The Federal Government has now passed the Copyright Amendment (Online Infringement) Bill 2018, with online search engines now included in the fight against online piracy.
The legislation introduced by Minister Mitch Fifield and passed with support from the Opposition, Greens and cross bench senators makes it easier to block mirror sites and reduces the burden of proving a site’s primary purpose is copyright infringement.
Free TV Australia CEO, Bridget Fair said “This legislation is a critical tool for content owners, including broadcasters, to protect their content against large-scale online piracy.
“Importantly, it acknowledges the role that online search engines play in facilitating access to pirated material. Content creators will now be able to seek orders to demote or remove search results for infringing sites.”
The amendment, which received objections from the Digital Industry Group Inc (DIGI) whose members also include Google, Instagram, Yahoo, YouTube, Redbubble, and Oath, is to be reviewed in 2 years.
Under the initial Federal Court ruling, rights holders are to pay a AU$50 fee per domain they want to block, with the websites to be blocked within 15 business days.