A Clare case of political gall

Gotta give the Curran gal marks for gall.

Clare Curran, Labour’s spokesperson on Communications and IT, might have kept quiet about the reversing of decisions made when the Clark Gang was running the show.

But not only did she issue a media statement to welcome the Key Government’s decision to intervene on section 92A of the Copyright Act.

She said this had been done at the behest of Labour, obviously forgetting how section 92A was the inglorious product of work by Judith Tizard (who was deservedly kicked into political oblivion by her electorate).

“Labour has been calling on the Government to urgently work with stakeholders to ensure a workable code of practice is in place, and to establish a third party to resolve copyright disputes.

“National’s redrafting of section 92A will hopefully ensure there is a process to make it work.

“This was the intent of the amendment I twice attempted to introduce in Parliament over the recent weeks.

“Labour is holding talks with key stakeholders tomorrow night and acknowledges the importance of copyright issues and the need for future policy.”

The statement concluded:

“It’s good news that National finally took a leadership role around this contentious issue,” Clare Curran said.

For those who missed the news (not many in the blogosphere, Alf imagines ), Cabinet decided yesterday that section 92A of the Copyright Act 1994 will not come into force on 27 March as scheduled.

Insted, it will be amended to address areas of concern.

Section 92A requires internet service providers (ISPs) to have a policy to terminate the internet account of repeat copyright infringers in appropriate circumstances.

Commerce Minister Simon Power said the legislation had been put in place to combat unlawful file-sharing which facilitates copyright infringement on a large scale.

“Section 92A traverses an important issue in an emerging area of copyright law reform both in New Zealand and internationally,” Mr Power said.

“This behaviour is very costly to New Zealand’s creative industries and needs to be addressed.”

But allowing section 92A to come into force in its current format – the format stubbornly championed by Tizard – “would not be appropriate given the level of uncertainty around its operation.”

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