The Pencil Guy: Hourann's illogical blog

Tell the Feds you want freer copyright law!

Now that exams are over, I shall indulge in a little last-minute political activism.

Current Australian copyright law says it’s illegal to record a TV program to watch later, or copy a song from a CD to an iPod. Having finally realised this, the Government has called for submissions to a review of this law (background at and EFA). Thus, I encourage everybody to read the discussion paper and follow the included submission instructions. The deadline is July 1, which is unfortunately very close.

If you’re too busy to read the paper (or can’t be bothered wading through its 50 pages), I have a Plan B. Just for folks like you, I’ve made a standard submission that you can slap your name on and e-mail to the Attorney General’s department to say you want to be legally able to make copies of music and movies that you bought legitimately. In only a few minutes, you too can contribute to giving us less-sucky copyright law!

  1. Download the submission in Word, RTF, or format.
  2. Put your name and postal address at the bottom. They won’t mail you anything, but it proves you’re a real person.
  3. Edit anything you want. Delete things you disagree with, or expand on points you particularly care about. I’ve tried to be balanced, but if you want to, let your passionate anti-media-company feelings run wild!
  4. Save your work as a PDF or Word document, and attach it to an e-mail sent to michelle DOT tippett AT ag DOT gov DOT au being sure to mention that it’s for the Review of Copyright & Fair Use.

To repeat, the deadline is July 1 — that’s this Friday — so get cracking! It really doesn’t take much effort ;-)

  1. [...] An interesting copyright-related story: a few months ago, when the federal Attorney-General was calling for submissions for a review of ‘fair use’ in Australian copyright law, one of the options presented was the introduction of a levy on blank media aimed at compensating copyright owners for illegal copies made with those media. Fortunately, very few of the submissions supported that idea (and indeed, most called for wide ‘fair use’ rights). [...]

  2. [...] Some months ago, I posted about proposed changes to copyright law that would have made life much less painful for copyright consumers (i.e. just about everyone) in this country. I only just found out that the Attorney-General today announced legal changes as a result of that review. There’s an excellent (and detailed) summary over at LawFont. [...]

Care to leave a comment?