It appears Australia may have not one, but two test cases to ascertain the strength and scope of Australia’s anti-piracy provision, introduced last year. Our previous article reporting the introduction of that provision in Australia can be accessed here.
In summary, the provision under the Copyright Act 1968 allows copyright owners to seek an injunction requiring internet service providers to block access to any ‘online location’ (such as websites) operated outside of Australia if its ‘primary purpose’ is to ‘infringe, or facilitate an infringement’ of copyright in Australia.
Village Roadshow (Roadshow Films Pty Ltd), a film distributor, lodged an application in the Federal Court yesterday afternoon seeking to block access to SolarMovie, a website that offers free streaming of movies and television shows.
It appears Foxtel (Foxtel Management Pty Ltd) has also followed suit having separately commenced Federal Court proceedings yesterday to block access to at least four websites, including the torrent site The Pirate Bay.
If Village Roadshow and Foxtel are successful, Australian service providers such as Telstra, Optus and TPG will be required to block Australian users from accessing those websites.
Watch this space for updates.