Tuesday, January 29, 2008

EU court tells music industry: ISPs don't have to squeal on filesharers

While the music industry is gathered in the South of France, a cold wind blew in from the West: the EU supreme court ruled that there is not community-wide compulsion on ISPs to reveal personal data about alleged filesharers to assist copyright holders in civil cases:

"Community law does not require the member states, in order to ensure the effective protection of copyright, to lay down an obligation to disclose personal data in the context of civil proceedings," the court said in a statement.

Promusicae wanted names of Telefonica Internet clients who shared copyright material on the Web using the KaZaA file exchange software, so it could start civil proceedings against them.

The court said that if national governments wished to bring forward legislation, that was their affair, but it wasn't mandated at a European level.