On 20 January, the Dutch court of appeals (Hof Amsterdam) gave its preliminary ruling in the case of Tom Kabinet. In this ruling the court had to consider whether the CJEU UsedSoft rationale applies to eBooks as well. Without giving a final judgment, the court indicated that it considers it quite likely that exhaustion of rights, as described in art 4(2) of the Infosoc Directive, also applies to intangible goods, such as eBooks.
Tom Kabinet, a Dutch company, started a business in ‘used’ eBooks. The owner of an eBook can sell his copy through the website of Tom Kabinet. In order to sell used eBooks, the owner needs to declare that he obtained the copy legally, by agreeing to Tom Kabinet [...]
When it comes to copyright it is a game of all or nothing. During the term that a copyright exists, the owner of a copyright has a monopoly on the work due to the exclusive rights of reproduction, distribution and communication to the public. When the copyright protection expires and the work enters the public domain, all exclusive rights vanish and the former copyright owner is left empty-handed.
On January 1st 2015, the works of the world-famous Dutch artist Piet Mondriaan (along with several other significant artists including Edvard Munch, best known for ‘the scream’) fell into the public domain. The colourful grid work paintings that Mondriaan is so well known for, can now, in prin [...]
Guest blog by Prof. Dr D.J.G. Visser, Institute for Private Law, Leiden University
“This could well mean that several Dutch collecting societies, in particular those representing actors, screenwriters and directors (Norma, Lira and Vevam) can no longer claim remuneration for cable (re)transmission of programs broadcast by Dutch broadcasters.”
The cable distribution of Dutch television programs as it currently takes place in The Netherlands is no longer a ‘cable retransmission’ in the sense of the EU Satellite and Cable (SatCab) Directive, because it is no longer precede [...]
“The activity of the operator of a dedicated meta search engine (…) comes close to the manufacture of a parasitical competing product.”
Christmas somewhat overshadowed the publication of a particularly interesting CJEU decision: case C-202/12 (Innoweb), dealing with the legal protection of databases in relation to meta search engines. The judgment was published on 19 december 2013.
The preliminary questions referred to the CJEU arose in Dutch civil proceedings against Innoweb, a company that operates the dedicated car meta search engine ‘GasPedaal’ (literally ‘accelerator pedal’), which enables users to simultaneously carry out searches in several collections (databases) of ca [...]
It is a common fact that the sex-industry, along with the arms industry, is a driving force behind many new developments. Porn is a major force on the internet and it also shouldn’t come as a surprise that important legal questions surface in porn-related cases. One example is the recent commotion in Germany about tens of thousands of cease and desist letters for watching a porn-stream on the internet (see this earlier blog) and another example is a judgment of the Amsterdam Court of Appeal in a case about playboy-photo’s that were leaked to or found by other media an [...]
“”The difficulty also lies in the fact that (to our knowledge) no levy system within the EU provided before Padawan for such a distinction and that the structure of the payment system did/does not lend itself easily to making such a distinction.”
There’s nothing wrong with a private copying levy, the CJEU decided in SGAE/Padawan, but “the indiscriminate application of the private copying levy to all types of digital reproduction equipment, devices and media, including cases in which such equipment is acquired by persons other than natural persons for purposes clearly unrelated to private copying, is incompatible with the directive.”
An interesting refinement of a controversial legal d [...]
“The occasional use of an unusual expression – such as “she has a black belt in shopping, so uh …” to describe the shopping behavior of Endstra’s wife – is not enough to make a copyrighted work of an otherwise banal or trivial designed conversation.”
The 2008 decision of the Dutch Supreme Court in the Endstra-tapes case was, in the words of Professor Hugenholtz , “the most controversial decision of the decade. The case concerned the question whether the so called ‘backseat conversations,’ a series of conversations between the resale estate investor Willem Endstra and the Dutch police on [...]
In an interesting case about the portrait rights of the legendary Dutch football (soccer) player Johan Cruijff, the Supreme Court of the Netherlands recently ruled that a portrait right is not an exclusive right and that a commercial interest can make a difference, unless a reasonable remuneration has already been offered.
Johan Cruijff argued that the publication by the defendant, a Dutch publisher, of a photo book about the years that Cruijff played for Ajax Amsterdam, infringed his ‘right of [...]
“The viewer will not experience it as real and will even consider it to be weird, amateurish or even ridiculous.”
In a case about the use of the ‘house style’ of the Dutch police, the summary proceedings judge District Court Amsterdam ruled this week that the Dutch State has to give permission to the producer of the television series ‘Doctor Tinus’ for the use of the police-logo, the police car-striping and other elements of the house style of the Dutch police.
In this case, the Dutch State took the position that the State doesn’t have to give permission for the usage of elements of the ‘police house style’ and the other features of the police in fictional movies or s [...]
“The law does not allow for additional protection of the maker of a work against so-called slavish imitation of a style or of elements of style.”
Supreme Court of the Netherlands, 29 March 2013 (Duijsens/Broeren).
Although the legal concept of coat-tail riding is usually associated with trademark law, it is certainly not unfamiliar to copyright law. But whereas in trademark law the mere association with a popular brand is used to sell the non-identical brand of the coat-tail rider, in copyright law it is often the style of an artist or a work , that is used as a means to stay as close to these work(s) without literally imitating them.
Unfortunately for those whose coat-tails are r [...]