Sunday 4 December 2011

HADOPI: news hot off the press

From one of the 1709 Blog team's new members, Asim Singh, comes some pretty hot news from France. As Asim explains:
"Just days after President Sarkozy expressed his firm desire to update the HADOPI law to enable this body to act beyond its original P2P file-sharing mandate to reach DDL (direct downloading) and streaming sites, and one week after the CJEU’s seminal Scarlet ruling, news emerged in France that three professional bodies representing film producers (Association des producteurs du cinéma), distributors (Fédération nationale des distributeurs de films) and video publishers (Syndicat de l’édition video numérique) have taken matters into their own hands.

Availing themselves of the provisions of a section of the French Intellectual Property Code that was part of the HADOPI I law (Act of 12 June 2009), the APC, FNDF and SEVN have issued a writ against the major internet access providers (Orange, Free, Numericable, etc.) as well as Google, Yahoo and Microsoft seeking their cooperation in “disappearing” four websites (,, et with which they take issue. Section L.336-2 reads as follows:.
“In the presence of an infringement of copyright or a neighbouring right due to [“occasionné par” in French] the content of an online public communication service [a website], the High Court, ruling in the form of référés [ a specific form of legal proceedings] may order, upon action by rightsholders [or representative bodies] any measures appropriate to prevent or put an end to such infringement against any person capable of contributing to remedying the situation.”
The case-law on this provision is not exactly legion. The Court of Appeals of Paris handed down a decision on 3 May 2011 in which the provision was relied upon against Google Suggest and its habit of suggesting terms such as “torrent”, “megaupload” and “rapidshare”; the Court held that the requirements set out by the provision were not satisfied in that Google Suggest was merely a tool and was not itself the source of infringement as required by Section L.336-2.

The first hearing in the new case is scheduled for December 15, 2011".

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