Progress for 2012
In 2012 the project has continued to undertake a range of activities designed to stimulate debate around the future of copyright law.
Creative Commons Australia
The project has run the Creative Commons project in Australia, and throughout 2012 has maintained a consistent level of engagement with a variety of stakeholders including universities, government at all levels, national research bodies, individual creators and the general public. In doing so, we have responded to enquiries and conducted seminars about the operation of the Creative Commons licences. On 15 June 2012 we conducted a comprehensive one-day seminar on Creative Commons at the Australian Catholic University in Melbourne. The seminar canvassed the use of CC in the public sector, for Open Educational Resources (OER), in research, and in the creative and cultural sectors.
A series of seminars, entitled Creative Commons and the Digital Economy, were conducted on a fortnightly interval at QUT from 5 October to 16 November 2012. The first seminar provided an overview of the role of CC licences, while the subsequent three seminars were tailored for those in the creative sector, education and research sectors, and the public sector respectively. In addition, the seminars had a practical component which explained how to apply a CC licence, search for CC licensed material, and attribute CC material appropriately.
In addition to public seminars, the project also conducted executive level briefings on Creative Commons to the ABC, Museum Victoria and to international visitors, such as a representative from the Korea Database Agency. Anne Fitzgerald represented CC Australia at the CC Asia Pacific Regional Meeting held in Jakarta, Indonesia in November 2012. Fitzgerald provided a report back on our activities in Australia, and also provided an in-depth presentation about the adoption of CC in the Australian public sector to conference delegates.
The project has also provided a significant amount of input into the drafting of version 4.0 of the Creative Commons licences, in collaboration with CC’s legal counsel. The CC 4.0 draft has gone through several iterations since it began in 2012, and the final draft is expected to be ready in early 2013.
PhD and postdoctoral research
Highlights of the year included the graduation of two doctoral students: Steven Gething and John Gilchrist. Gething’s PhD focussed on the effectiveness of Australian copyright offences in the digital era, while Gilchrist’s examined Crown Copyright and the role of government as proprietor, preserver and user of copyright material.
Our postdoctoral researchers completed publications that were highly relevant to the theory and practice of Intellectual Property and Innovation. Rami Olwan completed his book Intellectual Property and Development: Theory and Practice, published by Springer, while Sampsung Shi’s article ‘Time shifting in a networked digital world: Optus TV now and copyright in the Cloud’ was published in the prestigious European Intellectual Property Review (EIPR).
Other presentations and publications
Brian Fitzgerald presented to the Judicial Commission of New South Wales Annual Conference in September 2012 on the topic of ‘Social Networking Technologies and the Courts’, outlining the challenges faced by judges, legal practitioners, and juries in their dealings with popular web 2.0 and social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter.
A number of papers were presented at the ‘Internet Freedom and the Law in Asia’ workshop convened by Christoph Antons (Deakin University) and Brian Fitzgerald (Australian Catholic University) in December 2012. Anne Fitzgerald and Cheryl Foong delivered a paper reflecting on the rise of the digital commons and the widespread adoption of CC licensing, and the implications for copyright theory. Benedict Atkinson canvassed the problem of ownership and internet regulation, while Kylie Pappalardo discussed the treatment of users within the doctrine of intermediary liability in copyright. Kunle Ola presented a paper on Open Access in Africa. The proceedings from the workshop are to be published as a book.
Plans for 2013
In 2013 we plan to:
- progress the further development and implementation of Creative Commons licensing, with a special focus on Open Educational Resources (OER). We will continue our engagement with those in the creative, education, research and government sectors through research and training seminars, and foster new relationships with individuals and organisations entering the Open Access environment for the first time
- continue to supervise PhD students
- investigate the topic of the relationship between the Australian Constitution and copyright
- continue to stimulate debate and further the agenda for copyright reform by participating in legal and policy reviews conducted by the federal government, organising seminars and conferences, and continuing to publish on CC licensing and copyright more generally.