), and on Monday, in Telstra Corporation Limited v Phone Directories Company Pty Ltd  FCA 44, a single judge of the Federal Court held that copyright does not subsist in Telstra's Yellow Pages and White Pages directories (choosing to follow IceTV rather than Desktop Marketing).
These are all important decisions, and I have every intention of getting to them (for reading and blogging in detail) as soon as I can. In the meantime, if you are interested in reading some updates and discussions, I'd recommend viewing Nic Suzor's blog on the iiNet decision (1, 2, and 3) and Warwick Rothnie's post on the Telstra decision.
I am happy to say that I played a small role (together with Nic Suzor and Irene Graham) in putting this submission together. I hope that it will have some impact in helping to make the proposed filter (if it is indeed implemented) more transparent, and as a result, the government more accountable to the Australian people as far as internet filtering goes.
Thursday, February 4, 2010
- the infringements occurred as a result of use of the BitTorrent system, not the internet, and iiNet did not control the BitTorrent system;
- iiNet did not have a relevant power to prevent the infringements occurring; and
- iiNet did not sanction, approve or countenance copyright infringement.
Wednesday, January 6, 2010
This post is hugely late, but I've only just realised that I never actually posted notice of the Government 2.0 Taskforce final report, or the project report that I did with Professor Anne Fitzgerald for the Government 2.0 Taskforce.
So, without further ado, here are the relevant links:
The final report of the Government 2.0 Taskforce, entitled, "Engage: Getting on with Government 2.0" (December 2009) is available here. The report makes a number of important recommendations, including:
Recommendation 6: Make public sector information open, accessible and reusable
6.1 By default Public Sector Information19 (PSI) should be:
- based on open standards
- easily discoverable
- freely reusable and transformable.
6.2 PSI should be released as early as practicable and regularly updated to ensure its currency is maintained.
6.3 Consistent with the need for free and open re-use and adaptation, PSI released should be licensed under the Creative Commons BY standard as the default...
The Government 2.0 Taskforce commissioned a number of projects to assist them with examining various areas of policy relating to their government 2.0 agenda. I assisted Professor Anne Fitzgerald with Project 4: Copyright Law and Intellectual Property. Our project report is available here. Here is the summart of the project report, as provided on the Government 2.0 Taskforce website:
Professor Anne Fitzgerald examined the broad policy rationale for copyright in relation to public sector information and found that there is a strong case to realign Commonwealth copyright policy based on the principles of open access and re-use which would facilitate complex flows of information between and within the public and private sectors. The report stated that this could be achieved without the need for significant changes to copyright legislation by repositioning crown copyright to enable rather than restrict re-use; adopting copyright management practices appropriate to the Web 2.0 environment (e.g. standardised open licenses which provide clear statements of users’ permissions); and providing clearer guidance to agencies about the use of open licenses, and the meaning of ‘publication’ in the Copyright Act.