Last Updated: 09 Oct, 2023     Views: 25

Fair dealing exceptions and statutory licences only allow people to copy a "fair" amount of a work, not a substantial part of it. This is to ensure that the part of the work that has been copied isn't injurious or prejudicial to the copyright holder. You cannot copy or distribute something that could be regarded as a "substantial" part of the work, regardless of the size of the amount being copied.

Legislation does not provide a definition for what constitutes a "substantial" amount when copying third-party content. However, court interpretations have generally gone with the amount being an “important, distinctive or essential part” (Australian Copyright Council, 2022, p. 2). Consequently, "substantial" could be surprisingly small depending on the context, e.g. a diagram, chords from a song riff.

Australian Copyright Council. (2022). Infringement: Actions, remedies, offences and penalties,-Remedies,-Offences-and-Penalties-INFO063/