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Copyright Licence - Local Government

Councils serve their communities by providing diverse facilities and services. Possessing a CopyrightAccess licence gives councils the ability to copy and share third party works to perform routine functions, without delay or risk of copyright infringement. For example:

  • News and magazine articles: Councils will be able to copy and share community, regional and national articles
  • Sponsorship and grant applications: Councils who include articles as part of council submissions can do so legally
  • General office sharing and reporting: A licence validates the inclusion of tables, graphs, images, extracts and articles in reports and on the council intranet
  • Environment and Sustainability: Emailing of third-party research, journal articles and conference papers or presenting them digitally
  • Planning and civil works: Use of survey plans, journal articles, commissioned reports
  • Training of council staff: Distribution of textbook content, standards
  • Library services: Making copies of published material for council use and library services
  • Community engagement: Use of excerpts, images, photos, graphs etc in council marketing material and publications

Business Case: copyright licence solution
For all the above activities, a copyright licence is required if permission from each copyright owner is not obtained. The business case for a council to adopt a copyright licence is strong and has both an organisational and broader societal benifits.

A) Council benefit: an annual copyright licence delivers for Local Government a single cost effective solution for complying with copyright law:

  • Coverage – instant validation for what staff and systems are already doing with content
  • Communication – allows integration of much more third party content, legitimately
  • Reputation – enhance governance and social responsibility profile

B) Societal benefit: Copyright is a legal construct and a commercial business model for encouraging creativity and cultural output. Respect for copyright is characteristic of a democratic economy and compliance via a collective licensing model benefits all:

  • Strengthening commerce and economy – Australia’s copyright industries employ 900,000 people and generate economic value equal to 9% of gross domestic product ($97.7billion) .
  • Protecting creativity and cultural output – Creators and publishers of original works do so because copyright delivers a means by which those works can be nurtured and protected.
  • Respect for rights – Copyright is enshrined in the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights. Article 27 (2): "Everyone has the right to the protection of the moral and material interests resulting from any scientific, literary or artistic production of which he is the author."


Is your Organisation Infringing Copyright? PDF | 111kB
Introduction to Copyright Law in Australia PDF | 72kB


Please contact our Commercial Licensing team on 1800 066 844 (toll free within Australia) or 02 9394 7600. You can also email us at