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Webinar on Copyright and Trademark Litigation

We are delighted to announce that on 24 April 2014 Kluwer Law International is hosting a webinar on two major cases in the field of copyright and trademark litigation.

The event is presented by IP expert Wouter Pors, partner in, and Head of, the IP department at Bird & Bird in The Hague, The Netherlands.

Wouter will discuss two recent CJEU judgments. The first one discussed is  Martin y Paz v. David Depuydt  (CJEU 19-9-2013, C-661/11) dealing with the termination of licence and exhaustion. The second case is on hyperlinks and copyright with a thorough analysis on the Svensson v. Retriever Sverige decision (CJEU 13-2-2014, C-466/12).

He will furthermore demonstrate how countries worldwide [...]

The Netherlands: a hyperlink to unfindable files

bdpb“In that case, the publication of an hyperlink is, in principle, not an autonomous communication to the public”

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 [...]

Switzerland proposes new measures against piracy

Yani BenhamouThe Swiss working group on Copyright (AGUR12) released his report on December 2013 related to management of rights at the digital age. This should lead to a legal basis for a notice and takedown procedure and thus reduce the supply of illegal content, while downloading from illegal sources should remain legal.

The original mandate goes back to a postulate referred by the Federal Council Simonetta Sommaruga on August 2012 to optimize the collective management of rights, in particular to adapt copyright law to technical developments. After more than a year of discussion, representatives of artists, economists and consumers made nine recommendations, addressed either to rightholders and collec [...]

IViR Anniversary Conference (Information Influx), 2-4 July 2014

Although the actual founding of the Institute for Information Law is shrouded in myth and mystery, in 2014 it will be 25 years ago that IViR was officially established as a research centre at the University of Amsterdam. IViR’s 25th birthday will be celebrated next year in Amsterdam from 2 to 4 July, with a major international conference on the myriad challenges facing information law today: Information Influx.

When IViR was set up a quarter of a century ago, the digital transition was only just underway. Since then, our societies have been undergoing enormous changes in the modes of expression, organization and (re)use of information. Traditional roles of producers, intermediaries, users an [...]

Switzerland: No special law for social networks

Yani Benhamou“The report reflects the general tendency of Swiss legislative authorities to avoid legislative process and to favor a flexible approach of existing regulations.”

The Swiss Federal Council reported a few weeks ago, in response to a postulate referred by the National Council in 2011 related to the legal situation of social media, that Social networks such as Twitter, Facebook and blogs present legislation with new challenges but cannot be overcome by a separate special law. However a detailed examination will be carried out to determine whether new regulations are needed. This relates to the enforcement of the law, the liability of service providers and some aspects of data protection.

Proble [...]

The scope of ‘commercial scale’ in Estonian criminal law

Elise-Vasamae-KCBIn a relatively recent judgement in a criminal case, the Supreme Court of Estonia ruled that that the terms  ‘trade scale’ and  ‘commercial scale’ are not synonymous. The concept ‘commercial scale’ in criminal law cannot be interpreted in such a broad sense as the concept ‘trade scale’. 

A. Gubinski allegedly committed a copyright infringement, therewith violating section 222″1 of the Estonian Penal Code. Gubinski argued that did not commit a crime since (i) it had not been proven that the files found in his computer could be regarded as a copyrightable computer program and (ii) that he did not gain profit as a result of possessing the computer program. The prosecutor argued that it was c [...]

EU: Playing Sherlock, or spotting copyright consequences in patent cases

anaramalho“The most obvious one is the fact that, if enhanced cooperation is permitted in the area of creation of unitary titles, then a similar solution could be envisaged for copyright.”

Last month, the CJEU came to a decision in joined cases C-274/11 and C-295/11, where the claims of Spain and Italy against enhanced cooperation for the creation of a unitary patent were dismissed. Did this blogger just take the wrong exit on the IP interstate and arrived in patent city? Not really. While this is a patent decision, some of its splinters might indeed land in copyright town.

In a nutshell, 25 Member States of the EU decided to establish enhanced cooperation between them in the context of creating a [...]

NL: Confusing slavish imitation of a painting style is not illegitimate.

Duijs Broer small“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 [...]

ECHR: Copyright vs. Freedom of Expression II (The Pirate Bay)

Dirk Voorhoof   and  Inger Hoedt-RasmussenECHR Decision of the ECtHR (5th section) of 19 February 2013. Case of Fredrik Neij and Peter Sunde Kolmisoppi (The Pirate Bay) v. Sweden, Appl. nr. 40397/12.

By Dirk Voorhoof, Ghent University and Inger Høedt-Rasmussen, Copenhagen Business School.

The criminal conviction of the co-founders of The Pirate Bay for infringement of copyright does not violate Article 10 ECHR.

Only a few weeks after the Strasbourg Court’s judgment in the case of Ashby Donald and others v. France (ECtHR 10 January 2013, see our blogs on the KluwerCopyrightBlog and the ECHR-Blog ) the Court has decided a new case of conflicting rights between copyright and freedom of expression.

The case concerned the complaint b [...]

Can e-lending land itself a spot under the public lending right?

elending-ebooks“However, in none of the studied countries, e-lending activities rely on a statutory copyright or lending right exception.”

By Kelly Breemen and Vicky Breemen, Institute for Information Law, Amsterdam (IViR).

Public libraries in various countries are increasingly involved in e-lending practices. Thus far, these practices are largely based on contractual agreements between the parties concerned rather than on a copyright exception or limitation. But why would public libraries not be allowed to lend e-books under the same conditions that apply to physical books, that is, without prior authorization but against equitable remuneration?

In the context of plans for developing a national digita [...]

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