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Aussies Brace for DMCA 121

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the spreading-the-love dept.
Rusty writes "Aussies are counting down to the introduction of the US-FTA-required DMCA legislation, and trying to pressure the government to listen to consumers and innovators, not just industrial copyright holders. Linux Australia has kicked off the campaign with iownmydvds.org and iownmymusic.org."
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Aussies Brace for DMCA

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  • Hang on a minute... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Brave Guy (457657) on Thursday July 06, 2006 @05:55AM (#15665894)

    What "US-FTA-required DMCA legislation"? The Australian AG's office only recently published revised copyright information that seemed to be fixing some of the silliness: time-shifting using VCRs, format-shifting of music, etc.

    • by the_unknown_soldier (675161) on Thursday July 06, 2006 @06:04AM (#15665904)
      When it comes to copyright Australia has some of the worst laws for consumers. The USFTA was what provided the Attorney General with the political capital to establish some sort of "fair use" doctrine. Currently while (according to the high court) you can use things such as mod-chips and reverse engineering (unlike America) you do not own the copyright to anything you buy. So while it is legal to break the CSS encryption on a DVD, it is ILLEGAL to copy content off that DVD whether it has CSS or not.

      Basically: Australia is establishing fair use, and then in the same swoop allowing content holders to take it away through DMCA provisions. The aim of all this is to make the laws as similar as possible to the laws of that great shit heap some like to call the US congress.

      This all of course pails in comparison to what the USFTA is doing to Australian healthcare. You Americans bag Canadians public health system but Australia's is one of the best in the world. Since the Australian government buys all drugs, we are able to get them cheaper. But the big med companies don't like that. The only reason America made this trade agreement was to please the pharmaceutical companies. this copyright/patent stuff is just coming along for the ride
      • by Tim C (15259)
        you do not own the copyright to anything you buy

        How does that differ from any other country's copyright law? You own the medium and a licence to use the content on it in certain limited ways. Some countries specifically allow you to (eg) media- or format-shift the content, some (including the UK and apparently Australia) do not.

        However, those that do have such "fair use" clauses do *not* grant you the copyright on anything you buy. The exception to that, of course, is when you enter into a contract with som
        • by the_unknown_soldier (675161) on Thursday July 06, 2006 @07:40AM (#15666217)
          Under Australian law you haven't even bought "content". You haven't even bought the right to view content. All you have bought is a peice of plastic. Doing anything to the copyrighted material on it other than listening straight off of the disk (read: mp3's) is illegal. It's semantics, but i take your point.
          • Under Australian law you haven't even bought "content". You haven't even bought the right to view content. All you have bought is a peice of plastic. This is because the information on the cd is not a physical object, it is worthless and cant really be sold. As an australian you freedom-of-information rights allready allow you access to the information, at no cost. You need this access because as a parent you are legally responsable for the viewing habits of your children. If you werent allowed to previe
        • >How does that differ from any other country's copyright law?

          Agreed.

          > You own the medium and a licence to use the content on it in certain limited ways.

          Huh! That on the other hand I don't agree with nor do the copyright law. You own a copy of the work. There is no licenses involved and you can use it in whatever way you want with the exception being a few things that the copyright holder has the exclusive right to. All else is free ofr you to do and you do not need any license for it. Normal "use" is
        • The differrence with DMCA is that you are buying the right to be a tenant or a subscriber.
          Your tenancy has no default rights attached.
          The terms of the tenancy are based on the license of that product.
          Because the license is backed up with TPM and criminal legal penalties there can be no fair use.

          So potentially:
          You get to listen to the DVD if the DVD thinks you are a currently valid tenant/subscriber.
          If the DVD has any kind of glitch or is not working in the DVD player youre using because youre in AU you lose
      • by dbIII (701233) on Thursday July 06, 2006 @08:08AM (#15666353)
        The only reason America made this trade agreement was to please the pharmaceutical companies.
        Not quite - it was also supposed to be our bribe for helping out in Iraq - that's right, we did it for the money. It probably serves us right when the trade deal screwed Australia over horribly with downright insulting clauses like not being able to negotiate about trading more beef until 2020, and you can complelely forget about steel, sugar, wheat and everything else the trade minister was interested in. Facing an upcoming election and hit with a "buy now or never get a chance" attitude the trade minister had to agree to anything at all that was offered - hence Australia was screwed over. I'm not sure how many of the weird USA IP laws will actually be enforced - the USA is becoming far less relevant to Australian trade since it is difficult to sell things to the US from here and it makes sense to buy the goods the US would sell from China instead of paying for shipping twice. We'd probably break a few rules - after all we were in it for the money which never arrived, and a government body (eventually privatised) was paying Saddam bribes right up to the time our troops were sitting on the border waiting for the orders to roll in.

        Austalian politics would look weird in the USA - the federal government is made up of coalition of a populist right wing party that calls themselves the "Liberal" party combined with an agrarian socialist party who are far to the left on rural issues and far to the right on city issues. They do not have control of any state - so there has been a power struggle between state and federal government for years and their opponents are funded to a great extent by the trade unions and the Federal government is at this point trying to make the unions irrelevant to starve the opposition with some success. Generally Austalia does actually take a more liberal view than the USA on a lot of issues - due to most of the services and all of the domestic law enforcement being a duty of the states and due to many of the ruling federal party deciding that conservatism means doing nothing. Where the federal government has full responisbility, like immigration, the different ideology shows - with residency visas granted after donations to the party at one end and rapid mistaken deportation of our own citizens to countries at the other, and the officials responsible getting a bonus for each deportation (why check the paperwork when you can personally make more money rushing things through and there is no personal accountability?). There are some things a government should not be allowing the profit motive to interfere with for the good of the state - the for profit immigration detention centres were both a disgrace and a huge drain on the nations revenues. The USA may joke about pound me in the ass prisons, but in Australia male prisioners were raping female prisioners held in the same facility with no way to lock their doors and stop the same thing happening over and over.

        • Free Trade MY ARSE (Score:3, Interesting)

          by sr180 (700526)
          After we signed the free trade agreement, imports from the US went up, and exports TO the US went DOWN.

          We got screwed, royally.

      • The aim of all this is to make the laws as similar as possible to the laws of that great shit heap some like to call the US congress.
        I think most people just do call it "that great shit heap" and not bother to call it the US Congress.
      • > This all of course pails in comparison to what the USFTA is doing to Australian healthcare.
        > You Americans bag Canadians public health system but Australia's is one of the best in the world.

        You are not serious, are you? The Australian public health care is anything but good. Plus, under
        our great visionary Tony Abbot, even what little was good in it is getting destroyed slowly but
        surely. The fact that the US health system is possibly even worse (don't know, never lived there)
        doesn't make ours any goo
        • Scary isn't it? Do some digging, and you'll see we do have one of, if not THE best public healthcare system in the world. From subsidizing drugs (not for much longer) to keep them affordable to all, to actually paying for everything (get hit on a road, and you have a free run till your working again... ambulance, surgery, rehab, loss of earnings the whole shebang, whether the accident was your fault or not. Thats none too shabby.. granted you can thank Labor for it, and the Libs would like nothing more t
          • Um, let's see, I'm very sick at home, must go to hospital, I can't drive, call ambulance, $300.
            I have a toothache, let's see the dentist (if I can get an appointment), $70 (if it's simple).
            I feel constantly sick, do some lab tests, here's my Medicare card: No, thanks, do you have Mastercard?
            My back is aching, let's go to physio, cheque, savings or credit, sir?
            My knee is killing me, let's see, I can have elective for free, in 2 years, but if I can cough up
            the money, I can go private now... Have cataract and
            • Ok, So we dont all get free consultations at St Vincents Private when we have a cold. But, next to other well-to-do countries we are worlds ahead.

              I was going to mention Cuba, but the last time I dared to mention a communist country I was drowned by cold-war rhetoric.

              You mention having your child in a public hospital, have you seen public hospitals in the US and London (as the two obvious comparisons)? Fair enough compared to what we are raised to expect, they are shabby, but compared to what most othe

      • Where is everyone getting this conflicting data from? I read up on our copyright law just a few months ago....And it wasnt too bad...I am allowed to copy anything i like for a "non-profit" use. I can give out FREE copies to friends, as long as i dont limit the ability of the original copyright holder to sell his product. The issue was looked at again by the governor general just a few monhts ago, and the report i read from his office says he sees no need to change the law to make copying illegal. I for o
    • by GaryPatterson (852699) on Thursday July 06, 2006 @06:06AM (#15665912)
      Have you seen what those new laws entail?

      After you record a show from TV, you are allowed to watch it exactly once, after which you must *by law* delete it.

      Yes, we finally get some of the Fair Use rights enjoyed by our US friends but it's not yet sane or sensible.
      • by Anonymous Brave Guy (457657) on Thursday July 06, 2006 @06:13AM (#15665931)

        Yes, I did think that particular example was daft. (I read several of the responses the AG's issues paper [ag.gov.au] and the AG's subsequent comments while preparing a submission of my own for the UK's Gowers review.)

        That said, it's a lot less daft than selling VCRs but saying that all time-shifting is illegal, which seemed to be the case before. It might not be ideal, but at least things are going in the right direction. :-)

        I thought some of the other provisions, such as the format-shifting I mentioned before, sounded a lot more reasonable.

        Do you know what the article here is talking about? Both links were Slashdotted (despite apparently being cache links... go figure) and unless I'm missing something there's nothing mentioned by name to go and look up. What is this new legislation, and how does it fit in with the AG's issues paper and the review of the ACA?

        • All that time we allowed sale of VCRs and iPods, but disallowed the use of them! Crazy guys!
          • If you think of the proposed DMCA as putting a parking meter on all digital media(including software and hardware)
            You must be paid up to be legal.
            If you run out of license and are interacting with the content you are a criminal.

            TPMs are a direct threat to developers and manufacturers.
            For software developers and digital component manufacturers it means their competitors
            can license permission to make products which interact with their product.
            Interoperability becomes a franchise.
            This would make it possible fo
    • by Alsee (515537) on Thursday July 06, 2006 @06:27AM (#15665961) Homepage
      What "US-FTA-required DMCA legislation"?

      THIS Australia-United States Free Trade Agreement [dfat.gov.au] Article 17.4 section 7 details virtually the exact text of the US DMCA anti-circumvention law and section 8 details virtually the exact text of the US DMCA rights management information law, and reqires the Australian government to pass virtually that exact DMCA text into AU law.

      7. (a) In order to provide adequate legal protection and effective legal remedies against the circumvention of effective technological measures that authors, performers, and producers of phonograms use in connection with the exercise of their rights and that restrict unauthorised acts in respect of their works, performances, and phonograms, each Party shall provide that any person who:

      (i) knowingly, or having reasonable grounds to know, circumvents without authority any effective technological measure that controls access to a protected work, performance, or phonogram, or other subject matter; or

      (ii) manufactures, imports, distributes, offers to the public, provides, or otherwise traffics in devices, products, or components, or offers to the public, or provides services that:

      (A) are promoted, advertised, or marketed for the purpose of circumvention of any effective technological measure;

      (B) have only a limited commercially significant purpose or use other than to circumvent any effective technological measure; or

      (C) are primarily designed, produced, or performed for the purpose of enabling or facilitating the circumvention of any effective technological measure,

      shall be liable and subject to the remedies specified in Article 17.11.13. Each Party shall provide for criminal procedures and penalties to be applied where any person is found to have engaged wilfully and for the purposes of commercial advantage or financial gain in any of the above activities. Each Party may provide that such criminal procedures and penalties do not apply to a non-profit library, archive, educational institution, or public non-commercial broadcasting entity.

      (b) Effective technological measure means any technology, device, or component that, in the normal course of its operation, controls access to a protected work, performance, phonogram, or other protected subject matter, or protects any copyright.

      (c) In implementing sub-paragraph (a), neither Party shall be obligated to require that the design of, or the design and selection of parts and components for, a consumer electronics, telecommunications, or computing product provide for a response to any particular technological measure, so long as the product does not otherwise violate any measures implementing sub-paragraph (a).

      (d) Each Party shall provide that a violation of a measure implementing this paragraph is a separate civil or criminal offence and independent of any infringement that might occur under the Party's copyright law.

      (e) Each Party shall confine exceptions to any measures implementing sub-paragraph (a) to the following activities, which shall be applied to relevant measures in accordance with sub-paragraph (f):

      (i) non-infringing reverse engineering activities with regard to a lawfully obtained copy of a computer program, carried out in good faith with respect to particular elements of that computer program that have not been readily available to the person engaged in those activities, for the sole purpose of achieving interoperability of an independently created computer program with other programs;

      (ii) non-infringing good faith activities, carried out by an appropriately qualified researcher who has lawfully obtained a copy, unfixed performance, or display of a work, performance, or phonogram and who has made a good faith effort to obtain authorisation for such activities, to the extent necessary for the sole purpose of identifying and analysing flaws and vulnerabilities of technologies for scrambling and descrambling of information;
      • (i) knowingly, or having reasonable grounds to know, circumvents without authority any effective technological measure that controls access to a protected work, performance, or phonogram, or other subject matter;

        If it's a measure designed to control access to a protected work, and it's circumvented, it is not effective and therefore not covered.
        • Effective means that is requires special expertiese and/or tools to circumvent. Entering service codes into a dvd-player to make it region-free or using a marker pen to circumvent cd copy-protection does not count. Installing a specially designed mod-chip into a game console in order to play copied discs is.
        • Keep reading. (b) redefines "effective" as "in the normal course of its operation" which basically means "so long as no one does anything we didn't specifically intent for them to do".

          -
    • The problem here is with TPMs (technological prevention measures). If anything you do requires bypassing a TPM (eg. transferring a copy-protected CD to an iPod, or using deCSS to watch a DVD under Linux), then you could be breaking the law. Regardless of whether or not the activity (transferring your music to your iPod) is legal.

      Because we're signatories to the FTA, we need to pass a law banning the circumvention of TPMs. The idea with this petition is to get a sensible law passed - something that bans thin
      • by Anonymous Coward
        On the subject of technological prevention measures, I think this Italian Judge [repubblica.it] had the right approach. He turned down the request that H3G customers removing SIM card locks (and businesses offering unlocking services) be prosecuted for criminal offences such as unauthorized access to an information technology system, information technology fraud and unauthorised possession of access devices. H3G and LG had sold over 6 million video cell phones at cut down prices, together with 1-2 year subscriptions to net
        • That sounds like the kind of sensible decision that wont be possible under DMCA.
          It is exactly the shift from us owning a hardware/software/content product like a book
          to being a subscriber or tenant of these things that is a problem.

          With TPM it becomes criminal to discover Sony has put a rootkit on your system,
          it becomes criminal to investigate Microsoft's spyware system which phones home
          in readiness for their WGA with kill switch for systems running older versions(currently postponed).

          It becomes criminal to
  • by Tribbin (565963) on Thursday July 06, 2006 @05:57AM (#15665897) Homepage
    See more info at:

    iownyourdvds.org
  • Call me a cynic, but i've seen unequivocal evidence from the EU member nations that these elitists don't give a damn about what their own peoples have to say.

    *shameless plug* check my sig for details. */shameless plug*
    • And the EU has what to do with Australia ?
      • And the EU has what to do with Australia ?

        they caved to us based lobbyists and adopted the DMCA..
        • >they caved to us based lobbyists and adopted the DMCA..

          Not completely true. The EU directive doesn't have clauses about "access" to a work. The ponly protection included is those that control rights the copyright holder has. Acces is NOT such a one. The US DMCA on the other hand adds "access" as a sort of new right for circumvention.

          Sure, some European countries has gone further than the directive and also added "access", but some has not.
          • so they protect "rights" controls? that's even worse. the point however is moot.. us courts have determined that there is no real difference between enforcing a rights control and enforcing an access control. In order to disable rights controls you must gain access, and in order to disable access controls you must control your rights.. you cant have one without the other with DRM.
            • >so they protect "rights" controls?

              Yes, circumvention of protection of actions that the copyright holder has exclusive rights on. Or if you want to look at it in some other way. Protection of something that would otherwise have been an infringement and nothing else.

              >that's even worse.

              Even worse than what? The US has the exact same PLUS the added protection for "access".

              >us courts have determined that there is no real difference between enforcing a rights
              >control and enforcing an access control.

              B
              • Yes, circumvention of protection of actions that the copyright holder has exclusive rights on. Or if you want to look at it in some other way. Protection of something that would otherwise have been an infringement and nothing else.

                DRM is not designed this way.. it is designed with the default as "deny".

                In other words.. "protection" from any uses some unimaginative RIAA schill didnt think of.. all of which are fair uses, and "protection" from such democratic ideas as interoperability, format shifting, space
                • >DRM is not designed this way.. it is designed with the default
                  >as "deny".

                  I have not discussed how DRM works or even discussed it at all. I was talking about the EU driective and the US DMCA and their differences. How DRM works is quite irellevant to that.

                  >no.. the us law explicitly stated that "rights controls" could be
                  >bypassed for fair use, this was later overturned because you had to
                  >circumvent access controls in order to access and disable the rights
                  >controls.

                  The US copyright law does
    • Australia is not an EU member nation. It's not even in Europe, it's on a completely different continent on the other side of the world. Perhaps you are thinking of Austria?

  • Leave it to Slashdot to destroy the server when it's "kicked off".

    *claps*

    Xserv
    • From the page:

      You paid good money for your CDs, and you expect to be able to play them anywhere, or transfer them to your iPod - or whatever cool gadget comes out next year. However, if the American music companies get their way, such transfers will be illegal. That's right: you won't be able to play your CDs on your music player!
      What's going on here?

      The Australia-US Free Trade Agreement requires new laws which prevent "circumvention of technological protection measures". Some companies want the government
    • Except for the fact that slashdot linked to the nyud.net distributed mirror thingy and not the actual site.
  • FTA Is A Joke (Score:5, Insightful)

    by GaryPatterson (852699) on Thursday July 06, 2006 @06:13AM (#15665930)
    The ruling elite here in Australia, the increasingly ironically named Liberal Party, solid the FTA on the basis of free and equal trade between Australia and the US. Because, you know, we have an equal seating at the bargaining table. Australia and the largest economy on the planet. Equal.

    Yeah, that works.

    After about a year we find that US imports have nearly tripled, while Australian exports to the US have dropped.

    Amazing surprise to some of us who spoke out at the time but were silenced by the scream of 'free money' from the US that so many thought they'd see.

    The FTA also included a number of hilarious provisions like "you can export beef to the US in 18 years, unless they veto it in the meantime" and "bend over for our DMCA."

    So now we welcome our US overlords, and hope that they don't brutalise our nation too badly when we become a new vassal province (or dare we hope - a state!). The national anthem never really caught on anyway. It has the word "girt" in it, which was too much for most Aussies.

    Go DMCA! It's a bloody bonza idea, you beauty! (just practicing for the re-education camps)
    • John Howard it so firmly in the pocket of George W. that Mr. Bush's phone gets scratched on the Aussie leaders glasses...
    • Re:FTA Is A Joke (Score:5, Informative)

      by G-funk (22712) <josh@gfunk007.com> on Thursday July 06, 2006 @06:33AM (#15665971) Homepage Journal
      The FTA had nothing to do with import and export levels, that was peripheral. It was about selling us BS "intellectual property" in return for limiting the US farming subsidies so our economy that's still based so heavily in primary induustry doesn't fall over.
      • It's always like that, see the FTA proposed in latin america and other countries. Pseudo-economists get their pants wet saying "oh we will be able to sell our agro products to the US!" but we've already been there. Barriers still remain, nothing gets exported, and we get TONS of stupid dmca-like laws. The same things is done via the IMF and the BID, they loan, they loan, to corrupt politicians not because they help development, or because they think they'll get paid, but because they KNOW they won't get pai
      • Except that Agriculture is less than 4% of GNP. The idea that farmers matter to the Australian economy is such a ridiculous furphy. We could ditch the whole rural sector, import our food and concentrate on mining and services and be well ahead financially.
        Farming is a net drain on the Australian economy but the major media owners (especially the Packer family) make money from government subsidies so it's never reported as such.
        • If this [cia.gov] is true, then my bad. Why the fuck do we take so much shit in the various trade agreements over the years? I always thought mining was a distant second to farming. Lousy media.

          Lousy national party and their farm propaganda.
    • No need for a re-education camp. It's all much simpler: you make a "mistake", they take your money. Repeat until you've learned your lesson.
    • Re:FTA Is A Joke (Score:3, Interesting)

      by graffix_jones (444726)

      After about a year we find that US imports have nearly tripled, while Australian exports to the US have dropped.

      Anyone with a rudimentary understanding of economics can tell you that this has more to do with the weakening of the US Dollar versus some sort of sinister plan to infiltrate your market with American goods. Even if you don't understand economics, common sense tells you that if something becomes cheaper, more of it will probably be sold, which is exactly what is happening in this instance. And

    • Try penal colony.
      The default state for any technology is to assume you are illegal, not a subscribed customer,
      and you must feed the parking meter to prove your innocence, permission to interact as a customer.

      If you cannot afford the new license which asks for your firstborn in exchange for using the system for the next 24 hours and counting, or
      if the parking meter is broken, or
      if you want to make an alternative system but would like it to work with a propriatory one,
      but your new product does not yet have a
  • Or as Bad Religion put it:

    "we've got spite and dedication as a vehement brew
    the world hates us, well we hate them too
    but you're exempted of course if you
    come join us

    independent, self-contented, revolutionary
    intellectual, brave, strong and scholarly
    if you're not one of them, you're us already so

    come join us"

    Thank you for showing the world that the US and the Brits aren't the only ones capable of complete and utter retardation in the new technological era we're trying to exclude ourselves out of.

    rhY
  • by Submarine (12319) on Thursday July 06, 2006 @06:21AM (#15665948) Homepage
    After the DMCA in the USA...
    After the 2001 EUCD (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EU_Copyright_Directi ve) in the EU...
    After the 2006 DADVSI (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DADVSI) in France...
  • by MavEtJu (241979) <slashdot@@@mavetju...org> on Thursday July 06, 2006 @06:24AM (#15665953) Homepage
    I love it when John Howard goes over to the USA for a visit and comes back...

    ... One time he came back with the idea of an Free Trade Agreement

    ... And the next time he came back with the idea that nuclear weapons were safe and that same-sex marriages were dangerous.

    I don't know what they feed him there in Washington, but it surely isn't healthy.
  • by craznar (710808) on Thursday July 06, 2006 @06:33AM (#15665973) Homepage
    Ok ... I'm happy for the record companies to have a choice, either:

    A: I buy a DVD, and I own it ... I can copy it, put it on my hard drive and if I lose it I have to buy a new one.
    B: I buy the rights to play the DVD... I can't copy it, however if I lose it I can walk into a store and take another one free.

    Seems reasonable to me...

    Wait ... there is one flaw in my plan, just one word. I'm sure you can guess which one it is.

    If I ever get nabbed for some stupid DMCA law, I'm going to very publicly sell my several thousand dollars of purchased DVDs to pay for some of my defence.

    I think that will make the point...
    • by KiloByte (825081) on Thursday July 06, 2006 @06:53AM (#15666022)
      Ok ... I'm happy for the record companies to have a choice, either:

      A: I buy a DVD, and I own it ... I can copy it, put it on my hard drive and if I lose it I have to buy a new one.
      B: I buy the rights to play the DVD... I can't copy it, however if I lose it I can walk into a store and take another one free.

      [...]
      If I ever get nabbed for some stupid DMCA law, I'm going to very publicly sell my several thousand dollars of purchased DVDs to pay for some of my defence.
      You assume that you have any rights to whatever you bought/licensed. The whole point of DMCA-like laws is to deny you these very rights. Including the right to resell your purchased DVDs. Just wait for the (mandatory) DRM.
  • good thing they used [iownmymusic.org] that dreadful comment of Tommi Kyyrä [arstechnica.com] (original mirrored here [homeunix.org]) from last year:

    Will the record companies give you the choice? For their perspective, we quote Tommi Kyyrä, of IFPI Finland: "Now, we need to understand that listening to music on your computer is an extra privilege. Normally people listen to music on their car or through their home stereos," said Kyyrä. "If you are a Linux or Mac user, you should consider purchasing a regular CD player."

  • But, then again, there's no such thing as a "free trade" agreement with the US. It's a "you'll buy our products and we'll fuck your producers and exporters" agreement.
    When the agreement is fully in effect, which will be sometime around 2017 IMMIC, its gross effect on the Australian economy will be an increase of 0.5% of current GDP. What a complete and utter fucking waste of time!

    What's more terrifying is that the AUS-FTA is the likely shape of agreements hammered out with other nations in the future, a

  • Sounds like the Aussies got it hard. First they get beatup by Kangroos. Then they have to call in their arm to take care of some frogs that were kicking their butts. Now their own courts are going to be bending them over. Poor bloaks -Paul
  • We've had a while to brace for this, it was stated when the details of the FTA became available early last year.

    Furthermore, we are currently _discussing_ another useless FTA, this time with China.
    • Hmm I wonder what laws we'll have to change for this one. Communism anyone? Sounds about on par. All praise chairman Howard.

      Well ok he's actually on the right, but you know the Labor party aint getting anywhere close to power in the near future.
  • It looks like the politicians have figured out one more way to take away rights--use treaties. All they need is one other country to agree with them, and suddenly, unpopular legislation must be passed to comply with the treaty. And then, when "those pesky liberals" complain about losing their rights, politicians justify it by saying it was for free trade--as if that's supposed to mean anything good to Joe Schmo, who's most likely going to lose his job to outsourcing, and not have any civil liberties left

    • Actually you're dead right. It was started under Hawke/Keating Labour, but was bought to a new level by Howard the Coward.

      AFAIR, treaties don't even have to be approved by parliament. (Some one correct me if I'm wrong). The enabling legislation is then a shoo-in as the govt. then just points to the treaty.

      Free-trade treaty is an oxymoron anyway. How can something that thick make it EASIER to trade? Just makes it easier for the rich to rip us off and makes it harder for us to do anything about it.
      • There needs to be some feedback loop to the treaty processes from the communities around the world.

        I've been wondering if there is a way to initiate a referendum in each the impacted countries simultaneously,
        This would highlight the fact that the treaty process is not representative and is destructive worldwide.
        This might be a simplistic approach but there needs to be some way to reconnect the law makers with the people who have to live by them.

        It impacts consumers, developers, any small independent manufac
  • Both of the links on the story are dead. Either they are incorrect, or slashdotted.
    • works fine here so perhaps it was a temporary issue.

      If you would like to sign a petition you can also head to your local Linux user group.

      Ed Felton has a good blog on DMCA as it is being used currently in the US.
      He also has comments on the new incoming even nastier version being negotiated there.
      http://www.freedom-to-tinker.com/?cat=5 [freedom-to-tinker.com]

      Kim Weatherall has info about the impact on AU from a lawyers perspective.
      http://weatherall.blogspot.com/ [blogspot.com]

      Ive got a small blog with some of the implications for AU written for l
  • First they bring in the new regulatory laws so we can't even smoke in pubs and nightclubs any more - and I saw first-hand tonight what a real impact that has on the local pubs and clubs around where I live - and now we're going to get the MAFIA (Music And Film Industry Association) restrictions?

    Australia is rapidly turning into another state of the US of A - looking over all the legislation, not just the IP stuff, that's been introduced lately -, and I am seriously wondering whether I should be putting

    • Several of the provinces in Canada have banned smoking in pubs and nightclubs. It hasn't been an issue here. There is always an initial drop, but it comes back when people realize there isn't anywhere else to go to smoke, so they just suck it up and go out anyway.

  • You can checkout a Q and A he did here [linux.org.au] (slides used in the talk are here [ozlabs.org]) and a two [linux.org.au] part [linux.org.au] interview he did for the Linux Australia Update podcast [localfoss.org].

    Also check out The petition [linux.org.au]
  • Dont tell me that they've already forgotten about the Australian American War.

    "Can you tell me what this Australian-American war was... I never really heard of it"

    "God, not another one! The Australian-American war the was the biggest war since the big one! I tell ya, I didn't do two tours and take boomerang shrapnel in my head to come back here and have a bunch of hippies deny our history! Those Aussies were ruthless! They even wired kangaroos with explosives...come hopping in the camp and knock out t
  • Hi folks

    LinuxAU have a petition to sign to restrict the circumvention to nefarious acts directly tied to copyright infringement.
    Contact your local lug to sign one, download one from the LinuxAU site below.
    http://www.linux.org.au/law [linux.org.au]

    I've been pulling together an info stash about the impact on AU of DMCA for layfolk.
    http://www.lucychili.blogspot.com/ [blogspot.com]

    Kim Weatherall is a good place to start if you want to see the proposed DMCA law from the perspective of a lawyer.
    http://weatherall.blogspot.com/2005_08_01_weathe [blogspot.com]

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