This World Book and Copyright Day, take the time to learn how upcoming copyright changes may affect you.

23 April 2018

On 1 January 2019, changes to Australia’s copyright duration laws will come into effect.

Amendments to the Copyright Act 1968 will apply new standard terms of copyright protection in Australia to a range of copyright materials. This includes literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works, sound recordings, films and Crown copyright materials.

These new standard terms will apply to:

  • new copyright material created from 1 January 2019
  • existing copyright material that is not published or otherwise made public before 1 January 2019, and
  • Crown (Government) copyright material.

It is important to note:

  • If copyright in material has already expired by 1 January 2019, it will not be revived.
  • For the first time in Australia, copyright terms will apply to materials that are not published (or otherwise made public).
  • For some older unpublished materials, the new terms will have the effect that copyright in the material has expired by 1 January 2019.
  • When copyright expires, the material falls into the ‘public domain’ and may be freely used by anyone.

If you own copyright in an older unpublished work, sound recording or film, you may wish to consider making your material public before 1 January 2019 to maintain copyright protection.

New standard terms of copyright from 1 January 2019

 50 years of its making

Find out more:

Duration of copyright


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Table setting out the new copyright terms that will apply from 1 January 2019 under the Copyright Amendment (Disability Access and Other Measures) Act 2017.