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Our man Leghorn introduced me to the adage “you can’t stop the signal.” The government of New South Wales, Australia doesn’t get it, doesn’t want to get it, or gets it and doesn’t give a damn. reports that “The NSW government amended the Firearms Act 1996 and the Weapons Prohibition Act 1998 last week, issuing several additions under the Firearms and Weapons Prohibition Legislation Amendment Bill 2015 which includes the creation of the new offence relating to 3D printed guns.” If an Aussie caught with same in the state is looking at some serious jail time . . .

Under the amendment, it is now considered an offence to possess digital blueprints for the manufacture of firearms on 3D printers or electronic milling machines.

The new offence carries a maximum penalty of 14 years’ imprisonment . . .

The Bill defines a digital blueprint as any type of digital or electronic reproduction of a technical drawing of the design of an object, and considers possession of a digital blueprint to include the possession of a computer or data storage device holding or containing the blueprint or of a document in which the blueprint is recorded; as well as control of the blueprint held in a computer that is in the possession of another person, be inside or outside of NSW . . .

The amended Bill also covers the acts of downloading or uploading the plans to, or from, file sharing services.

Needless to say there’s a police carve-out. Also needless to say, Big Brother. The ironic thing: by banning a form of information, the NSW government is giving Aussies good cause to want a 3D printed gun to defend themselves against government tyranny. Good luck with that.

Meanwhile, Defense Distributed’s Cody Wilson – whose digital software company was named in the report – tells TTAG that “In the name of progress they have foreclosed an entire division of human endeavor. This is another example of how a neo-progressive state has, in the name of liberalism, created an liberal nightmare.” [h/t JA]

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  1. Yeah, and Obama is doing the same thing here. They’re taking their cue from China…seems totalitarian communism is all the rage these days.

    • In fairness, we have some similar odd laws. Last I heard if you own a firearm and also have detailed instructions, drawings, etc, for making it full auto, you are guilty of owning such a weapon. Or conspiracy to produce, or something like that.

  2. Time for a shitstorm of offshore emails to all their government anti-gun traitors with clickable links purporting to be porn sites and auto insurance deals, but are actually downloads of the print files. Then send the IP addresses to the OZ gun nazis and watch the fun over a cold pint or two. They made the law right? No excuses.

  3. Guy killed me, Mal. He killed me with a sword. How weird is that? I got… a short span here… they destroyed my equipment but I have a back-up unit… bottom of the complex, right over the generator. Hard to get to. I know they missed it. They can’t stop the signal, Mal. They can never stop the signal.

  4. So what’s the favorite song in OZ? If I only had a brain? Australia-ISIS is coming. Have fun… do ya’ suppose it’s hard to infiltrate a country the size of the continental USA with a population less than Texas?

  5. So wait, if anyone outside of NSW has the prints on a computer, it is collective possession by everyone in NSW who has a computer and a modem and a link to the page where the prints can be found? Umm hmm, umm hmm. And Cody Wilson is now a felon in NSW? Leastways, that’s how I interpret what you’ve said.

  6. That act is so badly worded a PDF scan of a book or manual would suffice, even if it couldn’t be directly used by a 3d printer or milling machine.

    But law makers will argue that vagueness gives them flexibility.

    • Flexibility, yes.

      Reliability (ie to get convictions), no.

      Prosecutors won’t go the whole way on this as they know the magistrates and judges will just toss 95% of them right out the door.

      Having knowledge or capability to do something shouldn’t be a crime. Only acting on that should be.

      Best they might hope for is to pin possession of plans etc on to a wider conspiracy charge.

      I’m sure I’ve got a book around here somewhere with the basic plans for an atomic weapon…

  7. Would it be illegal to email plans to every politician that backed this amendment? Purely for academic purposes I’m curious what the implications would be.

  8. When are they going to ban possession of a CNC machine with programmable software, or regular blueprints and access to a conventional lathe and milling machine, or internet access and hand tools, or a library card and the ability to read?

    • When? As the tech advances and becomes more ubiquitous, threatening corporate interests, that’s when.

      It’s fully realizable to print your own car, drugs, sneakers, whatever. As that reality comes to the fore, corporations will be faced with losing their beings. If you’re under 50 with an average life expectancy, barring a miracle, 3D printing will become heavily regulated before you die. Too democratic for all the folks who hold the levers of power, let alone the people who pull their strings.

      • Making all the non-DRM (so to say) 3-D printers all the more valuable.

        There’s no practical way for them to ‘control’ what a 3-D printer can or cannot print.

        Stepper motors, digital controllers, etc. it’s pointless.

        Now, I am aware of the tech that some color photocopier machines use to ‘lock out’ the printing of currency, but I don’t see any way to apply that to physical objects.

      • Really simple with state-of-the-shelf tech. All printers must be registered. All things to be printed must be run through a government database before the print is “allowed”.

        They could do this tomorrow if they wanted to. The infrastructure is already in place.

  9. Hey Aussie’s, what do you have when Australia finally goes away?

    Anyone saying it won’t, or offering any certainty for how long it will last IS LYING.


    By then, firearms might not be sold any more, firearms might not be made any more. You better have the ideas, the tools, the materials, the blue-prints, and the desire to make them long before then, and anyone claiming you don’t need them / can’t have them, is disarming you for your first Civil War, or your trip to the oven.

  10. So, paper blueprints are fine? Digital blueprints for blank-fire nailguns ok too? What about 3D printed BBQ lighters, the “high capacity assault matches” & most favourable murder weapon of our great nation?

    No word yet on corrupt customs officials paid to look the other way when you want to just straight up import an AK, kilos of drugs or exotic animals?

  11. 14 years in prison for being “in control” of a computer file on a server located anywhere on the planet….. Now that is draconian repression that would have made Stalin weep for joy. This is exactly the sort of mindless, hysterical and pointless overreaction Cody Wilson was trying to provoke when he started his 3d printed gun project.

    • That goes to show the level of fear the authorities have when a longer prison term is imposed for the possession of information than for aggravated assault, armed robbery, and all but the worst cases a of murder.

      No wonder our “Dear Leaders” are regarded as “Global Village Idiots”.

    • This is exactly the sort of mindless, hysterical and pointless overreaction Cody Wilson was trying to provoke when he started his 3d printed gun project.

      Which is exactly why the vast majority of the maker community wished the self-aggrandizing little darling would have kept his damned pie-hole shut. He’s accomplished abso-effen-lutely nothing of substance, but has draw a whole lot of attention to a hobby that is gaining traction, but doesn’t need some government lunkheads coming to regulate it, before it gets too big to regulate. Oh, and he Kardashianed himself into talkshows and what not.

      So sad that kids don’t all read The Art of War in HS anymore. Cody Wilson is, at most generous, a perfect example of shitty OpSec. In reality, he’s likely the result of a horrid education and bad parenting, that left him unable to see anything but his own shallow fame, and have no understanding of the damage that he would do to thousands of people who actually make their own firearms. As opposed to the community of FB ‘likes’ and hipsters who will never, ever, build that lousy gun. Go look, there’s much better stuff out there, difference being, smart people know not to constantly taunt the 400# gorilla.

      Australians, I’m sorry, the gov reaction was utterly predictable, and it’s coming to the US very soon. When you want to know why this is happening, understand the nature of government, and what happens when some guy looking to be famous goes up and flips off the king, without the majority already prepared to deal with the known consequences. Then, you can thank Cody Wilson.

  12. So, would one be “in possession ” if one received it in an e-mail? What if the file wasn’t requested by the recipient? Isn’t this akin to book-banning?

  13. Maybe someone should start a campaign where people email/fax 3D gun blueprints to various politicians, journalists, and academics in Australia. Maybe they could even notify the local popo to let them know who to round up too.

    Surely there are many other hilarious variations on this theme yet to be devised..

    • Ironically, the sentencing guideline in Australia for possessing child pornography on a computer is only 5 years for a first offense. So having the plans for a 3D gun is nearly three times as bad as kiddie porn. There’s a set of priorities for you.

  14. 14 years for blueprints of guns?
    I feel sorry for them – or at least the few remaining there that wished for freedom. 14 years for possession of a “blueprint” is pure oppression. Meanwhile – they can’t stop it. People will only encrypt those files to protect themselves. Are they going to ban encryption too? Are they going to ban proxies? Internet cafes and free wifi?

    Australian government’s quest to control knowledge from everyone but themselves.

  15. And the drones still remain indoctrinated to claim this garbage is somehow an improvement (! of all things) over run of the mill ISIS dudes. None of whom seem the slightest concern about their “citizenry” having access to whatever kit they can get their hands on; whether gun or bomb.

    There’s a lot in Western thought and tradition that’s worth fighting ISIS over, but virtually nothing of it is still practiced nor relevant in the contemporary West. All we now are left with, is a clusterF of totalitarian Dystopias existing for no other reason than to allow banksters, lawyers, taxfeeders and other scum to feed on the dying carcass of their ever more heavily indoctrinated captive prey. Who the F cares if it all gets blown up and burned to the ground? There’s nothing of any redeeming value left anyway.

  16. This is not communism/socialism or any ism…it is tyranny. The same thing our forefathers here in the USA fought against. This was the reason for the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812. This is the reason for the Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights. Funny thing when one takes a close look at our allies who supposedly practice the same freedoms we do; they really do not.

  17. So someone can have a paper copy of a blueprint, and be 100% legal, but once they put it into CAD its illegal? Fantastic logic there.

  18. Australians should have realized when they were burying their guns that if you are burying them it’s probably about time to start using them.


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