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Racing NSW Introduces Race Field Copyright Fee

8th September 2009 7:58 am GMT

Australia's Racing NSW is looking to enforce intellectual property rights in its thoroughbred race fields by requiring wagering operators to apply for a non-exclusive licence for their use, imposing a 3% race filed copyright fee beginning October 1st.

Racing NSW maintains that it employs significant labour at considerable expense in collecting, compiling, verifying, managing and recording information relating to thoroughbred horses, races and race meetings.

By reason of the skill, judgment and knowledge used in the process, Racing NSW believes that copyright subsists in relation to those compilations as literary works.

Beginning on October 1st 2009, betting providers and other will be required to pay a licence fee, calculated at 3% of the licensee's net assessable turnover for the one year term, divided into twelve equal monthly instalments and payable monthly in arrears.

Australia's Virtual Form Guide, which first discovered the unannounced changes to NSW Race Field conditions last week, described the move as €˜sneaky' for making wagering operators sign up to the non-compulsory copyright agreement as a necessary element of the presently compulsory race field agreement.

Racing NSW is currently embroiled in a number of court proceedings instigated by Betfair and Sportsbet over the method used for calculating race field fees, and it is expected that this latest unilateral decision will also not go unchallenged.

Racing NSW's revised standard conditions for Australian wagering operators is available for download here.

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