Copyright fires up Linux, open source advocates

Linux Australia and the Open Source Industry Association today urged the federal government not to abandon market competition.

A petition, from Linux Australia, is asking the government to uphold consumer and competition rights when drafting anti-circumvention laws, which will tighten the reins on copying protected materials.

Specifically, laws may introduce and enforce a new category of copyright violations that prohibit users for circumventing security controls designed to control access to digital media and products. The laws are required under the Free Trade Agreement negotiated between the US and Australia.

Linux Australia IP policy advisor Rusty Russell says although the treaty does not demand Australia adopt a carbon copy of the suppressive US law, "large business interests" are pushing for similar restrictions on access to digital material.

"The treaty doesn't force us to implement this like the US, where these laws have driven litigation to suppress academic publications, prevent third-party printer cartridge manufacturers, and eliminate competition by open source software. But naturally, some large business interests are pressing for the same restrictions on legitimate access to digital material here," he said.

He said once consumers have paid for digital products, they should be allowed to use it as they wish.

"Consumers should have full use of legitimately purchased digital material, whether it be playing DVDs, copying CDs onto iPods, using computer programs of their choice, or playing iTunes-bought songs on non-iPod MP3 players. You've paid for it, you use it as you see fit," he said.

Con Zymaris, a director with the Open Source Industry Association, said: "Australian small businesses are world-class at using, deploying and building Open Source software. We must be free to use, deploy and build open source software without fear of lawsuits from larger incumbents.

"If we don't push back now, Australian competition, consumer rights and freedoms will be hamstrung as we enter the digital age."

Linux Australia is urging all those affected by such new laws to sign the petition which can be accessed at http://linux.org.au/law.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Darren Pauli

Computerworld
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?