Australian Government Plans To Continue Holding Secret Anti-Piracy 'Stakeholder' Meetings With Industry; No Consumer Advocates Allowed

from the ridiculous dept

You may recall that the Australian government has been holding a series of secret “anti-piracy” negotiations between the entertainment industry and ISPs. When more information was sought via a Freedom of Information request, the Australian Attorney General sent a fully redacted document, claiming that it was “not in the public interest” to reveal how the industries and the government would be screwing over the public (slight paraphrase). This, alone, is ridiculous. However, getting even more ridiculous is that, following the High Court ruling saying that ISPs are not liable for infringement by their users, the AG has said such meetings will continue:

The Federal Government would “closely examine” the High Court’s judgement in the long-running copyright infringement case won by ISP iiNet over film and TV studios this morning, Federal Attorney-General Nicola Roxon said this afternoon, as she noted that closed-door talks held by her department with industry on the matter would continue.

Thankfully, iiNet’s CEO seems to realize that with this ruling in hand, he doesn’t need to give in to industry blackmail. While noting that the meetings had been “been going around in circles,” in the wake of the High Court ruling, iiNet CEO Michael Malone announced at a press conference that “My preference would be to walk away now.” If only it were that easy.

Filed Under: , ,
Companies: iinet

Rate this comment as insightful
Rate this comment as funny
You have rated this comment as insightful
You have rated this comment as funny
Flag this comment as abusive/trolling/spam
You have flagged this comment
The first word has already been claimed
The last word has already been claimed
Insightful Lightbulb icon Funny Laughing icon Abusive/trolling/spam Flag icon Insightful badge Lightbulb icon Funny badge Laughing icon Comments icon

Comments on “Australian Government Plans To Continue Holding Secret Anti-Piracy 'Stakeholder' Meetings With Industry; No Consumer Advocates Allowed”

Subscribe: RSS Leave a comment
70 Comments
Anonymous Coward says:

Love the way your blogs always contain at least one ‘slight paraphrase’, which is invariably a slur on someone you don’t agree with.
Claiming ‘secret meetings’ is also a loaded phrase.
I believe it’s been normal practice for the Australian Labor government to hold closed session meetings with industry stakeholders when consulting on changes to any law.
Pirates are breaking current law, so why they would be worthy of a place at the negotiating table I’m not sure.
In the meantime, Aussie ISP’s are at the table. So unless you think the ISP’s having won in the courts, are too weak, then I’m sure they are perfectly capable of representing themselves and their customers in this negotiation process.

Anonymous Coward says:

Contact the Attorney General

Here are her contact details, since she does not want anyone from the consumer base being there I am sure she would be happy to hear our issues on this and present them on our behalf. If everyone sends an email maybe it will take her reality distortion field glasses off for long enough to read one.

http://www.attorneygeneral.gov.au/Contacts/Pages/default.aspx

ImTheRhino (profile) says:

You obviously have no idea how incompetent the Labor Party is.

People love to through down terms such as “meetings with industry stakeholders” and other variations with the key word being stakeholder. It is a sad state of affairs when the public who pay for these services are ignored as stakeholders, and the only people who get a say are the people who donate vast sums of money, while the real stakeholders get to shake our heads at the pure stupidity of what gets jammed down our throats as being good for us.

The Moondoggie says:

Re:

‘secret meetings’ = closed session meetings

That much is very clear.

Aussie ISP’s are at the table. So unless you think the ISP’s having won in the courts, are too weak, then I’m sure they are perfectly capable of representing themselves and their customers in this negotiation process.

Is it really hard to listen and give the customers of ISP’s what they want, and how they want it? Do IP maximalist find it hard to talk to the common people and instead talk to ISP about how to repress and control what the common people wants? Because the way I see it, if only copyright holders listen to us and give what we want how we wanted it, there is no reason for us to pirate.

ARE COPYRIGHT MAXIMALIST THAT MUCH DUMB? Or is it about money?

Zakida Paul says:

Response to: Random on Apr 23rd, 2012 @ 10:16pm

I agree with this. I don’t think it is about money though because they could make a whole lot more by embracing what the Internet has to offer instead of trying to stifle it. No, it is more about there own arrogance in clinging to an outdated business model. They want to control what we watch, and how and when we watch it. The internet lessens that control.

The Moondoggie says:

Re:

You could be also mistaken to have been studying history:

Abe: What I want is freedom for the negroes, and democracy for everyone.
South: What we want is to keep them slaves so shut the fuck up Abe.

Hitler: What I want is to kill all Jew prats.
Everyone not Nazi: What we want is for you to GTFO!

Old Catholic Church: What we want is for everyone to worship God…
Non-Catholic: What I want is to worship whom I choose…
Old Catholic Church: Burn him.

The Moondoggie says:

Re:

You could be also mistaken to have been studying history:

Abe: What I want is freedom for the negroes, and democracy for everyone.
South: What we want is to keep them slaves so shut the fuck up Abe.

Hitler: What I want is to kill all Jew prats.
Everyone not Nazi: What we want is for you to GTFO!

Old Catholic Church: What we want is for everyone to worship God…
Non-Catholic: What I want is to worship whom I choose…
Old Catholic Church: Burn him.

G Thompson (profile) says:

Re:

It is a secret meeting the ALP (Australian Labor Party) has actually stated as much.

It is absolutely NOT normal practice for this, since even the senate is concerned about these one sided meetings that minutes are being withheld from even them. This is quite unusual unless for things like national defence or similar.

When the Industry in question only has .5% (yes one half of a percent) of the total Australian GDP and are getting more special treatment than mining or other more beneficial industries you need to wonder what type of duress is the so called **AA’s of the USA placing upon the Australian Government . The obvious conclusion drawn doees not bode well for our democratic process.

Pirates are breaking current law
Really? Which laws? please point them out and please show proof that anyone has been charged with these laws in the last 4 years within Australia.

Basically what you have stated shows you have no clue whatsoever about what is happening within Australia or within the laws themselves. Instead you are trying to force your prejudgements on others based on your bias, your culture, and your lack of first hand knowledge.

G Thompson (profile) says:

The latest

Damn.

Not sure a OAIC appeal would do any good, Ludlam might be best bet though I also suspect they are going to try to drag out the Greens request in the Senate.

The major anomaly in all this is the inclusion of the Communications Alliance which really destroys all the AG’s arguments since equity isn’t shown on all sides.

Wonder if there might be a way to go after what CA have though… hmmmm it’s a long shot but EFA might have standing to do something.

Oh and welcome to TD.. If you ever want some of the trolls here don’t hesitate to ask… we have more than we need here *evil laugh*

Anonymous Coward says:

Re:

quote
When the Industry in question only has .5% (yes one half of a percent) of the total Australian GDP and are getting more special treatment than mining or other more beneficial industries you need to wonder what type of duress is the so called **AA’s of the USA placing upon the Australian Government . The obvious conclusion drawn doees not bode well for our democratic process.

Funny that you should mention the mining industry. The Gillard government had closed door talks with miners when framing the MIneral Resource Rents Tax, just the same way they’ve held negotiations behind closed doors with ISP’s and Content Creators.

quoteWhich laws? please point them out and please show proof that anyone has been charged with these laws in the last 4 years within Australia.
Ahh, the links are numerous. All I can do is point you to a couple, one even from a pro hacker site:
http://www.theage.com.au/technology/technology-news/ill-wind-blowing-for-software-pirate-20120117-1q4ti.html
http://www.lifehacker.com.au/2012/02/how-youre-breaking-the-law-every-day-and-what-you-can-do-about-it/

quoteBasically what you have stated shows you have no clue whatsoever about what is happening within Australia

G Thompson (profile) says:

Re:

The “mining tax” was held within closed doors for part of it yes but it was also open to community debate and senate reviews.. Or is that not relevant to your viewpoint.

Want to talk about the “Carbon Tax” as well? same situation. The Copyright talks they are having at the moment are not just secret but also undermine the Law Review that is currently in progress that will finalise its recommendations late 2013.

Also I asked for actual Australian laws.. not extradition to US based on US laws, nor a US written article solely for US laws. [From the Lifehacker link: Oz editor note: while the specific laws discussed in this article apply in the US, the general principles also apply in Australia. ]

Show using the Copyright Act (1968) or using the Crimes Act (of any state) any person who has been charged and convicted of a breach of any of these statutes within Australian courts..

Good try though

The Moondoggie says:

Re:

Although I didn’t find the laws Thompson was asking for I did found this:

From one of your links:

Although you can encrypt and anonymise your BitTorrent traffic or subscribe to a Usenet provider that offers a connection via SSL to protect yourself when downloading anything from either service, you still have no legal right to download any copyrighted content without expressed permission. For now there is little we can do to make this situation better other than encourage the film and television industries to regard piracy as competition. As iTunes has proven with music and cartoonist The Oatmeal has cleverly illustrated, when it?s easier and affordable to use the legal route, that?s the route most people will take.

Really should be a thing to emphasize. This is what should be done by them, and not making more backroom deals, secret meetings and such.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re:

What don’t you understand about “the general principles also apply in Australia”?

The Mining Tax was wrapped up behind closed doors, that’s just a fact. If it wasn’t, Andrew Forrest wouldn’t have been so pissed off.
Maybe any agreement made between the content industries and ISP’s will also go to a senate review. Who knows? Nothing has been decided.

Anonymous Coward says:

why is it that every government seems to be so intent on bending over backwards to do what ever it possibly can to please the entertainment industries whilst at the same time doing whatever they possibly can to screw over their own citizens? what is it that the entertainment industries have that they can use to blackmail every government so effectively? and please, dont just say money. no industry can pay enough to bribe the whole world! so what is it?

G Thompson (profile) says:

Re:

Actually stating the “general principles also apply to Australia” is misleading in the extreme. Since Our Laws both criminal and statute (under the CA1968) do not corresponde with US statutes.

For example DRM, fair dealing, backups, illegal compared to unlawful, statutory damages, registration.

need I go on? The US laws are not harmonised with ours other than on a very very elemental level. The only real harmonisation we have is with length of Copyright terms, and that copyright is instantaneous (though we were first with that too).

Comparing US laws with Australian is always fraught with danger, and in the case of copyright anyone who has had major legal and first hand experience with the actual laws within Australia in day to day usage like an IP Solicitor or someone consulting within that field would tell you that.

Don’t believe everything that Lifehacker places on their site just because they have a disclaimer about US v AUS so called similarities of laws.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re:

@ #22

‘Although you can encrypt and anonymise your BitTorrent traffic or subscribe to a Usenet provider that offers a connection via SSL to protect yourself when downloading anything from either service, you still have no legal right to download any copyrighted content without expressed permission. For now there is little we can do to make this situation better other than encourage the film and television industries to regard piracy as competition. As iTunes has proven with music and cartoonist The Oatmeal has cleverly illustrated, when it?s easier and affordable to use the legal route, that?s the route most people will take.’

this is the obvious route, the sensible route, the route that consumers have been asking, no, practically begging for, for ages. it is also the route that the entertainment industries refuse to take.

what needs emphasizing is that not only is it the ‘route most people will take’ but it is the entertainment industries themselves that refuse to allow this ‘route’ to be taken, not consumers that wont take it! they should stop blaming everyone else for a situation that they not only created but refused to do anything themselves to alleviate, other than keep getting the bad laws made worse and really pissing off the very people they rely on to make money. how bloody stupid is that?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re:

quote:
For now there is little we can do to make this situation better other than encourage the film and television industries to regard piracy as competition. As iTunes has proven with music and cartoonist The Oatmeal has cleverly illustrated, when it?s easier and affordable to use the legal route, that?s the route most people will take.

Has iTunes reduced music piracy? I wasn’t aware it had.
What can be more affordable than illegally free?

G Thompson (profile) says:

Re:

For someone who keeps waffling on about laws and principles and all the other stuff you seem to like using the word ‘illegal’ when in fact under Australian law there is NOTHING illegal about it.

Unlawful maybe, though the actus has to be proven first before it is deemed unlawful.

Criminal =! Civil … another area where US and Australian statutes/laws depart

Anonymous Coward says:

Game Over

Call it what you like – it’s pure evil.

One could not be blamed for concluding that most western so-called ‘leaders’ (including those of several major countries) and politicians are corrupt shills of special interests, controlled by them in one way or another, and that both they and that and those who control them must be wiped form the face of the earth for all time.

Hang them all. Then burn them to ashes, Then disintegrate the ashes.

Message to the old-school copyright industry: fuck you – you’re dead.

surfer (profile) says:

representation

by your own logic, your missing the point, ‘stakeholder’ is a term used to equate interested parties. The public is an ‘interested party’.

by your own logic, can I represent you at your ‘will hearing’?, I’ll be sure and keep your best interests at heart.

Better yet, just send me all your banking information, and I will be sure and start representing you right away.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re:

“Has iTunes reduced music piracy? I wasn’t aware it had.
What can be more affordable than illegally free?”

Well, what you aren’t aware of could fill the planet. To say the least. What you are blatantly unaware of could fill another. 🙂

Give people convenience and they’ll give you their money. Which is why iTunes is a billion dollar business. It’s convenient and easier to use than the free alternatives.

Niall (profile) says:

Re:

“When discussing the new strip mine and smelting plant proposed, local government held closed-door meetings with energy and mining company representatives. When this was protested by local environmental and citizen groups they were told ‘You little people just go back to your reality TV and let the grown-ups decide what is happening to your backyard. And yes, we have complete assurances no despoiling, poisoning, ripping off or pollution will occur.'”

John Fenderson (profile) says:

Re:

Pirates are breaking current law, so why they would be worthy of a place at the negotiating table I’m not sure.

Who said they should be?

What I find baffling is that you seem to think the only stakeholders are industry groups and pirates. Not one mention of the largest stakeholder group that would be the most affected by this stuff: the citizens.

And no, the ISPs (or any industry group) do not represent their customers. They represent themselves and their interests, which are often not aligned with that of the general public.

Jake says:

Well I for one would be mighty interested in a fly on the wall documentary about someone setting up a local, officially recognised chapter of the church of kopimism. As has been done in Sweden and one US state already. Just because the **AA mobs would probably self destruct with outrage, and all the inevitable road blocks that would suddenly be erected would display the farcical manipulation goin on by the Governments*.

*plural because it’s just as much USA meddling as the Oz gov.

Kevin (profile) says:

Idiotic move

Julie Gillard’s government is already treading a thin wire and one of her party’s advantages over the opposition is the way they have been dealing with the Internet, especially arguing that optic fibre high speed is necessary and keeping a hands off approach.
All this is changing because of the never ending political interference from USA and the corporation lobbyists wich in many cases mounts to blackmail.
Well Julie if you want votes start standing up for us voters and tell all the anti everything parties to go jump. let them know that you represent a Government for the people not for private industry.
let them know if they have a beef with alleged illegal downloading deal with it through civil courts and not rely on Governments to legislate just for their favor.

Marvin Huffaker (user link) says:

About Groupwise Email

We stumbled over here from a different web address and thought I might check things out.I like what I see, so I am just following you.Look forward to looking at your web page repeatedly. What’s Happening I am new to this, I stumbled upon this I’ve found It helpful, and it has aided me out loads. I’m hoping to give a contribution & assist different users like its helped me. Good job. Feel free to visit my website http://www.hostedgroupwise.com

Add Your Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Comment Options:

Make this the or (get credits or sign in to see balance) what's this?

What's this?

Techdirt community members with Techdirt Credits can spotlight a comment as either the "First Word" or "Last Word" on a particular comment thread. Credits can be purchased at the Techdirt Insider Shop »

Follow Techdirt

Techdirt Daily Newsletter

Techdirt Deals
Techdirt Insider Discord
The latest chatter on the Techdirt Insider Discord channel...
Loading...