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Making And Sharing Memes 'Illegal' In Australia, Copyright Laws Under Review.

Sharing memes and "rage comics" are illegal in Australia, according to the country's copyright law. The Li'll Bub, Condescending Wonka and Ryan Gosling's hey girl are considered crimes under Australian law. A fine of up to $93,500 will be imposed by sharing a video from YouTube.

According to the Australian copyright law section 132A part 2, "distributing" an article may affect the owner of the copyright. With this in mind, the sharing of photos and videos on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Reddit and other social media sites is illegal in Australia.

This means Australians are unknowingly or knowingly break the law by sharing content on social media. According to the Australia Digital Alliance (ADA), it is trying to change the "broken" copyright law of the country.

The ADA is campaigning for a fair use provision to be added to the Australian copyright law to allow people to copy, share and recreate works as long as they don't generate a profit from copyright owners.

Campaign Executive Producer and Comedian Dan Ilic said the issue is not about piracy but about culture. He said it's all about the youth telling and sharing stories.

Although few people have been prosecuted for creating and sharing memes online, there are instances where these could happen. Juice Media has been targeted by Australian courts for having WikiLeaks Founder Julian Assange made a parody of "You're the Voice" by John Farnham.

The record label company issued a take-down notice to YouTube for copyright infringement. The video was removed from the site shortly.

The Australian copyright laws are under review by government.

Ilic said to let the laws continue will only "breed contempt for the law." He added people may think it's "okay to disobey the law."

The Australian Law Reform Commission is currently inquiring into the Copyright and the Digital Economy, according to Atty. Gen. and Sen. George Brandis. The Australian government will consider recommendations in its final reports.
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Publication:International Business Times - US ed.
Geographic Code:8AUST
Date:Nov 13, 2013
Words:322
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