Dear Mr Rudd,
I wrote to you back in April this year expressing my concerns about the Productivity Commission’s proposal to remove PIRs 12 months from the date of a book’s publication.
Unfortunately, since my last letter, things have got EVEN WORSE!
The Productivity Commission has declared that on the evidence before it (even though it admits there is not adequate current financial data available), removing Parallel Import Restrictions all together is going to be best for the Australian consumer.
The latest report claims that most of the benefits of PIR protection accrue to publishers, authors – and even printers. Are these people not consumers as well?
The Commission attempts to separate PIRs from Copyright (even though they are contained within the Copyright Act) yet territorial copyright will very definitely be affected.
Due to the absence of adequate current statistical data, the Commission has been forced to back it’s position by quoting Prices Surveillance Authority surveys from 1989 and ACCC reports dating back as far as 2001.
Let’s put vested interests aside for a moment ( I admit I’m on the side of authors, publishers, booksellers not involved in the Coalition for Cheaper Books and our local printers.) My question is this…..
How can your senior economists recommend such sweeping changes to an entire industry – and produce a report (with more pages than I could be bothered counting) – all based on figures that are so outdated?
I’m no business guru – just an author surviving on a very average annual salary (that almost meets the cost of my kid’s school fees) – but even I would think that no business would contemplate change without studying the full financial implications – without examining the current statistics.
I hope you don’t mind me giving out your address Mr Rudd because I’m sure there are lots of people who will want to write to you about this issue.
Proud Australian Author
Tell our Prime Minister that Australian books are worth saving.
The Hon Kevin Rudd
PO Box 6022
House of Representatives
Canberra ACT 2600