Response to Section 92A document positive

More than 100 submissions on proposal document have been received

The initial response to alternatives to the controversial section 92A of the Copyright Act has been positive, Commerce Minister Simon Power says.

In a statement released today, Power says there have been 113 submissions to the Section 92A proposal document that was released for public consultation in July. Of those, 40 were from industry associations.

Power says “the majority of submitters acknowledged the need to respect the rights of copyright owners, but want this balanced by consumer and business needs to access these original creations”.

A key concern raised by some submitters was the proposal to terminate internet accounts as a remedy to copyright infringement.

“It was felt termination was an unreasonable 'remedy', especially where multiple users of a single account could make identifying an infringer difficult.

“However, there was general support for the Copyright Tribunal playing the role of independent third party arbiter if necessary”.

Power says there seems to be general support for the proposals. The are regarded as a significant improvement on the original.

“This gives me encouragement that we’re on track to developing a fair and balanced process to deal with online copyright infringement.”

A policy paper on the alternative to Section 92A will go to Cabinet later this year and legislation is expected to be introduced before the end of the year.

The public will have another chance to make submissions during the select committee stage.

A summary of submissions is available at the Ministry of Economic Development website.

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