Australia's government wants to know if its current anti-piracy laws are effective enough

Australia's current stance on internet piracy harkens back to 2015 when the government passed the Copyright Amendment (Online Infringement) Bill. With that backing, the Federal Court ordered a huge number of pirate sites to be blocked, including the likes of The Pirate Bay, in December 2016.

Since then, online copyright infringement has been reduced, the government has announced, but there are plenty more injunction applications pending in the court.

Before those hearings get underway, the Australian Government is keen to determine if the current anti-piracy mechanism is strong enough or not. The Department of Communications and the Arts is now looking for feedback on the efficacy of the site-blocking laws.

Reeling it in

On the current state of affairs, a consultation paper entitled Review of Copyright Online Infringement Amendment says, “Case law and survey data suggests the Online Infringement Amendment has enabled copyright owners to work with [internet service providers] to reduce large-scale online copyright infringement. So far, it appears that copyright owners and [ISPs] find the current arrangement acceptable, clear and effective.”

The government is open to suggestions from the public, with the paper adding, “The Department of Communications and the Arts is seeking views from stakeholders on the questions put forward in this paper. The Department welcomes single, consolidated submissions from organizations or parties, capturing all views on the Copyright Amendment (Online Infringement) Act 2015 (Online Infringement Amendment).”

Anyone interested in submitting to the consultation can do so until 5pm AEST on March 16, 2018, via the Department of Communications’ website.

Sharmishta Sarkar
Managing Editor (APAC)

While she's happiest with a camera in her hand, Sharmishta's main priority is being TechRadar's APAC Managing Editor, looking after the day-to-day functioning of the Australian, New Zealand and Singapore editions of the site, steering everything from news and reviews to ecommerce content like deals and coupon codes. While she loves reviewing cameras and lenses when she can, she's also an avid reader and has become quite the expert on ereaders and E Ink writing tablets, having appeared on Singaporean radio to talk about these underrated devices. Other than her duties at TechRadar, she's also the Managing Editor of the Australian edition of Digital Camera World, and writes for Tom's Guide and T3.