Copyright Agreements

Copyright Act 1968

The State Government copies material that is subject to copyright, such as publications and broadcasts, as it undertakes day-to-day business.

The Copyright Act 1968 (the Act) allows governments to use copyrighted material for the services of government without infringing the Act if it pays equitable remuneration to the appropriate declared collecting society. 

Collecting societies are declared pursuant to section 153F of the Act.  Section 183 of the Act requires that equitable remuneration must be calculated using a method agreed on by the collecting society and government, such as a sampling survey.

Payment to collecting societies negates the need for governments to negotiate directly with individual copyright owners.  In addition, the collecting society bears the administrative burden of identifying copyright owners and the distribution of remuneration.

The State Government has, or has had, dealings with three collecting societies:

  • Copyright Agency (CAL) for print and electronic publications;
  • Screenrights for radio and television broadcasts; and
  • Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA) for the performance of music.

Role of State Records

Since 2001, State Records has represented the State Government in national negotiations on agreements with collecting societies, coordinated sampling surveys and recommended and facilitated payment of the State's copyright liability.  In addition State Records provides expert policy advice on copyright agreements; liaises with copyright counterparts in other jurisdictions; and maintains relationships with collecting societies.

Decentralised Billing

In 2015, the South Australian Government approved the establishment of a direct billing model.  The purpose of this model was to require agencies to meet their own copyright liabilities.  Direct billing allows agencies to be invoiced directly by declared collecting societies but for the relationship with those societes to remain centrally managed by State Records and the Attorney-General's Department.

Copyright Agency Limited

In April 2016 a remuneration agreement was reached between CAL and the State Government on a rate of $7.30 per full-time equivalent staff member (FTE) with no CPI increase for the 2015/16 financial year. 

The first cycle of agency direct billing was undertaken in May 2016 for liabilities accrued during the 2015/16 financial year.  Remuneration is calculated by multiplying the agreed remuneration rate by the number of FTE staff the agency employs.  FTE numbers are taken from workforce information published by the South Australian Government’s Office of the Public Sector.

The remuneration rate for 2016/17 is currently being negotiated.  GST is not payable on these invoices.

Screenrights

The agreement between the South Australian Government and the Audio-visual Copyright Society Limited (Screenrights) expired on 30 June 2016, but continues for successive one year periods until either party gives notice to the other of its termination effective on the next succeeding 30 June.

Invoicing for Screenrights occurs mid year after the conclusion of the previous year's billing cycle and is calculated by multiplying the remuneration rate by the number of FTE staff the agency employs.  FTE numbers are taken from workforce information published by the South Australian Government’s Office of the Public Sector.

The remuneration rate for 2015/16 was $0.46 per FTE.  GST is not payable on these invoices.

Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA)

** NOTE:  The South Australian Government has recently made the decision to terminate the agreement with the Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA) as at 30 June 2017 **

In 2004 the South Australian Government entered into a licence agreement with APRA.  This agreement allowed agencies to use recorded music or broadcast radio or television in public spaces or on the telephone for the services of Government. 

Invoicing for 2016/17 occurred in the second half of 2017 and was calculated by multiplying the remuneration rate by the number of FTE staff the agency employs.  FTE numbers were taken from workforce information published by the South Australian Government's Office of the Public Sector.

The remuneration rate for 16/17 was $0.55 per FTE.  GST was applied to these invoices.

Termination of the licence agreement with APRA

On 20 March 2017, the Deputy Premier terminated the agreement with APRA, effective 30 June 2017.

The decision was made based on a decrease in the use of APRA's repertoire by State Government agencies.  This decision, to some extent, was made as a result of a reduction in the need for public reception areas due to increasing reliance on onlie service delivery.

Agencies that continue to play music on hold, where that cost is not included in the overall telephone system cost, play recorded music or broadcast radio or television in a public space will need to contact APRA directly to determine what type of licence may be required.  This should be done prior to 30 June 2017 to ensure a breach of the Copyright Act 1968 does not occur

More information regarding licence types can be found on the APRA AMCOS website at WHICH LICENCE IS FOR YOU?  To speak to an APRA AMCOS staff member see their Contact Us page for further details.

Agencies that do not enter into a licence agreement with APRA after 30 June 2017 cannot play recorded music or broadbast radio or television in a public space.

Further Information

Senior Policy Officer, State Copyright Agreements

State Records of South Australia
GPO Box 464
ADELAIDE  SA  5001


Phone - 8204 8762
Email - srsaexecutive@sa.gov.au

 

 

 

 

 

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