As currently stands, operators of online platforms do not, in principle, themselves make a communication to the public of copyright-protected content illegally posted online by users of those platforms

(Source: Court of Justice of the EU)

However, those operators do make such a communication in breach of copyright where they contribute, beyond merely making those platforms available, to giving access to such content to the public

In the dispute giving rise to the first case (C-682/18), Frank Peterson, a music producer, is bringing an action against YouTube and its legal representative Google before the German courts in respect of the posting online, on YouTube, in 2008, of a number of recordings over which he claims to hold various rights. Those recordings were posted by users of that platform without his permission. They are songs from the album A Winter Symphony by Sarah Brightman and private audio recordings made during concerts on her ‘Symphony Tour’.

In the dispute giving rise to the second case (C-683/18), the publisher Elsevier is bringing an action against Cyan do before the German courts in respect of the posting online, on the Uploaded file-hosting and -sharing platform, in 2013, of various works over which Elsevier holds exclusive rights. Those works were posted by users of that platform without its permission. They are Gray’s Anatomy for Students, Atlas of Human Anatomy and Campbell-Walsh Urology, which could be consulted on Uploaded via the link collections rehabgate.com, avaxhome.ws and bookarchive.ws.

Full Press Release – 108/2021 : 22 June 2021 – Judgment of the Court of Justice in Joined Cases C-682/18,C-683/18

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