30 July 2008

Australian visa holders face iPod checks at airport

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People entering Australia may be subject to checks of their iPods or mp3 players for pirated material. Those reaching the country on an Australian visa may face prison if illegal music is found on the device.

In addition, laptops will be checked for the material, under new plans proposed by the Federal Government. The scheme will also mean people with huge song libraries could have action taken against them for commercial piracy. Peter Coroneos, chief executive of the Internet Industry Association, said: "It could be that people get sent to jail for being in possession of commercial-scale quantities of copied music."

The plans have been damned by one critic, Christopher Zinn, a spokesperson for Choice. He said the move is "out of order", describing it as draconian. The Australian tourist board has recently launched a campaign to attract more people into the country, hoping to boost the number of people getting an Australian tourist visa, according to the Canberra Times.

Anyone travelling to Australia needs an ETA Visa. Use Visa Bureau’s online visa application service to get yours today.

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