Govt leaves book copyright laws unchanged
Nov 11, 2009
Delegates Gordon Wilson and Darren Edwards at PMP-Griffin in Adelaide travelled to attend the Melbourne rally, and say the decision is a huge weight off their shoulders.
Proposals to remove the copyright laws that protect Australian authors and publishers have been rejected by the federal government following a long campaign by print workers, authors and publishers.
The Productivity Commission had proposed removing restrictions to allow royalty-free surplus overseas editions to compete with full price Australian editions.
The commission argued that free market theory would possibly reduce prices for consumers.
Minister for Competition Policy and Consumer Affairs, Dr Craig Emerson today announced that the government had sided with the concerns of the majority of the printing and publishing industry which had warned the changes would decimate Australian cultural output and costs hundreds of jobs, particularly in regional areas.
The Minister's full press statement is available here.
AMWU National Secretary, Dave Oliver, addressed a community rally opposed to the changes outside Victorian State Parliament.
"Today is a victory for workers in Australia's competitive and high quality print industry, a victory for Australian culture, and a victory for common sense.
"The Productivity Commission's recommendations were not grounded in reality, and completely ignored the likely consequences on Australian cultural production and related jobs in the printing industry.
"The print workers as well as the authors and concerned Australians who have been part of this campaign have achieved an important victory today, and for the future.
Authors, including Shane Maloney also spoke.
Mr Maloney lightheartedly told the rally that he hoped to see the Productivity Commission's report 'pulped or remaindered and sold off as cheaply as possible'.
Gordon Wilson and Darren Edwards were among delegates who travelled from Adelaide.
"It's a huge relief", said Gordon.
"It means that our jobs aren't up in the air, and it's about time that we had some certainty for our company and our jobs."
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