Optus Case Overturned on Appeal

The current edition of Inspire reports on a claim made by the organisers of the two main football codes for copyright infringement of certain television broadcasts by Optus in its TV Now service. The trial judge exonerated Optus. However, in a decision given on 27 April 2012, the Full Court of the Federal Court in National Rugby League Investments Pty Limited v Singtel Optus Pty Ltd [2012] FCAFC 59 overturned this decision. The Full Court held that Optus was the maker of copies of the television broadcasts, probably jointly with the Optus subscriber, but could not avail itself of the benefit of the defence of s111 of the Copyright Act. Thus Optus has been held liable for copyright infringement in recording and streaming television broadcasts via its TV Now service. This case will be reported on fully in the next edition of Inspire.