Inside the Australian and New Zealand book industry

Image. Advertisement:

Bill to simplify copyright materials for libraries, education and people with disabilities passes Parliament

A Bill amending the Copyright Act 1968 to simplify the use of copyright materials for libraries, educational institutions, archives and people with disabilities passed Federal Parliament on 15 June.

From 1 January 2019 millions of historical manuscripts held by national, state and territory libraries and other libraries and archives will enter the public domain. The Bill also simplifies and updates provisions that control how libraries and archives preserve materials.

In 2015, the Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA) lobby group FAIR launched its Cooking for Copyright campaign calling for immediate reform to the ‘muddled copyright law’.

In a statement, ALIA welcomed the introduction of ‘important copyright reforms’ and said it is ‘delighted that ALIA members’ efforts to lobby has led to real change’.

Vision Australia said in a statement that the Bill’s amendments ‘knocks down the last few barriers that have been blocking the Marrakesh Treaty from being implemented effectively in Australia’. As previously reported by Books+Publishing, the federal government signed the Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons who are Blind, Visually Impaired, or otherwise Print Disabled in 2014.

‘The Treaty allows organisations that represent print disability communities, in ratified countries, to make accessible copies of works without having to ask permission from the rights-holders,’ said Vision Australia general manager for advocacy Karen Knight. ‘It also permits the cross-border exchange of accessible format books both between organisations and directly from an organisation to an individual.’

As previously reported by Books+Publishing, the federal government first proposed the amendments in early 2016.


Category: Local news