AHRC Research Centre for Studies in Intellectual Property and Technology Law
Place of publication
Innovation is clearly essential for economic growth, cultural development and personal autonomy. Yet the relationship between innovation and copyright law in Australia is uncertain and perhaps overly restrictive. After the Australia-United States Free Trade Agreement Australia now has a copyright regime that can broadly be described as a lock up and lock out scheme. Whilst the Australian Government has paid lip service to innovation the Australian Copyright Act, which provides the essential legal infrastructure for innovation, now privileges the rights of owners over the interests of the public. In particular, the Copyright Act neglects to create a specific exception for technology innovation. If there is to be some coherence in Australia thinking with regards to innovation and copyright policy it is crucial that such an exception be created. Arguably, it is possible that such an exception can withstand the scrutiny of the three step test. At present the only ‘exception’ that can be said to exist is in the form of the limits of the authorisation liability provisions or the ISP safe harbour scheme. Australian copyright law needs something more substantial than that and needs for there to be a clear hierarchy between the exceptions and the liability provisions.
Field of Research
180199 Law not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective
970118 Expanding Knowledge in Law and Legal Studies