German Federal Supreme Court’s decisions of 21 February 2019 (ref.: I ZR 98/17, I ZR 99/17 and I ZR 15/18) Protection of moral rights in Germany, in particular the right to prohibit distortion of the work Moral rights derived from copyright are not harmonized within the European Union. Rather, every EU member state has developed…

Just a few days before Christmas, Advocate General Hogan published his opinion that the German related right (neighbouring right) in favour of press publishers is unenforceable for formal reasons. In his view, it should have been notified to the European Commission before the law was passed in Germany. The final word is now with the…

Since 1 April 2018, the Portability Regulation has prohibited geo-blocking of online content within the European Union under certain requirements. The regulation guarantees the unrestricted access to (paid) subscribed online content of all European citizens, regardless of where they are present in EU territory. The presence must be “temporary”. Providers of fee-based online content are…

The debate on Art. 13 Draft DSM Directive has gained speed, after the Commission’s initial 2016 proposal was supplemented by the Council’s proposal of May 25, 2018, and after the European Parliament’s JURI Committee on June 20, 2018 also voted on an own proposal for Art. 13 Draft DSM Directive. The plenary vote is due…

Decision of the German Bundesgerichtshof of September 21, 2017, file no. I ZR 11/16: “Vorschaubilder III” (“Thumbnails III”). In this decision, the Bundesgerichtshof (“BGH”) applies the latest CJEU case law on liability for linking, namely Svensson (C-466/12), GS Media (C-160/15), Filmspeler (C-527/15) and BREIN/Ziggo (C-610/15) to search engines and in particular to Google’s picture search….

In an in-depth analysis for the European Parliament, the author has looked at liability of online service providers with regard to infringements concerning copyright protected content. In particular, the paper tries to answer the question of whether regulatory action is needed in relation to the liability of online service providers for copyright protected content. The…

Decision Landgericht (District Court) Hamburg of November 18, 2016 (file no. 310 O 402/16) Introduction In GS Media vs. Sanoma, the CJEU recently ruled that linking to illegal content may be considered to be a “communication to the public” and can therefore constitute copyright infringement (C-160/15 of 8 September 2016). The District Court Hamburg has…

Decision of the German Bundesgerichtshof of July 28, 2016, file no. I ZR 9/15: “Auf fett getrimmt” (“trimmed to the fat”). In accordance with the CJEU decision in Deckmyn v. Vrijheidsfonds/Vandersteen (C-201/13), the Bundesgerichtshof (“BGH”) as Germany’s highest civil court supported a broad interpretation of the term “parody” in its recent decision “Auf fett getrimmt”,…

The legal issues surrounding the publication of Internet search results is a topic of great interest for copyright experts.  In this interview, originally published in German in the journal Neue Juristische Wochenschrift, and reproduced here with the kind permission of Verlag C.H. Beck, Professor Jan Bernd Nordemann discusses a recent German case on this topic….

1. Introduction The internet has been a challenge for copyright since its advent two decades ago. Many questions have now been answered. It is surprising, however, that one of the main internet technologies, hyperlinking, is still the subject of hotly debated issues under EU copyright law, which the CJEU has yet to answer. 2. Linking…