Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Internet Party to Lead Copyright Law Reform

June 25, 2014

Internet Party to Lead Copyright Law Reform

People wanting to watch TV blockbusters such as Game of Thrones at the same time as the rest of the world will benefit from changes to copyright law proposed today by the Internet Party.

Along with a raft of reforms for the outdated, patched-up Copyright Act, the Internet Party’s draft Copyright and Open Research Policy promises to get rid of any potential legal liability Kiwis face if they try to get around a practice called “geo-blocking”.

The entertainment industry uses geo-blocking to split the world into convenient zones so it can dictate when films, TV programmes and other entertainment content are released.

“A Kiwi who wants to watch the latest season of first run TV shows like Games of Thrones, for example, shouldn’t be forced to jump through hoops to access what should be legally and easily available online,” says Internet Party leader Laila Harré.

“It’s a ridiculous situation in this day and age. A key issue is that legal opinion is still divided in New Zealand on whether this is breaking the current law, so we will remove any doubt by making it clear that there is no legal liability on people who circumvent geo-blocking to access non-infringing digital content from overseas.”

Ms Harré said the Copyright Act was no longer up with the play and needed to be overhauled as a priority.

“The Internet and digital technologies have completely changed the landscape since the Copyright Act came into effect in 1994. No amount of tinkering can change its paper and printing origin. In a digital age it’s now an anachronism. We will make it fit for our digital future, with the first step being an independent review of first principles to guide future lawmaking and without making the assumption that copyright is the best, only or even necessary way to effectively promote creativity and new creative works.”

The Internet Party’s focus will seek to boost availability of legal content online so that there are options for getting it easily at reasonable cost, without delay, and in multiple formats.

“To achieve this we will talk with local and overseas copyright owners and other interested parties to identify and remove barriers. It is time for a first principles review of copyright. As is the case with the parallel importing of physical goods, we will allow for the parallel importation of non-infringing digital goods, services and content.”

Copyright infringement was, first and foremost, related to the issue of availability.

“Some excellent work has been done by some copyright owners and content providers to make good legal options available to New Zealanders. But there’s still a long way to go, especially for some types of content such as globally popular first run television shows broadcast overseas but not available in New Zealand for weeks or months, if at all.

“Other countries have moved ahead in assessing the changes required to set balanced copyright rules in a digital age. But here in New Zealand, the only change we’ve seen in the past six years has been the ‘three strikes’ peer-to-peer filesharing amendment.

“This Government has allowed New Zealand to fall behind globally in keeping our law up-to-date, so we will initiate a range of amendments to the Copyright Act as a priority, including the introduction of a general ‘fair use’ provision, the full range of ‘fair dealing’ exceptions and changes to the three strikes law.”

Another important element of the policy is the right of public access to taxpayer-funded research.

“The Internet was developed as a way to share and develop knowledge,” said Ms Harré. “Access to knowledge is a fundamental tenet of democracy and social fairness. We will ensure that all taxpayer-funded research is available to the public to freely access and reuse, unless prohibited under any required ethical consent or approval, with a taskforce created to oversee the process fairly and responsibly.”

The Internet Party’s draft Copyright and Open Research policy is now online for review and discussion on the policy forum. The work-in-progress policy document is available here.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Pacific Spying: Mass Surveillance Of NZers Confirmed By Former GCSB Director - Contradicting PM John Key

Scoop Editor Alastair Thompson Reports: Yesterday morning former GCSB Director Sir Bruce Ferguson confirmed mass surveillance of New Zealnders in the Pacific is taking place as revealed in the latest Snowden leaks investigated by Nicky Hager. In 2013 John Key told press gallery reporters that in the event mass surveillance was found have been conducted by the GCSB, he and the director of the GCSB - his childhood friend Ian Fletcher - would resign. As the controversy deepens a year and half later Fletcher has already resigned. But will Key? More>>

Gordon Campbell: Legal Fudging Of The GCSB Revelations

As many have noted, the Hager/Snowden revelations of the spying by our security agencies on our Pacific neighbours and allies is a virtual re-run of the pre-election debate. It is a situation where the government (a) stonewalls, (b) baldly asserts that mass surveillance is not occurring despite the Snowden evidence that it is, and (c) claims that the GCSB actions were lawful. Yet as Greens Co-Leader Russel Norman says, this can be true only if the legislation passed last year by the Key government has made the mass surveillance of New Zealanders – and the related handing over of their private data to the NSA – lawful. More>>

Latest:

 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

Women's Day, March 8: It’s Time For Men To Step Up For Gender Equality

UN Women is launching the HeForShe campaign in New Zealand at the International Women's Day Parliamentary Breakfast, and is calling on New Zealand men — including politicians and community and sports leaders — to show their commitment to gender equality by signing up to this global campaign. More>>

ALSO:

Teina Pora Wins Appeal: Gordon Campbell On The Privy Council Decision

The quashing of the convictions of Teina Pora for the rape and murder of Susan Burdett in 1992 has shone a spotlight once again on a major gap in the New Zealand justice system... More>>

ALSO:

Urgent Bill Planned: MP Pay Rises To Match Public Service

Prime Minister John Key today announced an overhaul of the Remuneration Authority Act, tying MP salaries to those of the wider public sector, which will be passed under urgency. More>>

ALSO:

PM's Press Conference: MP Pay Rises, Solid Energy, Iraq

Prime Minister John Key answered questions in his Post-Cabinet press conference about the Iraq deployment, Solid Energy and National’s decision to overhaul the Remuneration Authority Act. More>>

ALSO:

Worksafe: MSD Charged Over Work And Income Ashburton Shooting

WorkSafe NZ has laid one charge against the Ministry of Social Development (MSD) in relation to the shooting at the MSD Ashburton office on 1 September 2014 in which two Work and Income staff were killed and another was injured. More>>

ALSO:

Iraq: Ex-Hostage Says Government Not Putting NZers, Iraqis First

Harmeet Singh Sooden is travelling to Iraq in the coming weeks to work with Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) on a short-term assignment. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news