• Opinion Editorial by Simon Bush in the AFR titled: Creative Nation Under Threat (8 February, 2012)
  • The recent Federal Court decision to allow Optus to rebroadcast or time-shift television programs with as little as a two-minute delay to its digital and mobile customers has created a massive headache for content owners, sports administrators, internet service providers (ISPs) and the Gillard government.

    Federal Court justice Steven Rares has unwittingly decided that creative works and intellectual property (IP) on the internet and in mobile form are next to worthless once broadcast on TV– at least if it is consumed for “personal use”.

    Copyright reforms in 2006 legalised format shifting of music (the iPod law) from a legally bought CD to another device and time-shifting of broadcast free-to-air TV (finally legalising the VCR or DVD-R). But Rares has gone beyond the intent of the legislators.

    Copyright is the basis by which we have rewarded invention and creativity for the past 300 years and Prime Minister Julia Gillard has observed: “Producing innovative goods and services, and being more creative in the way we do things, will increase our productivity, improve our standard of living and ensure we sustain our international competitiveness.”

    The internet poses substantial policy and regulatory challenges, and many countries are working on policies to curb content theft and maintain domestic creativity by allowing IP to be commercialised in a digital word.

    The full article can be read by clicking here.

  • Opinion Editorial I wrote for the Australian Financial Review titled: NBN is an opportunity and a threat to Australia’s creative and content industries (Thursday, 22nd September 2011)
  • If you’ve hired or bought a DVD lately, you’ll know that almost every movie starts with a warning against downloading pirated content from the Internet.

    Regrettably, this illegal practice is rife in Australia and is conservatively estimated to cost the TV and film industry more than $250 million in lost revenue every year.

    But while it’s bad now, imagine what it’s going to be like when Australians have access to the hyper fast National Broadband Network: illegal movie downloads will take just seconds rather than hours.

    What is at stake is the industry’s $6.1 billion contribution to the Australian economy, employing 50,000 Australians.

    Read the full article by clicking here.

  • Opinion Editorial by Simon Bush in Crikey titled : Interconnected online services remain a government pipedream (4 September, 2009)
  • "Successive federal governments have talked about building citizen centric online services and making life easier. Despite the rhetoric, it is getting worse not better...

    Why can’t we achieve the seemingly simple concept of a single citizen entry point? According to the 2006 e-Government Strategy, under the section of "The Vision for 2010":

    It will be possible to group diverse transactions and complete them at the same time, without navigating the underlying structure and complexity of government. People will be able to interact with many areas of government without needing to understand exactly which agencies deliver which services

    It is clear that this will not be achieved by 2010 and the traditional bureaucratic silos must be broken down for any benefits to be realised.

    Finance Minister Lindsay Tanner in May last year said: "The most important outcome we can achieve through greater interoperability between agencies is to deliver more integrated government services to citizens. We are committed to streamlining and enhancing citizens’ engagement with government services online."

    But even though Finance’s Australian Government Information Management Office (AGIMO) is building a central government online service portal at an expense of $20 million plus, no agency has the authority to stop departments investing in new online services in isolation and there's no requirement that new online services are delivered through a central portal."

    The full article by Simon Bush can be read by clicking here.
  • UK's the Guardian newspaper on London's Lord Mayoral election (2 May, 2008):
  • "When Lynton Crosby was asked, after the 2005 election, whether he had ever met the Queen, he said no. "She doesn't vote and she doesn't live in one of our target seats so there's no point. It was a joke but sums up the Crosby style. The man whose campaign may make Boris Johnson mayor of London later today plays politics as other Australians play cricket: tough, focused and determined to win." More
  • Australian Financial Review on Tanner $6bn ICT overhaul (Feb 5, 2008):
  • "The federal government will centralise control of the $6 billion it spends each year on computing and communications as part of a dramatic overhaul by Finance Minister Lindsay Tanner that will also introduce new approval and monitoring processes for major information technology projects." More
  • Opinion Editorial by Simon Bush in Crikey e-zine on the government's classification approach to the internet (Nov 2, 2007):
  • "Government censorship of the internet took another significant but unheralded step forward last Friday with the release of guidelines for industry having to put in place systems for restricting access for certain internet and mobile content." More
  • Australian Financial Review on social networking, web 2.0 and political campaigning (Aug 8, 2007):
  • "He calls himself CitizenTube, his real name is Steve Grove and he is helping John Howard and Kevin Rudd harness the power of the internet." More
  • Opinion Editorial by Simon Bush as appeared in the Canberra Times on senior public servants needing to understand ICT (Apr 3, 2007).
  • "I have observed a significant shift over recent years within the Federal Government which extends to the role of ministers and secretaries in their understanding and involvement with Information and Communication Technology procurement and implementations." More
  • Australian Financial Review on the Australia US Free Trade Agreement and Copyright provisions (Mar 6, 2006):
  • "The federal government may be unable to enact key recommendations from a parliamentary report into copyright because of the Free Trade Agreement with the United States, experts say." More
  • Australian Financial Review on Customs and industry push to crack down on IP pirates (Oct 22, 2005):
  • "Customs officers could soon be confiscating bootlegged DVDs along with wood, food and holiday contraband as the movie industry mobilises to regain about $400 million in annual sales lost to pirate copies." More