Australia's Stop Online Piracy Act: Copyright Law, Site-Blocking, and Search Filters in an Age of Internet Censorship
The Canberra Law Review, 16 (1), 10-64, 2019
55 Pages Posted: 7 Jul 2019 Last revised: 22 Nov 2019
Date Written: November 21, 2019
Relying upon the work of Cory Doctorow, this paper argues that Australia’s copyright regime for site-blocking and search-filtering poses a threat to consumer rights, competition policy, and Internet Freedom. This paper first reviews the model of the Copyright Amendment (Online Infringement) Act 2015 (Cth) introduced by the then Minister for Communications and the Arts the Hon. Malcolm Turnbull. Secondly, it explores the flurry of cases brought by the film, television, and music industries in respect of this legislative regime. Third, this paper evaluates the expansion of this regime with the Copyright Amendment (Online Infringement) Act 2018 (Cth). In light of such developments, the conclusion calls for a new approach for Internet regulation by the Australian Parliament. It highlights the need for a bill of rights in Australia for a digital age. As Sir Tim Berners-Lee says, we need a Magna Carta to protect an open and accessible Internet.
Keywords: Copyright Law, Site-Blocking, Internet Search Engines, Search-Blocking, Internet Service Providers, Internet Filter, Free Speech, Internet Freedom, Censorship, Copyright Enforcement
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