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Australia Businesses The Almighty Buck IT

Australian Government Releases Report Into IT Price Fixing 125

elphie007 writes "Fourteen months after the Australian Parliament announced an inquiry into the disparity between IT pricing for Australian consumers, the Committee's final report has been published. The report highlights the importance of IT in Australia, and that Australian consumers are frequently shafted in an uncomfortable manner when it comes to purchasing IT goods and services. With recommendations ranging from the removal of parallel importation restrictions to the possible banning of geo-blocking services, could this mean the end of US bound Adobe shopping trips and the beginning of pricing equality for Australian IT consumers? More reports/analysis is available here and here."
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Australian Government Releases Report Into IT Price Fixing

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  • Re:Logistics (Score:5, Informative)

    by crafty.munchkin ( 1220528 ) on Monday July 29, 2013 @09:07AM (#44411339)
    Amusing, but it is absolutely ridiculous that if you want to buy 3 copies of Adobe Creative Suite in Australia, it's cheaper to fly to the US and buy them there, then fly straight back. And that's just one example, there's even the Steam Ripoffs [] site to show how much we get shafted for games.
  • Re:the fuck? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Joce640k ( 829181 ) on Monday July 29, 2013 @09:10AM (#44411377) Homepage

    Why is a government interfering with private entities' ability to price things differently in different countries?

    Because dem entities are trying to use the government's laws to sue people over importing the products from other countries where it's cheaper.

  • by OzPeter ( 195038 ) on Monday July 29, 2013 @09:11AM (#44411383)

    Take that all you people that think Australia being founded by a bunch of criminals was a bad thing :P

    4 Copyright, circumvention, competition, and remedies

    Recommendation 4 The Committee recommends that the parallel importation restrictions still found in the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) be lifted, and that the parallel importation defence in the Trade Marks Act 1995 (Cth) be reviewed and xiii broadened to ensure it is effective in allowing the importation of genuine goods.

    Recommendation 5 The Committee recommends that the Australian Government amend the Copyright Act’s section 10(1) anti-circumvention provisions to clarify and secure consumers’ rights to circumvent technological protection measures that control geographic market segmentation.

    Recommendation 6 The Committee further recommends that the Australian Government investigate options to educate Australian consumers and businesses as to:

    • * the extent to which they may circumvent geoblocking mechanisms in order to access cheaper legitimate goods;
    • * the tools and techniques which they may use to do so; and
    • *the way in which their rights under the Australian Consumer Law may be affected should they choose to do so.

    Recommendation 7 The Committee recommends that the Australian Government, in conjunction with relevant agencies, consider the creation of a ‘right of resale’ in relation to digitally distributed content, and clarification of ‘fair use’ rights for consumers, businesses, and educational institutions, including restrictions on vendors’ ability to ‘lock’ digital content into a particular ecosystem.

    Recommendation 8 The Committee recommends the repeal of section 51(3) of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010.

    Recommendation 9 The Committee recommends that the Australian Government consider enacting a ban on geoblocking as an option of last resort, should persistent market failure exist in spite of the changes to the Competition and Consumer Act and the Copyright Act recommended in this report.

    Recommendation 10 That the Australian Government investigate the feasibility of amending the Competition and Consumer Act so that contracts or terms of service which seek to enforce geoblocking are considered void.

  • by CastrTroy ( 595695 ) on Monday July 29, 2013 @09:14AM (#44411415) Homepage
    This happens in a lot of places, not just Australia. In Canada, Microsoft often charges more for licenses. However, if you try to order stuff through, they will say that they don't ship the item to Canada. Even though they will ship just about everything else, as long as you pay the shipping charges.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 29, 2013 @09:47AM (#44411647)

    Problem solved! (cracks open a Fosters)

    Haha, nice try mate, but we Aussies don't actually drink that crap!

  • Re:Logistics (Score:5, Informative)

    by Arker ( 91948 ) on Monday July 29, 2013 @10:25AM (#44412027) Homepage

    Why has the market not solved it?

    Because there is no free market at work here. "Intellectual property law" prevents it.

Disraeli was pretty close: actually, there are Lies, Damn lies, Statistics, Benchmarks, and Delivery dates.