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Friday, June 30, 2017


The Southern African Freelancers’ Association (SAFREA) advocates for and supports freelance workers in the communications fields. It also provides resources, tools, training and networking to strengthen freelance careers.

SAFREA has extended its support to lobbying efforts from the Academic and Non-Fiction Authors in South Africa (ANFASA) and the South African Guild of Actors (SAGA) regarding concerns about the new Copyright Amendment Bill, submitted to parliament today.

“The effects of the bill on freelancers and all professionals seeking copyright freedoms are immeasurable at this point, but are concerning to say the least,” says SAFREA Chair Laura Rawden.

As an association that advocates for and supports the rights of its members, all of whom are media freelancers, SAFREA appeals to the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee for Trade and Industry to consider the unsatisfactory aspects of this bill. Specifically, the use of unauthorised copies and lack of royalties delivered to authors from the sale and licensing of their books. This has a direct and negative impact on writers, journalists, editors, newspapers, filmmakers, news writers and scholarly authors.

For actors, concerns are centred on an individual's right to their own image. “The lack of this protection in South Africa underpins many of the exploitative practices currently driving our local television and film industry,” says SAGA Vice Chair Adrian Galley.

Senior members Geof Kirby and Gareth Griffiths engaged with the bill on behalf of SAFREA when issues pertaining to members’ rights and best interests were initially raised in 2015. Kirby remains involved regarding photographer-specific copyright issues. SAFREA hopes all these voices will be heard and understood. “We need to stand in solidarity on this,” says Rawden.