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Government Puts Forth Distribution Limits

Issued: May 01 2009
The government has put forth a proposal which would limit the number of copies of copyrighted works that could be made or distributed.
The copying and distribution offence of the Copyright (Amendment) Bill 2009 would not apply to infringing copies which total fewer than the proposed number of copies. The copying and distribution section was added to the Copyright Ordinance in June 2007 and applies to anyone who, without permission of the copyright owner, distributes an infringing copy of a work in a book, magazine, periodical or newspaper resulting in a financial loss to the owner of the copyright. The ordinance will come into operation once the numeric limits of such copying and distribution are prescribed.
The numeric limits in the Copyright (Amendment) Bill were drawn up by the HKSAR Government with input from the Hong Kong Copyright Licensing Association and the Hong Kong Reprographic Rights Licensing Society.
For newspapers, magazines and periodicals (excluding academic journals), a maximum of 500 A4-size pages embodying infringing copies of copyright works within any 14-day period are allowed, according to the proposed numeric limits.
For books and academic journals, users are permitted to copy or distribute a maximum total retail value of HK$6,000 (US$775) of infringing copies of more than 25% of the total pages of a single book (or an academic journal) within any 180-day period.



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