Without much noise, France recently adopted Act Nr. 2012-287 of 1st March 2012 relating to the digital exploitation of unavailable books of the 20th century. Contrary to past initiatives from the French lawmaker, the Act does not relate to orphan works, but rather to out-of-commerce works. Or, more precisely: books. According to the explanatory memorandum…

On 15 March 2012 the CJEU has ruled two cases where it had been asked to decide whether producers of phonograms (or the collecting society on their behalf) are entitled to obtain equitable remuneration when a user allows its clients to hear the phonogram by way of background music in a place subject to his…

The Proposal for a Directive on certain permitted uses of orphan works, introduced in the European Parliament on 24 May 2011, has been following its merry way through the legislative meanders ever since. The debates around the text of the proposal are heating up right now, for the European Commission pushes for rapid adoption while…

On May 22 of this year Directive 2001/29/EC was exactly 10 years old – a birthday largely gone unnoticed. The ‘Copyright Directive’ or ‘Information Society Directive’ (for experts: ‘InfoSoc Directive’) marked an important stage in the process of harmonization of copyright and related rights in the European Union. In contrast to earlier directives that dealt…

By Mireille van Eechoud, Institute for Information Law (IViR) Of the many questions addressed by the Court in its Painer judgment (Case C-145/10) the most impact will probably be on the construction of an EU wide originality criterion for copyright works. Infopaq, BSA and Murphy went before, seemingly extending the originality standard implicit in the…

On the 28 of October the European Commission adopted a Recommendation on the digitisation and online accessibility of cultural material and digital preservation. The Recommendation follows up on a similar Recommendation from 2006, updating for new developments such as the launch in 2008 of Europeana and the adoption of the Commission’s proposal for a Directive…

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…

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…

The question, whether software licences for computer programs that were purchased in an intangible form (via download from the sellers’ server) can be resold by the first acquirer and used by the second buyer without consent of the right holder, has to be interpreted in light of the computer program directive 2009/24/EG. A full summary…

It cannot have evaded the notice of anyone interested in copyright matters that Judge Chin at a New York federal district court recently has rejected the so-called Google Book Settlement (GBS). While holding that “the digitization of books and the creation of a universal digital library would benefit many”, Judge Chin argued that the GBS…