Download the list of Questions as a PDF

Download the list of Questions as a RTF

The Inquiry

Question 1.  The ALRC is interested in evidence of how Australia’s copyright law is affecting participation in the digital economy. For example, is there evidence about how copyright law:

  1. affects the ability of creators to earn a living, including through access to new revenue streams and new digital goods and services;
  2. affects the introduction of new or innovative business models;
  3. imposes unnecessary costs or inefficiencies on creators or those wanting to access or make use of copyright material; or
  4. places Australia at a competitive disadvantage internationally.          

Guiding principles for reform

Question 2.  What guiding principles would best inform the ALRC’s approach to the Inquiry and, in particular, help it to evaluate whether exceptions and statutory licences in the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) are adequate and appropriate in the digital environment or new exceptions are desirable?

Caching, indexing and other internet functions         

Question 3.  What kinds of internet-related functions, for example caching and indexing, are being impeded by Australia’s copyright law?

Question 4.  Should the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) be amended to provide for one or more exceptions for the use of copyright material for caching, indexing or other uses related to the functioning of the internet? If so, how should such exceptions be framed?

Cloud computing

Question 5.   Is Australian copyright law impeding the development or delivery of cloud computing services?

Question 6.  Should exceptions in the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) be amended, or new exceptions created, to account for new cloud computing services, and if so, how?

Copying for private use        

Question 7.  Should the copying of legally acquired copyright material, including broadcast material, for private and domestic use be more freely permitted?

Question 8.  The format shifting exceptions in the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) allow users to make copies of certain copyright material, in a new (eg, electronic) form, for their own private or domestic use. Should these exceptions be amended, and if so, how? For example, should the exceptions cover the copying of other types of copyright material, such as digital film content (digital-to-digital)? Should the four separate exceptions be replaced with a single format shifting exception, with common restrictions?

Question 9.  The time shifting exception in s 111 of the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) allows users to record copies of free-to-air broadcast material for their own private or domestic use, so they may watch or listen to the material at a more convenient time. Should this exception be amended, and if so, how? For example:

  1. should it matter who makes the recording, if the recording is only for private or domestic use; and
  2. should the exception apply to content made available using the internet or internet protocol television?

Question 10.   Should the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) be amended to clarify that making copies of copyright material for the purpose of back-up or data recovery does not infringe copyright, and if so, how?

Online use for social, private or domestic purposes

Question 11.   How are copyright materials being used for social, private or domestic purposes—for example, in social networking contexts?

Question 12.   Should some online uses of copyright materials for social, private or domestic purposes be more freely permitted? Should the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) be amended to provide that such use of copyright materials does not constitute an infringement of copyright? If so, how should such an exception be framed?

Question 13.   How should any exception for online use of copyright materials for social, private or domestic purposes be confined? For example, should the exception apply only to (a) non-commercial use; or (b) use that does not conflict with normal exploitation of the copyright material and does not unreasonably prejudice the legitimate interests of the owner of the copyright?

Transformative use               

Question 14.   How are copyright materials being used in transformative and collaborative ways—for example, in ‘sampling’, ‘remixes’ and ‘mashups’. For what purposes—for example, commercial purposes, in creating cultural works or as individual self-expression?

Question 15.   Should the use of copyright materials in transformative uses be more freely permitted? Should the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) be amended to provide that transformative use does not constitute an infringement of copyright? If so, how should such an exception be framed?     

Question 16.   How should transformative use be defined for the purposes of any exception? For example, should any use of a publicly available work in the creation of a new work be considered transformative?

Question 17.   Should a transformative use exception apply only to: (a) non-commercial use; or (b) use that does not conflict with a normal exploitation of the copyright material and does not unreasonably prejudice the legitimate interests of the owner of the copyright?            

Question 18.   The Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) provides authors with three ‘moral rights’: a right of attribution; a right against false attribution; and a right of integrity. What amendments to provisions of the Act dealing with moral rights may be desirable to respond to new exceptions allowing transformative or collaborative uses of copyright material?

Libraries, archives and digitisation         

Question 19.   What kinds of practices occurring in the digital environment are being impeded by the current libraries and archives exceptions?

Question 20.   Is s 200AB of the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) working adequately and appropriately for libraries and archives in Australia? If not, what are the problems with its current operation?

Question 21.   Should the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) be amended to allow greater digitisation and communication of works by public and cultural institutions? If so, what amendments are needed?

Question 22.   What copyright issues may arise from the digitisation of Indigenous works by libraries and archives?

Orphan works                       

Question 23.   How does the legal treatment of orphan works affect the use, access to and dissemination of copyright works in Australia?

Question 24.   Should the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) be amended to create a new exception or collective licensing scheme for use of orphan works? How should such an exception or collective licensing scheme be framed?

Data and text mining            

Question 25.   Are uses of data and text mining tools being impeded by the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth)? What evidence, if any, is there of the value of data mining to the digital economy?

Question 26.   Should the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) be amended to provide for an exception for the use of copyright material for text, data mining and other analytical software? If so, how should this exception be framed?

Question 27.   Are there any alternative solutions that could support the growth of text and data mining technologies and access to them?

Educational institutions                  

Question 28.   Is the statutory licensing scheme concerning the copying and communication of broadcasts by educational and other institutions in pt VA of the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) adequate and appropriate in the digital environment? If not, how should it be changed? For example, should the use of copyright material by educational institutions be more freely permitted in the digital environment?

Question 29.   Is the statutory licensing scheme concerning the reproduction and communication of works and periodical articles by educational and other institutions in pt VB of the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) adequate and appropriate in the digital environment? If not, how should it be changed?

Question 30.   Should any uses of copyright material now covered by the statutory licensing schemes in pts VA and VB of the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) be instead covered by a free-use exception? For example, should a wider range of uses of internet material by educational institutions be covered by a free-use exception? Alternatively, should these schemes be extended, so that educational institutions pay licence fees for a wider range of uses of copyright material?

Question 31.   Should the exceptions in the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) concerning use of copyright material by educational institutions, including the statutory licensing schemes in pts VA and VB and the free-use exception in s 200AB, be otherwise amended in response to the digital environment, and if so, how?

Crown use of copyright material             

Question 32.  Is the statutory licensing scheme concerning the use of copyright material for the Crown in div 2 of pt VII of the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) adequate and appropriate in the digital environment? If not, how should it be changed?

Question 33.  How does the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) affect government obligations to comply with other regulatory requirements (such as disclosure laws)?

Question 34.  Should there be an exception in the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) to allow certain public uses of copyright material deposited or registered in accordance with statutory obligations under Commonwealth or state law, outside the operation of the statutory licence in s 183?

Retransmission of free-to-air broadcasts          

Question 35.  Should the retransmission of free-to-air broadcasts continue to be allowed without the permission or remuneration of the broadcaster, and if so, in what circumstances?

Question 36   Should the statutory licensing scheme for the retransmission of free-to-air broadcasts apply in relation to retransmission over the internet, and if so, subject to what conditions—for example, in relation to geoblocking?

Question 37.  Does the application of the statutory licensing scheme for the retransmission of free-to-air broadcasts to internet protocol television (IPTV) need to be clarified, and if so, how?

Question 38.  Is this Inquiry the appropriate forum for considering these questions, which raise significant communications and competition policy issues?

Question 39.   What implications for copyright law reform arise from recommendations of the Convergence Review?

Statutory licences in the digital environment             

Question 40.   What opportunities does the digital economy present for improving the operation of statutory licensing systems and access to content?

Question 41.   How can the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) be amended to make the statutory licensing schemes operate more effectively in the digital environment—to better facilitate access to copyright material and to give rights holders fair remuneration?

Question 42.   Should the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) be amended to provide for any new statutory licensing schemes, and if so, how?

Question 43.   Should any of the statutory licensing schemes be simplified or consolidated, perhaps in light of media convergence, and if so, how? Are any of the statutory licensing schemes no longer necessary because, for example, new technology enables rights holders to contract directly with users?

Question 44.   Should any uses of copyright material now covered by a statutory licence instead be covered by a free-use exception?

Fair dealing exceptions         

Question 45.    The Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) provides fair dealing exceptions for the purposes of:

  1. research or study;
  2. criticism or review;
  3. parody or satire;
  4. reporting news; and
  5. a legal practitioner, registered patent attorney or registered trade marks attorney giving professional advice.

What problems, if any, are there with any of these fair dealing exceptions in the digital environment?

Question 46.    How could the fair dealing exceptions be usefully simplified?

Question 47.    Should the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) provide for any other specific fair dealing exceptions? For example, should there be a fair dealing exception for the purpose of quotation, and if so, how should it apply?

Other free-use exceptions

Question 48.    What problems, if any, are there with the operation of the other exceptions in the digital environment? If so, how should they be amended?

Question 49.    Should any specific exceptions be removed from the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth)?

Question 50.    Should any other specific exceptions be introduced to the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth)?

Question 51.    How can the free-use exceptions in the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) be simplified and better structured?

Fair use 

Question 52.    Should the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) be amended to include a broad, flexible exception? If so, how should this exception be framed? For example, should such an exception be based on ‘fairness’, ‘reasonableness’ or something else?

Question 53.    Should such a new exception replace all or some existing exceptions or should it be in addition to existing exceptions?

Contracting out  

Question 54.    Should agreements which purport to exclude or limit existing or any proposed new copyright exceptions be enforceable?

Question 55.    Should the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) be amended to prevent contracting out of copyright exceptions, and if so, which exceptions?