Friday, 24 February 2017

Swedish appellate court allows web blocking

The Swedish Court Of Appeal has overturned the ruling in the District Court Of Stockholm in 2015 which had dismissed an application that would have forced internet service providers to block The Pirate Bay and other platforms linked to music and other piracy  - a move opposed Swedish ISP Bredbandsbolaget

The Patent And Market Court of Appeal has now ruled in favour of music and movie companies, ordering Bredbandsbolaget to implement web-blocking of both The Pirate Bay and another piracy site called Swefilmer. The court confirmed that their judgement was in part influenced by the web-block injunctions that have been ordered elsewhere in the European Union.

Torrentfreak reports that judge Christine Lager said in a statement: "In today's judgment, the Patent And Market Court held that right holders such as film and music companies can obtain a court order in Sweden against an ISP, which forces the ISP to take measures to prevent copyright infringement committed by others on the internet. The decision is based in EU law and Swedish Law should be interpreted in the light of EU law. Similar injunctions have already been announced, such as in Denmark, Finland, France and the UK, but the verdict today is the first of its kind in Sweden".

The verdict decision is not open to appeal. 
The Advocate General Maciej Szpunar recently opined to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) that The Pirate Bay makes acts of communication to the public on a referral by the Dutch Supreme Court (Hoge Raad der Nederlanden) in Stichting Brein, C-610/15, and that web blocking by depriving internet users of access to The Pirate Bay would be proportionate to the significance and seriousness of the copyright infringements committed on that site.

AND see this new article on the IP Kat from Nedim Malovic (Sandart & Partners) on the decision and that the court noted that it is indeed possible under EU law for rightsholders to obtain an injunction [pursuant to Article 8(3) of the InfoSoc Directive] against an intermediary whose services are used to commit a copyright infringement, even if the ISP only provides its customers with internet access.

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