European Court of Justice decisions of July 29, 2019 (C-469/17  and C-516/17) The abuse of copyright as a “legal weapon” to suppress press reports is not a new development – for decades authors and rightholders have used their exclusive rights to prevent the publication of unpleasant information. The situation in practice The situation is always…

The turbulent relationship between copyright law and the freedoms of information and expression lies at the heart of the recent decision of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) in the case Spiegel Online GmbH v Volker Beck (C 516/17). Part I of this blogpost critically overviewed the CJEU’s main principles of analysis…

On 29 July 2019, the CJEU delivered its hotly awaited decision in the case Spiegel Online GmbH v Volker Beck (C 516/17). The decision is part of a trilogy of preliminary references raised by the German courts focusing on copyright exceptions and the interaction of copyright law with fundamental rights (Pelham, C‑476/17 and Funke Medien…

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…

Introduction and background Most internet pages are put together from different elements and can include text, pictures or videos which are originally displayed on websites and stored on servers of third parties. Visitors to the internet page usually cannot distinguish between content that is stored on servers controlled by the webpage owner and that stored…

On 10 January 2019, the Advocate General (AG) Szpunar delivered his opinion in the case Spiegel Online GmbH v Volker Beck (C 516/17).  Part I of this blogpost explored the AG’s stance in relation to the degree of latitude left to Member States when implementing copyright exceptions and the ambit of the news reporting exception…

On 10 January 2019, the Advocate General (AG) Szpunar delivered his opinion in the case Spiegel Online GmbH v Volker Beck (C 516/17). The case is part of a trilogy of preliminary references raised by the German courts focusing on copyright exceptions and the interaction of copyright law with fundamental rights (Pelham, C‑476/17 and Funke…

Introduction The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) has ruled in Bastei Lübbe GmbH & Co. KG v. Michael Strotzer (C-149/17) that “the owner of an internet connection used for copyright infringements” cannot invoke his fundamental right to private life to circumvent the possible enforcement of remedies against such infringements. This judgment is…

1          Introduction The right of communication to the public (Article 3 Information Society Directive) is well-established in the Court of Justice of the European Union’s (“Court”) case-law: it no longer only encompasses more physical matters, such as broadcasting of television in hotels (SGAE, C-306/05), but also digital matters, such as linking to copyright infringing content (GS Media,…

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…