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Use of Generalist Fair Use Defence in Australian Intellectual Property Law

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Essay title: Use of Generalist Fair Use Defence in Australian Intellectual Property Law

Student Name: Peter Foster

Student Number: 202117722

Degree: Bachelor of Laws

Course: Intellectual Property Law

Course Code: LS331

Assessment: Major Essay and Annotated Bibliography

Due Date: 02 May 2003

Major Essay Question:

Discuss the pros and cons of introducing a generalist fair use defence into Australian copyright law either in addition to or in submission for the existing details defences.

The objective of the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) is to protect those who create works, such as artistic works or literary works, as well as those other subject matter, such as films or sounds recordings, from those who would serve to exploit or profit from their labor, skill and creativity. But, what about those who use these protected works and other subject matter for interests different to the above? Such as for educational purposes or for broadcasting? Under the act, there are listed many defences to protect an individual or a corporation from infringement of copyright, or in other words, directly or indirectly, infringing those exclusive rights that the copyright owner possess, also listed under the act . These defences operate in areas such as fair dealing, educational uses, artistic works, performances, communication and broadcasting, computer programs, importing, copying by libraries and archives and judicial proceedings and statutes . Although the current act does provide protection, in the form of legislated, or statutory defences, it could be argued that a fair use defence, as is currently being used in the United States of America via their equivalent of the Copyright act , may be a more simple approach to this issue. The current legislation in some areas is specific, and in others, hard to understand. A generalist fair use defence may simplify the current legislation and also create less confusion for the individual and the Court system. But, there is always the risk

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