November 17, 2006 | By Fred von Lohmann

Australian Copyright "Reform" Looking Like Anything But

According to a recent release from the Australian Digital Alliance (a coalition of Australian universities, software companies, libraries, schools, museums, galleries and individuals), the Copyright Amendment Bill being rushed through the Australian legislature will be bad news not just for consumers, but also for innovators Down Under:

"What's most disturbing is that this Bill is so demonstrably anti-innovation, and for no good reason. U.S. fair use has given businesses like Google, iTunes and YouTube enough room to explore new business models without being suffocated at birth by outdated copyright laws. Without fair use, the next great Internet company is unlikely to come out of Australia," said ADA Chairman, Jamie Wodetzki. "Even worse, this Bill risks making ordinary Australians criminals, in some cases where they don't even know they're breaking copyright law."

Australia is being forced to rewrite its copyright law thanks to the recent U.S.-AUS Free Trade Agreement, and things are not looking good. For more, see our earlier post, and if you live in Australia, write your MP and Senator.

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