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Filtering away infringement: copyright, injunctions & the role of ISPs

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“The underlying key question – can technology solve this problem and, if so, should technology be allowed to determine law? – remains unanswered.”

On 2-4 July 2014 Information Influx, the 25th anniversary conference of the Institute for Information Law, (IViR) was held in Amsterdam.

As part of the conference, on the morning of Thursday, 3 July a panel entitled Filtering away Infringement: Copyright, Injunctions and the Role of ISPs was held. The panel was set up as a mini mock trial of a topic that has been especially controversial in the area of online copyright infringement in recent years, particularly in Europe: that of injunctive orders imposed on internet intermediaries for th [...]

CJEU in UPC Telekabel Wien: A totally legal court order…to do the impossible

Christina-Angelopoulos“This indicates the main danger of the ruling, that of fragmentation. This was foreseen by the Austrian referring court, which suggested that guidelines assessing the proportionality of blocking measures be laid down by the CJEU – that would have been welcome indeed! That absence is certainly the biggest deficiency of the ruling.”

Last Thursday, the Court of Justice of the European Union issued its judgment on Austria’s Oberster Gerichtshof reference for a preliminary ruling in Case C-314/12, UPC Telekabel Wien GmbH v Constantin Film Verleih GmbH.   

The case begun when film production companies Constantin Film Verheih and Wega Filmproduktionsgesellschaft GmbH noticed their copy [...]

UK Supreme Court Asks CJEU Whether the Internet is Legal

angelopoulos“Before finalising its decision however, it is seeking the CJEU’s input on whether end users, who view web-pages on their computers without downloading or printing them, are committing infringements of copyright if they lack a licence from the rightholder.”

On 29 June 2013 the UK Supreme Court referred a series of questions in Case C-360/13 Public Relations Consultants Association Limited v The Newspaper Licensing Agency Limited and others, otherwise known as the Meltwater case, to the Court of Justice of the EU. The case examines whether Meltwater News, an electronic media monitoring service, was implicating its subscribers in copyright infringement by distributing reports that include [...]

CJEU Advocate General sides with Google in data protection dispute

Christina Angelopoulos“AG Jääskinen declined to classify Google as a “controller” of the data included on the pages indexed by its search engine within the meaning of article 1(d) of the Data Protection Directive.”

The CJEU’s Advocate General Niilo Jääskinen issued an Opinion  on 25 June advising the Court to refrain from allowing citizens the right to require Google to block links to content they find embarrassing and declining the existence of a “right to be forgotten” in existing EU legislation.

The case concerned the publication in 1998 in the printed edition of a widely circulated Barcelona newspaper of two announcements concerning a real estate auction in connection with proceedings related [...]

Google: “We made history in a very good way for the citizens of France.”

Christina Angelopoulos“Yet, in contrast to the legislative measures that had been previously contemplated, this deal is only of a stand-alone character and will not affect the situation of smaller aggregators.”

A while back we reported on the clash between search giant Google and media organisations in, among other countries, France over the former’s news aggregating service Google News. French publishing associations have been demanding the introduction of a ‘snippeting right’ in France which would oblige content aggregators to obtain a license, and thus share revenue, for the privilege of display links to their articles. The underlying idea is that those who profit from the distribution of content sho [...]

The Link Wars Rage on: France and Germany Consider Exclusive Right over Snippets

“According to the current formulation of the draft law, material quoted by humans for commentary and analysis, as opposed to that automatically selected by a computer, may be copied freely.”

The link wars have once again broken out in Europe. In August, the German cabinet gave its backing to a draft law allowing news publishers to collect compensation for the republication of headlines and the introductory sentences of articles by aggregators and search engines. Under the proposal, which would protect content for one year, news publishers would be able to license out snippeting rights for a royalty and start proceedings against those found to infringe their newfound neighbouring right. T [...]

Dutch University Blocks BitTorrent Pre-Emptively Breaking New Net Neutrality Law

In the course of the implementation of the European telecommunications package, a set of proposals has been introduced to the Dutch Telecommunications Law (Telecommunicatiewet) to safeguard an open and secure internet for the Netherlands. The proposals include a net neutrality provision (Articles 7.4a and VIb of the draft amendment), an anti-wiretapping provision (Article 11.2a of the draft amendment) and an internet connection provision (Article 7.6a of the draft amendment). A broad majority in the Dutch parliament (Tweede Kamer) voted in favour of the amendments last June. The proposals will also have to be adopted by the Dutch Senate (Eerste Kamer) before entering into force. The vote bef [...]

Commission Recommendation on the Digitisation and Online Accessibility of Cultural Material and Digital Preservation

On the 28 of October the European Commission adopted a Recommendation on the digitisation and online accessibility of cultural material and digital preservation. The Recommendation follows up on a similar Recommendation from 2006, updating for new developments such as the launch in 2008 of Europeana and the adoption of the Commission’s proposal for a Directive on orphan works in May 2011. The Recommendation acknowledges the importance of digitisation for making Europe’s cultural productions more widely available and thereby boosting the growth of Europe’s creative industries. It accordingly challenges Member States to step up their digitisation efforts.

On an organisational level, the [...]

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