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Historic conviction of the administrators of a downloads site: Youkioske Judgment handed down by the Spanish National High Court (Criminal Chamber) on 5 March 2015

Patricia MariscalOn 5 March 2015, the Spanish National High Court convicted the administrators of the website Youkioske of an aggravated intellectual property offence and of promoting and establishing a criminal organisation.  The judgment can be deemed ‘historic’ since it is the first time that the operators of a downloads site have faced a penalty of this magnitude – no less than 6 years’ imprisonment, a fine equivalent to a period of 20 months at a rate of 10 Euros per day, disqualification from operating websites professionally for a period of five years and the attachment of the almost 200,000 Euros that had been made from the unlawful activities.  It does not end there, however, for the guilt [...]

The GEMA-Presumption and the burden of non liquet (Germany)

“The judgment casts a spotlight on a distinct feature of collective rights management in Germany and the difficulties that may ensue for creators and users of musical creations who want to license such material under an alternative licensing scheme.”

The case that came before the Local Court Frankfurt/Main concerned a dispute between the German Society for musical performing and mechanical reproduction rights (Gesellschaft für musikalische Aufführungs- und mechanische Vervielfältigungsrechte, GEMA) and a song contest organiser (defendant). In the course of a music contest, entrants were asked to submit a song through the defendant’s website and permit for the song to being exploited ( [...]

What’s the size of small parts? (Germany)

By Benjamin Schütze, Institute of Legal Informatics, Leibniz Universität Hannover

“Since its introduction in 2003, the provision marks the centre of a controversy between schools and institutions of higher education and copyright holders, especially publishing houses marketing a scientific – educational portfolio.”

About the right to make available small parts of a work for illustration purposes for teaching in schools and higher education and how it is interpreted by OLG Stuttgart in Alfred Kröner Verlag GmbH & Co. KG v Fernuniversität in Hagen (4 U 171/11).

The dispute between the parties centres on the question of whether Fernuniversität Hagen shall be permitted under § 52a Germ [...]

Intermediary classic decided in favor of intermediary

The Dutch Court of Appeal in Leeuwarden has ruled in favor of an online market platform with regard to its liability for intellectual property infringements and the burden of policing for unlawful use of its platform. The case between Stokke, the producer of the Tripp Trapp highchair, and Marktplaats, an eBay subsidiary and the most popular Dutch online market, is a long-running intermediary liability classic in the Netherlands, with earlier District Court rulings in 2006 and 2007.

Using recent judgments about intermediary liability of the ECJ, the Court rejects a long variety of arguments why the intermediary should not be considered passive enough to be considered a hosting provider (Artic [...]

Hosting providers: passive vs. active

We are experiencing a new trend by Italian first instance courts in addressing the issue of liability of hosting providers for contents posted by users in copyright infringement cases. The new approach is likely to impose providers of video sharing platforms (such as YouTube, Dailymotion and others) dramatic changes in their model of business, with relevant consequences for the whole information society.

In recent judgments, courts have in fact elaborated the theory that the provision contained in art. 14 of the E-Commerce Directive that exempts hosting providers from liability in case of unlawful activities carried out by the users of their service, applies only to “passive” hosting provide [...]

Blocking The Pirate Bay: will the Dutch court ruling hold in appeal?

By Axel Arnbak, IViR. Last week, a Dutch district court ruled that two internet access providers, Ziggo & XS4ALL, have to block customers’ access to the IP-addresses and (sub)domains of The Pirate Bay. The providers will appeal the ruling of the District Court of The Hague. Amidst global PR-hurricanes on the legality of website blocking, sparked by several court cases and American legislative initiatives, now seems perfect time to put the Dutch blocking case into perspective.

Essentially, the 11 January 2012 case BREIN v. Ziggo/XS4ALL (Dutch) isn’t about copyright, but about enforcement. BREIN (Dutch for ‘Brain’), a foundation protecting the interests of the Dutch copyright industry, [...]

No more dance for Baila!

The Tribunal of Rome has rejected the appeal brought by Reti Televisive Italiane (RTI, Mediaset Group) and Endemol, respectively the broadcaster and the producer of the Mediaset TV program “Baila!”, against the first instance decision in the urgent proceeding for provisional measures of the same court, holding that the program was an unauthorized copy of the popular – and previous in time – TV program “Ballando con le Stelle” (Translation: “Dancing with the Stars” ) of the national TV broadcaster, RAI.

The case started the beginning of September. Media reported that in the claim for provisional measures against RTI and Endemol, the popular show presenter of Ballando con le Stelle ( [...]

“In order to fight copyright infringements, ISPs may be asked to render specific websites inaccessible to their subscribers”

This sentence summarizes quite well the decision of the Antwerp Court of Appeal of 26 September 2011 which it is abstracted from.

The Belgian Anti-piracy Federation filed a cease and desist action against Telenet and Belgacom, two Belgian ISPs, in order to make them block The Pirate Bay’s websites in their respective networks.

In first instance, the President of the Commercial Court of Antwerp rejected the claims as he deemed that the requested measures were disproportionate.

The Court of Appeal overruled the decision and granted an injunction on basis of art. 87, §1, al.2 of the Belgian Copyright Act, which transposes art. 8, §3 of the InfoSoc Directive 2001/29/CE, and which provides th [...]

UK: ITV Broadcasting Ltd v TV Catchup Ltd (live-streaming)

UK: ITV Broadcasting Ltd v TV Catchup Ltd High Court of England and Wales (Patents Court), 18 July 2011

Live-streaming: In a case on internet live-streaming retransmission of TV broadcasts and films, the High Court ruled that the introduction in the UK Copyright Act of a general right of communication to the public with respect to broadcasts was not invalidly enacted. The Court also reached the provisional conclusion that the retransmission of broadcasts and films via live streaming amounts to an act of communication to the public, but referred the question to the European Court of Justice for clarification. In the view of the Court, live streaming retransmission amounts to authorisation of [...]

UK: Future v. Edge (High Court Chancery Division), 13 june 2011

Edge LogoUK: Future Publishing Ltd v. Edge Interactive Media Inc., High Court Chancery Division, 13 June 2011.

Copyright in logo: US companies involved in the business of computer games had infringed copyright in the logo of a computer gaming magazine (“EDGE”), by using it on letterhead, website and games. The Court found the logo sufficiently original to qualify for copyright protection. Defendant’s use amounted to copyright infringement, passing-off and breach of a trading agreement with the publisher of the magazine. (Stavroula Karapapa &  Maurizio Borghi, Brunel University).

For the full text of this case click here.

A summary of this case will be posted on soon.

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