In June 2017 the Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs released ‘Terms of Reference’ to launch a review of the Copyright Act 1994.

Recorded Music NZ has undertaken some extensive analysis and preparatory work in response, and has presented this comprehensive submission to both Ministers and Ministerial officials ahead of the release of the Issues Paper due in April 2018.

The review of the Copyright Act which is at the core of the Music (and Creative) Economy is one of the key projects and priorities for Recorded Music NZ on an ongoing basis.

The key points in our submission are that:

  • Copyright is a fundamental prerequisite for a well-functioning Music industry and creative economy – the countries that provide robust copyright law outstrip those who do not in terms of both GDP and productivity returns;
  • A major opportunity exists to grow New Zealand’s economic, cultural and social wellbeing through development of our creative economy for the benefit of both our local users and as export content; and
  • A number of priorities for action are identified in relation to copyright – importantly:
    • Reframe the Terms of Reference so that copyright is a seen as a value creator and not merely an input or cost;
    • Seek a fair, balance and functioning marketplace.  In Music’s case this is a fair digital market for all including the artists who create great Music;
    • Eliminate “leakage” (estimated to be 42% of the Recorded Music’s market) – i.e. from piracy and exploitative platforms.  Unfortunately piracy is still a real threat to the creative sector and in Music’s case is due to ongoing stream ripping notwithstanding the extensive legal and cost effective services our industry provides to consumers and users. Click here to view a current list of our legal services.
    • Clarify our safe harbour rules so that they are for passive users and not active ones which was the intent of the legislature when the rules were introduced in 2008.  The DMCA is no longer the gold standard and needs to be recalibrated as is proposed in Europe; and
    • Revise and update the Part III exemptions but do not go to the uncertain world of US Style “fair use”; and
    • Lastly, provide clarity and certainty in the law.

     The link to our full submission is here:

    Should you have any questions about this submission or the Copyright Act review please contact Damian Vaughan – Damian@recordedmusic.co.nz or Kristin Bowman – kristin@recordedmusic.co.nz

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