Copyright law compared to Electoral Finance Act

05:44, Mar 23 2009

Calls to scrap the controversial new internet copyright law are increasing ahead of the Government's March 27 deadline for a decision on its future.

United Future leader Peter Dunne, the minister of revenue, today compared it with the ill-fated Electoral Finance Act (EFA).

"The EFA arguably started out with good intentions but those became overwhelmed by the impracticalities of the legislation," he said on Radio New Zealand.

"In the end it became a pariah, it literally brought a government down and Parliament has now repealed it. I would have thought we would have learned a lesson."

Mr Dunne is the second government minister to oppose the new law.

On Saturday ACT leader Rodney Hide, minister of local government and regulatory responsibility, said he would recommend its repeal.

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"I am taking steps to get rid of it," he said at ACT's annual conference.

"It should be repealed. . .it is fundamentally flawed because it breaches the principles of natural justice."

Section 92A of the new Copyright Amendment Act has upset the internet community, which said it could force the closure of websites following any accusation of breach of copyright, even if it was not proven.

The Government said last month it would delay implementation of Section 92A until March 27 to give the community time to come up with a workable code of practice.

It said it agreement could not be reached it would suspend the section.

Commerce minister Simon Power's latest comment was that negotiations within the internet community were continuing and he would not pre-judge the outcome.

- NZPA