Australia Decides It's Okay For You To Copy Your CDs To Your iPod

from the how-nice-of-them dept

Just a week after the recording industry in the UK decided to tell the government it was ok with letting people copy legally purchased CDs to iPods, it appears the Australian government is getting ready to do the same for citizens down under. We first discussed this last year, but the government is preparing to change copyright laws to make certain exceptions, including those covering time shifting and format shifting. The law also allows exceptions for parody and satire, which is a nice addition. Of course, at the same time, the government felt the need to make certain concessions to the industry -- including stronger enforcement mechanisms and larger fines for those caught file sharing. The police will even be able to issue on-the-spot fines, like speeding tickets. Of course, what's odd is that this makes it sound like a give-and-take change: consumers get a few more rights in exchange for the recording industry getting more power to punish. However, that's a bad way of looking at it. Before this change, millions of people were probably "breaking the law" simply by listening to CDs they had legally purchased on their portable music players. The problem wasn't that consumers needed to be granted more rights, balanced by stronger protections for the industry, but that the original law was clearly no good -- turning millions of people into criminals for no good reason. It's great that they're fixing some problems in the law that no one was paying attention to anyway -- but it's not clear why those needed to come with stronger enforcement at the other end as well.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  •  
    identicon
    Dom, May 15th, 2006 @ 4:09am

    Finally! I shall no longer be a criminal!

     

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    ThePengwin, May 15th, 2006 @ 4:32am

    You know something funny?

    I told people and friends about this at school... and they thought that it was legal in australia.. i was the ONLY person in about 20 or so people, who i know have Mp3 players and rip cds all the time. australian law is scilenced in many areas people dont know...

     

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    Zarg, May 15th, 2006 @ 5:35am

    Don't get too excited

    It turns out there's a sting in the tail (of course!)
    See http://blogs.smh.com.au/mashup/archives//004567.html

    To quote from the Attorney-General's site...


    How long can I keep the recording?

    The recording must be deleted after one use. It will not be possible to use the recording over and over again.


    Can I make a collection of copied television and radio programs?

    No. You will not be able to burn a collection (or library) of your favourite programs on DVD or CD to keep. (It will be permitted to record a program on DVD or CD but only temporarily until you watch or listen to it for the first time.)

    ... and so on. Yeah, I can see this is REALLY gonna work.

     

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    Simon, May 15th, 2006 @ 6:16am

    Important point

    The new laws still retain enforcement powers within the police and do not give them out to extra judicial organisations (i.e. RIAA). Yes, there is civil proceedings but that still requires a "balance of probabilities" evidence rather than the much lower evidence level of US legislation.

     

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    just me, May 15th, 2006 @ 7:19am

    typo

    the title has a typo your -> you

     

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    Ignorance, May 15th, 2006 @ 7:37am

    Stop the

    If you cant spell or use proper grammar please don't post until you LEARN! Just me is correct about the title, and the second post has only 1 period. It's hard to sound intelligent when you cant spell correctly.

     

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      Meh, May 15th, 2006 @ 7:49am

      Re: Stop the

      'Ignorance', it is hard to seem intelligent when you miss out an apostrophe in "can'". One appears to be slightly foolish if they make an error in a post of such pedantry.

       

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    Steve Weeks, May 15th, 2006 @ 7:48am

    Rights? What Rights?

    Thanks, Lovely Stuff Mike, but only 95% for logic. What rights exactly? Is it really you "right" to duplicate a music impression to another medium? I am not saying it makes sense! But I would not claim that whatever seems "sensible to me" must therefore be my "right" and should therefore be legal - or become legalised. Was it ever legal to take your CDs to be heard in someone else's house? Are you allowed to listen to someone else's iPod? Well - I sure don't know. I recommend you buy a guitar and make your own music!

     

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    Curtis Edenfield, May 15th, 2006 @ 7:52am

    Screw The Goverment

    Are people and goverments really that STUPID!!!!! If I spent $400 to $500 on a new IPOD, I damn sure going to put the CD's and anyother media I chose on it!! Beside how could the goverment possibly hope to enforce such a law.

    Even if the media wasn't purchased legally, how would anybody know other than you.

     

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    Erarat, May 15th, 2006 @ 9:05am

    Illegal Recordings!!!

    I have never understood how a law like this works. So, it's okay to copy a vinyl record to tape but it's not okay to copy a cd to a hard drive? These laws seem capricious and random. It's not alright to share your music for free via the internet? While I realise that ignorance of the law wont let you off the hook I've got to say that I just don't get it.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 15th, 2006 @ 9:30am

    Whatever - tell you what, I WILL decide if I even bother buying CD's and/or a IPod.

    I refuse to buy Cd's anymore, it's just a damn rip-off, I'm sick of paying over inflated prices for music when there's technology out to bring music to consumers for a lot less cash. It's simply the recording companies still milking cash out of the consumers. So *up theirs* I simply won't buy them.

    I won't buy an IPOD either - too much DRM BS on them. If I'm not in control of what and how I listen to it, I'm not going to pay for it at all.

    I've got my share of MP3's - most of which I ripped off of CD's I already owned from a while back. Most of teh garbage from the recording industy simply isn't worth it - $15.00 for one good song on a CD? Yeah, whatever...

    Keep you music, Keep your IPODS, I have better places to spend my cash, and I can live just fine with the music I already own.

    The music industry can keep worrying about their bottom line - I won't contribute to it anymore.

    And yeah - after I buy something - it's MY RIGHT to do with it whatever I want to - afterall they ***SOLD*** it to me - they didn't RENT it to me - don't like it??? Don't sell it on the public market. What part of "selling" an item doesn't the music industry comprehend.

    So they are trying to "SELL" it to me and then *tell me what to do with it* - no way. I simply won't buy it - since it's obivous the CD's I "buy" really aren't mine anyway. It's more like a music Tax than a music sale now - and that's exactly what they want.

     

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    Erarat, May 15th, 2006 @ 5:00pm

    CDs - still worth buying . . . used that is

    I still purchase used cds from sites like half and ebay. Most cds have a higher bitrate than downloads. The way I do it is like this. Buy a $3 to $4 used cd, rip it and sell it for the same price I bought it for. Screw the music industry like they've been screwing us for lo these many years.

     

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    Mr Rat, May 15th, 2006 @ 7:12pm

    on the spot fines?

    I totally agree with the gist of this story - its not really a fair exchange given that the law was totally out of date, unfair and ignored by all. But what I would really like to know is how does one get an on the spot fine for file sharing, do they issue it to the IP address? do they come into your home and hope to catch you while you're doing it? And where does the money go - not to the artists, probably not even to the record labels - bet you anything the money goes straight to the government!

     

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    ElectricMayhem, May 16th, 2006 @ 4:34am

    copying music

    The more of these news items I read the more I am convinced that the human race is completely mad.

    We are blessed with the ability to do more than any other creature on the planet and we end up arguing and fighting about the most ridiculous things....

    Quite frankly, the end of the world can't come soon enough!!!!

     

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