In June, Legal Bytes reported [Federal Court Awards YouTube Summary Judgment in Viacom Copyright Infringement Case]that a United States federal court ruled in favor of YouTube and Google in the billion-dollar case brought by Viacom on a summary judgment motion. Just last month, we again reported that Viacom had filed notice of its intention to appeal that ruling [Viacom Appeals Google/YouTube Ruling], and a companion article written by Joseph I. (“Joe”) Rosenbaum [Viacom Appeals YouTube Copyright Ruling] has been posted on the Media & Entertainment Newsletter of the International Law Office.
Now in Spain, the Spanish Federal Court sitting in Madrid has dismissed charges brought by the Spanish broadcasting company Telecinco (Gestevision Telecinco SA), alleging that YouTube was liable for copyright infringement resulting from users uploading content and material that infringed the copyright of others. Mediaset, the Italian company that is the majority shareholder of Telecinco, is also involved in a copyright infringement action involving such video uploads, although no ruling has yet issued in that case. The ruling from the Spanish Federal Court comes on the heels of a ruling at the end of last year in France that found Google guilty of copyright infringement, but in that case, books were being scanned and excerpts put online without first obtaining permission or consent from the copyright owner. That said, earlier this month, a court in Germany ruled against Google, holding it liable for videos that were subject to the copyright of others and uploaded on YouTube.
The Spanish court essentially agreed with YouTube’s argument that it is a content-hosting platform, not directly responsible for content uploaded or posted by others. Without appearing flippant, Legal Bytes notes that, similar to Viacom’s decision to appeal the ruling in the United States, everyone who is on the losing side of these battles is (or has indicated an intention of) appealing the ruling against them.
Need to understand user-generated content, uploading videos or other content, rights of authors, and creators of content, and understand them in multiple jurisdictions around the world? Contact Joseph I. (“Joe”) Rosenbaum, or the Rimon attorney with whom you regularly work. We can help.