THE OWNER of two Dubbo radio stations is being taken to court over allegations 2DU and ZOO FM 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) which will be heard in Sydney on April 3.
Supernetwork owner Bill Caralis, his wife Pamela Ann Caralis, Zoo Fm Pty Ltd and Western Broadcasters (2DU) have all been named as respondents in the suit.
Also named are two radio stations at Young, 93.9 FM and 2LF.
Industry association Business Software Alliance, acting on behalf of Microsoft and Adobe, launched an investigation after receiving information that unlicensed copies of their software were being used in 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 chair Clayton Noble said.
"Federal Court of Australia proceedings have now begun alleging the Supernetwork 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 Caralis owns more than 30 radio stations in regional NSW and Queensland, including 2MG at Mudgee, 2PK at Parkes, 2EL at Orange, 2HD at Newcastle and 2TM at Tamworth.
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.
Mr Noble said the investigation was ongoing.
“A court order application has been lodged asking the court to demand that other stations within the Supernetwork 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 that led to what Mr Noble referred to as “a successful outcome”.
The Daily Liberal contacted 2DU and ZOO FM Program Director Chris Mathieson for a response. He declined to comment and directed the Daily Liberal to Mr Caralis.
At the time of going to press, Mr Caralis had not returned a call from the Daily Liberal.