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First off today, Garbiele Steinhauser at The Wall Street Journal reports that the European Court of Justice, the highest court in the EU, has ruled that operators of free, public wifi can not be held liable when their networks are used to infringe copyright.
The case featured a German shop owner whose network was used to illegally upload an album by a German band. Sony, who holds the rights to the album, sued the shop owner for copyright infringement. However, the man claimed that he did not upload the album and, instead, it was someone using the open wifi in his store.
Sony pressed the case but the court has ruled that the operator of an open wifi can not be held liable for such an infringement. However, the court did rule that such operators can be ordered by the court to place a password or other anti-infringement protections on their network.
Next up today, Rocky Soibam Singh at the Hindustan Times reports that the Delhi High Court has dismissed a lawsuit filed by three international textbook publishers against a photocopy service saying that the social need for education outweighed the publishers’ copyrights.
The case was filed by University Press, Cambridge University Press and Taylor & Francis against the Rameshwari Photocopy Service located near Delhi University. Students used the photocopiers there to copy chapters from textbooks as well as course packs from textbooks sold in India. In 2012, the court had ruled that this was an infringement and banned the service.
However, in a major reversal, the court has lifted the ban saying that copyright is not a “divine” right and that the copying is allowed under a broad education exemption in the country. The court said that the social need for the textbooks outweighed the copyright in them and is now permitting the copying moving forward.
Finally today, Ernesto at Torrentfreak writes that BitTorrent site TorrentHound has shuttered its doors after nine years, making it the third of the top ten largest such sites to shutter in the past few months.
However, according to the site’s founder, the issue wasn’t a legal one, but rather a combination of less traffic, less revenue and bills piling up. Combined with being “bugged” by anti-piracy groups, he said the site “Wasn’t worth the headache anymore.”
The site joins KickassTorrents and Torrentz in closing. However, TorrentHound is currently linking to other “not terrible” locations to download illegal files instead.
That’s it for the three count today. We will be back tomorrow with three more copyright links. If you have a link that you want to suggest a link for the column or have any proposals to make it better. Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email. I hope to hear from you.