Dear Mr Rudd, it’s me again…

The Hon Kevin Rudd
Prime Minister
PO Box 6022
House of Representatives
Parliament House
Canberra ACT 2600

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industry – and produce a report (with more pages than I could be bothered counting) – all based on figures that are so outdated?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.

Yours sincerely,
Dee White
Proud Australian Author

To see the actual letter Dee sent to the Prime Minister, Mr Rudd, go to her BLOGSITE

Australian authored and published novels

Australian authored and published novels

7 thoughts on “Dear Mr Rudd, it’s me again…

  1. I agree with Courts, the productivity commission’s goal is to follow their own economic rationalist theories. They have no interest in the writing & publishing industry & basically don’t care what happens to it. They measure everything in terms of financial losses & gains & are clueless about anything else.

  2. Skaldi,

    You are right, but one of the reasons we set up this blog is that we are finding it very hard to get media interest in the ‘other’ side of the story. Great idea to email current affairs programs like 60 minutes – maybe if lots of us do it, they might take an interest.


  3. This data does not surprise me. It seems the Commission had made its decision long before they bothered to look at any data at all. Then they looked at the figures available, and picked out whatever supported their case.
    The Commission is not doing this because they believe in their hearts that this is what the industry needs. They are doing it because they believe in the theory of the free market. But with culture and art not being economically driven, it’s terrifying to think what effect this kind of rationalism could have.

  4. If we want more attention we need to get the TV media involved more. I’ve emailed 60 minutes ( and asked them to look into it and included this website. If they are to do anything they need more people emailing them asking them to do the exact same thing.

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