THE owner of the Super Radio Network broadcaster is being taken to court over allegations radio stations in Dubbo and Young used unlicensed computer software.
Global software manufacturers Microsoft and Adobe have launched a civil lawsuit seeking damages over an alleged breach of intellectual property (copyright) that will be heard in Sydney on April 3.
Super Radio Network owner Bill Caralis, his wife, Pamela Ann Caralis, ZooFM and Western Broadcasters (2DU) have been named as respondents in the suit. Mr Caralis owns more than 30 radio stations in regional NSW and Queensland, including 2TM and 92.9FM in Tamworth, 2AD in Armidale, 2VM in Moree, 2NZ in Inverell, 2MO in Gunnedah and others in Mudgee, Parkes and Orange, and 2HD in Newcastle.
He also owns Sydney radio station 2SM, the hub from which radio veteran John Laws presents his morning show to regional stations across the network.
Industry association Business Software Alliance (BSA), acting on behalf of Microsoft and Adobe, launched an investigation after receiving information that unlicensed copies of their software were being used in AM and FM radio stations at Dubbo and Young.
“That would, of course, be an infringement of copyright, or software piracy, so we investigated further,” BSA Australia committee chairman Clayton Noble said.
“Federal Court of Australia proceedings have now begun alleging the Super Radio Network stations in Dubbo and Young used unlicenced copies of Microsoft and Adobe software.
“The documents filed also claim that Mr Caralis authorised the infringements.
“Under Australian copyright law, a person that authorises infringement of copyright is also liable for that infringement.”
Mr Noble said the investigation was ongoing.
“A court order application has been lodged asking the court to demand that other stations within the Super Radio Network produce documents about the status of their software use and whether that software is licenced,” he said.
BSA operates a hotline for members of the public to report software piracy, offering rewards of up to $5000 for information about the use of unlicensed software, which led to what Mr Noble referred to as “a successful outcome”.