The © Word

Let’s be honest, if you’d asked me face-to-face, right now what the current copyright laws are in Australia, I’d stare at you with a blank expression and nod, hoping you’d understand where I’m coming from.

I mean, I always knew copyright existed, but I’d never really understood the complexity of it, or what actually co-existed under it. Just the other day, I found out that I couldn’t actually put music I’d bought back out into the public domain. 

What’s amazing about Copyright is that it’s been around for such a long time, with the Foundation of Modern Copyright beginning in 1886. The crazy thing, is that thoughts, ideas and expressions now come under copyright law!

The current law of Copyright in Australia covers 70 years after the author’s death, and for corporate authorship, 120 years after creation, or 95 years after publication (Mitew, T. 2015). Copyright is crucial to protect the intellectual property of an artists, restricting human’s knowledge to improve someone’s work. One very recent change, or addition, to Australia’s copyright laws happened on March 17th, 2015. The Copyright Amendment Bill was cleared into Australian Parliament, this will signal the ISP-level blocking of overseas pirate sites.

It actually wasn’t too long ago that I was informed that anything that I post on FaceBook, I don’t actually own! According to Facebook’s current terms, through posting pictures and videos on FaceBook, you grant FaceBook “a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license to use any [IP] content that you post on or in connection with Facebook (“IP License”).  All this means is that FaceBook is allowed to license your content to others FOR FREE. Mark Zuckerberg, you jokester!!

Now, who the heck owns what I post to Instagram? Do I actually own anything anymore?

Instagram hasn’t had the best reputation in regards to Copyright laws recently. Instagram was actually accepting money from external parties for the content that users were putting up every day! This isn’t varying far from FaceBook’s terms and conditions, with Instagram’s terms state: “You hereby grant to Instagram a non-exclusive, fully paid and royalty-free, transferable, sub-licensable, worldwide license to use the Content that you post on or through the Service, subject to the Service’s Privacy Policy’. Furthermore you agree that you will ‘comply with all laws, rules and regulations, included but not limited to copyright laws.” 

It definitely took me a while understand the full grasp of Copyright – but I think I finally got there!


  • Ideas sourced by: Mitew, T. 2015, ‘Copyright Structures and industry Control’ lecture, BCM112, University of Wollongong, delivered 16 March 2015.
  • All other sources linked

Love, Lauren


One comment

  1. Christopher Moore · · Reply

    Reblogged this on mooreblogsread.

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