Playboy leak: Sites can’t link to copyright violations says EU court
The European Court of Justice ruled that it is illegal to link to copyrighted material that was put online illegally, provided that this is done for profit and that those posting the link knows that the material is online illegally, NU.nl reports. This ruling was made in the case involving GeenStijl linking to Playboy photos of a naked Britt Dekker. The European Court of Justice concluded that GeenStijl was not allowed to do so - GeenStijl had to know that the photos was posted without the consent of Sanoma, editor of Playboy at the time, the judges decided. And as GeenStijl linked to the photos for profit, it was GeenStijl's responsibility to verify whether the photos were online legally or not. Sanoma filed the lawsuit against GeenStijl five years ago. With this judgement by the European Court of Justice, the case will be referred to the Supreme Court, which will make a final ruling and impose judgement if it sees fit. This ruling sets an important president for other cases revolving around linking to copyrighted material. In future judges will have to consider whether it was done for profit, and whether the person knew that he was linking to illegal material. The Court emphasized that this is difficult to verify for individuals. Which means that the judgement is likely to affect commercial website operators more than individuals, according to NU.