Updated: 04/07/2014 22:17

MinLaw launches public consultation on amendments to Copyright Law

MinLaw launches public consultation on amendments to Copyright Law

Rights holders will be able to apply directly to the courts to block websites that infringe their copyrights under proposed changes to the Copyright Act. 

They no longer have to sue Internet Service Providers or ISPs in the process, which is the case currently. 

The Law Ministry says the changes are expected to introduce efficiency, and avoid implicating ISPs unnecessarily. 

On top of this, a non-exhaustive list of factors used to define copyright infringing websites will be drawn up. 

Some factors include the primary purpose of the site - whether it's to commit or facilitate copyright infringement - and the number of site visitors. 

The changes target websites that blatantly flout copyright laws and will not affect content sharing sites and search engines such as YouTube and Google. 

MinLaw says that factors such as the shrinking creative industry and the emergence of legal music sites such as iTunes and Spotify have given cause for a review of the Act. 

The proposed amendments is modeled after similar systems in the UK, Denmark and Belgium. 

The ministry is launching a public consultation on the proposed changes. 

The consultation ends April the 21st. 

The Act is expected to be debated and passed in Parliament in July or August. 

All changes will likely be implemented by the end of the year.

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