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Media Release
18 October 2018

Free TV Welcomes Moves to Further Crackdown on Online Piracy

Free TV Australia today welcomed the Government’s introduction of legislation to protect content creators by expanding the site blocking provisions of the Copyright Act.

Free TV Australia CEO, Bridget Fair said “Free TV congratulates Minister Fifield for taking action to protect the programs that millions of Australians watch every day on commercial TV networks.  This is a very important initiative to support Australian creators of all kinds against theft of their content.

Australians love great local content and they love that it is available for them for free on commercial television networks.  Free TV broadcasters are responsible for 6 out of every 10 dollars spent on Australian production.  But our investment in great creative content is put at risk by those who choose to steal content through online piracy.

We know that site blocking can more than halve the usage of online pirate sites.  It works.   This legislation will put a stop to the high-tech game of whack-a-mole copyright owners have been forced to play, by allowing content creators to quickly seek blocks on proxy and mirror sites and a wider range of overseas websites and file-sharing services.

Crucially the legislation is also a significant step in holding Google to account for its role in facilitating online piracy. Under the legislation, content owners can seek orders requiring search engines to demote or remove search results for infringing sites.

Free TV is continuing to engage with the Government and the ACCC on further measures to encourage Google and Facebook to proactively identify and remove pirated content.

Download a copy of the PDF here