Deny access to websites infringing copyright: EU court to ISPs

Mar 29, 2014 09:40 IST

European Union Court on 27 March 2014 ruled that Internet Service Providers (ISP) can legally deny access to websites that infringe copyright to their customers. The ruling is aimed at limiting online piracy.

In its directive the Court also said that ISPs must ensure that this blocking activity of the websites may not deprive users from the possibility of lawfully access to the information available.
The Court of Justice of the European Union in Luxembourg in its decision upheld the decision of an Austrian Court to compel an ISP to deny its customers access to the website. This decision was made on the basis of the EU laws and regulations provide power to ISPs to deny access to such websites.

The European Court in its judgment has also asked the Austrian Supreme Court to interpret the Copyright Directives of EU and the basic rights enshrined in the EU legislation.

This decision came in the backdrop of the decision of the judges of Austrian court that prohibited UPC Telekabel Wein (an internet service provider of Austria) from providing access to its customers to the sites of two companies that holds movie rights. Earlier, the two companies approached the Austrian court with a plea to prohibit access to a website where some of their copyright films could be viewed and downloaded for free.

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