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Jaani Riordan speaks at CIPIL

Thursday, December 1, 2016


“Hyperlinking and website blocking injunctions: recent copyright case law from the European and English courts

Jaani's lecture critically evaluated recent case law concerning internet copyright infringement and online intermediaries. Its focus will be the decision of the CJEU in GS Media BV v Sanoma Media Netherlands BV (Case C-160/15, EU:C:2016:644), which concerns the liability of website operators who post hyperlinks to infringing content. It will be argued that GS Media represents an incoherent and unprincipled approach to the scope of the ‘communication to the public’ right, and is unworkable in practice. Secondly, this lecture will consider the recent decision of the Court of Appeal in Cartier International AG v British Sky Broadcasting Ltd [2016] EWCA Civ 658, which held that internet service providers and other intermediaries owe duties derived from EU law to take reasonable and proportionate steps to block their subscribers from accessing infringing content upon request. Despite the Court of Appeal’s judgment, serious questions persist about the correct basis and scope of this jurisdiction and its limits, including: (i) the relationship between injunctive relief and monetary liability; (ii) who should bear the cost of injunctive relief; and (iii) what alternatives the applicant should be required to explore before pursuing an intermediary.