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Hong Kong launches 3-month consultation on parody rules

To put some teeth into Copyright law.

According to a report, the Government launched a three-month public consultation today on the treatment of parody under the Copyright Ordinance.

Speaking to the media, Secretary for Commerce & Economic Development Gregory So said parody is now commonly seen on the Internet and there are wide-ranging views on how it should be treated under the copyright regime, with ongoing discussions and developments in overseas countries.

"In pace with the rapid development of the knowledge-based economy, we keep our copyright regime under regular review to ensure that it continues to evolve and serve the best interests of Hong Kong," he said.

The document proposes three options, which are: Clarification of existing criminal sanction provisions under the Copyright Ordinance, introduction of a criminal exemption for parody, and introduction of a fair dealing exception for parody.

It also details key issues and the current legal situation in Hong Kong as well as major overseas jurisdictions.

The consultation exercise aims to find ways to handle parody considering present day circumstances, to build a consensus in the community, and to strike a balance between copyright protection and freedom of expression, he added.

The Government will also arrange public forums during the consultation period, which will end on October 15.

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