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First off today, Ed Christman at Billboard reports that the U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee has passed the Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement Act (CASE Act), setting up the law for a full vote by both the House and the Senate.
The act would create a Copyright Claims Board to hear what the laws dubs “small claims” cases of copyright infringement. The damages in such cases would be limited to $15,000 per claim and $30,000 per case and would be much cheaper both to file and defend, making it a practical alternative for relatively small or minor cases of alleged copyright infringement.
The act was previously advanced by the Senate Judiciary Committee, meaning that it has been advanced to the floor of both houses. They are hoping that it will come to a full vote in both before the upcoming October recess. Though the act is very popular with rightsholders, several groups have expressed concern it could enable copyright trolling though supporters of the act say it has adequate protections against misuse.
Next up today, Foo Yun Chee and Klaus Lauer report that Google has secured a legal victory in Germany as the European Court of Justice, the EU’s highest court, has ruled that Google does not owe area publishers for the use of their content in snippets. However, the ruling is only because Germany didn’t properly notify the European Commission, the EU’s executive branch, of the law.
Several publishers filed a lawsuit against Google claiming that the search giant owed them up to 1 billion Euros ($1.1 billion) for the use of news snippets and other items in their search engines. However, the court ruled that, since Germany had not notified the European Commission about the law, the court could not enforce it and handed the victory to Google.
The EU recently altered its copyright law more broadly to include similar protection of snippets of text. However, this particular case was based on an earlier 2013 law that was passed in Germany, not the whole of the EU.
Finally today, Nicole Carpenter at Polygon reports that Nintendo has filed a lawsuit against the website RomUniverse, which it accuses of being have a haven for pirated games and of profiting directly off of those games.
According to Nintendo, RomUniverse allows users to buy access to its collection of new and classic Nintendo games for just $30 per year. Obviously, however, Nintendo claims that the site is unlicensed and has offered hundreds of thousands of downloads of Nintendo games to its subscribers.
Nintendo is suing for $150,000 per copyright infringement and upt ot $2 million for trademark violations. The lawsuit comes amid a flurry of anti-piracy action by Nintendo, which recently saw the company get several suspected pirate sites blocked in the UK.