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All information current as of 19:28:39 Pacific Time, Monday, 21 February 2005.

Internet Service Providers (ISPs) Liability for Copyright Infringement

   by ResearchLink Sdn Bhd

    01 February, 2002


   Available for download now

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Editorial description(s):

Book Description
On April 13, 2000 the court in Munich, Germany held that the America Online (AOL) was liable for failing to prevent the distribution of pirated music in its service. The AOL in Germany said that it failed to understand the verdict, as it had fulfilled its legal obligations. "We are only the messengers. Nobody would have sued the Royal Mail or Deutsche Post for delivering a package that contained illegal material". Gema, the Germany's Copyright Association, on the other hand, stated, "[T]he verdict is a milestone in implementing copyright on the net". The development and widespread use of the Internet makes it extremely cheap, easy and quick to make excellent copies of works and distribute them widely. The Internet is now a major global data pipeline through which large amounts of intellectual properties are moved. Some users may upload information, which infringes the copyright of others. The question is whether Internet Service Providers (ISPs) can be held liable for copyright infringement for providing services. This issue is perhaps one of the most controversial legal issues emerging from cyberspace. It has been the subject of debate, of countless articles in legal journals, of judicial decisions, and even of legislative action in countries like the United States (U.S), European Union (EU), Australia, Singapore etc. This article examines the issue and discusses the legal development in some of these jurisdictions, and the legislative initiatives to limit the liability of the ISPs.

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