German Court of First instance rules that YouTube is only liable for secondary liability for user’s infringing uploads, but must prevent future infringements of identified works by screening of and implementing a word filter for new uploads. In this test run case the German composers and lyricists collecting society GEMA claimed that 12 songs of…

The German Federal Court of Justice rejects liability for image search thumbnails even if they are indexed on websites showing the images without permission as long as other websites did so with the rights holder’s consent. The first landmark case involving thumbnail previews of Google’s image search function in Germany (Vorschaubilder I, 2010) had dealt…

Copyright law has developed in close connection with technological evolution. This is particularly true of digital technologies, especially the Internet, which, since the mid-1990s, has generated both vast opportunities and enormous challenges for the copyright system. Geographical distance is no longer an obstacle to the dissemination of works, which can now take place at virtually…

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…

On 10 May, the District Court of The Hague extended an earlier ruling with regard to two access providers to block The Pirate Bay to several major Dutch access providers.  The providers lament the ruling and consider appealing it, but soon more than 90% of the Dutch market blocks the infamous website. On the same…

In recent years, Italian courts have struggled to create a new figure, the ‘active hosting provider,’ whereby providers that do not offer any content themselves, can nonetheless be held liable with regard to their (commercial) activities in relation to infringing content that was uploaded by users. On the one hand, it could be argued that…

“The ruling confirms the exclusion of ideas from software copyright protection and enlightens certain grey zones of the Software Directive.” The protection of computer programs is one of the nicest paradoxes of copyright law. Even if the protection of the computer programs as literary works has been established in the European and in the international…

UK: High Court Chancery Division, 23 March 2012, Seaton v Seddon. The members of the reggae band Musical Youth brought a case against their former solicitors with regards to the royalties due from a hit single: “Pass the Dutchie”. This song was an arrangement of another piece of music, entitled “Pass the Kouchie”. The claim in…

“It can be argued that the Commission looks at this type of decisions as a mandate to legislate, at least to a certain extent. The possibility of further harmonization based on a possible CJEU decision cannot therefore be ruled out.” On 29 March 2012 the Advocate General (AG) Jääskinen delivered his Opinion in Case C-5/11…