Missed Opportunity – Dutch Supreme Court Copy-Pastes Google Spain Judgment

In a judgment dated 24 February 2017 the Dutch Supreme Court followed the grounds (of: considerations) of the Google Spain judgment of the EU Court of Justice regarding the right to be forgotten. Although the Dutch court must adhere to the judgments of the EU Court of Justice, this is nevertheless a missed opportunity. Particularly because this way established case law of another European court, the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), and of the Dutch Supreme Court itself is brushed aside very easily, without …read more

ECHR in Pihl v. Sweden: blog operator not liable for promptly removed defamatory user comment

Guest post by prof. Dirk Voorhoof, Ghent University.*

In its decision of 9 March 2017 in Rolf Anders Daniel Pihl v. Sweden, the ECtHR has clarified the limited liability of operators of websites or online platforms containing defamatory user-generated content. The Court’s decision is also to be situated in the current discussion on how to  prevent or react on  “fake news”, and the policy to involve online platforms in terms of liability for posting such messages. Although the Court’s ruling expresses concerns about imposing liability on internet intermediaries that would amount to requiring excessive and impractical forethought capable of undermining the right to impart information via internet, the decision in Pihl v. Sweden itself guarantees only minimal protection for the rights of internet intermediaries and …read more

Hyperlinking at one’s own risk – CJEU in GS Media / Sanoma

By Joran Spauwen and Jens van den Brink[1]

The GS Media decision[2] of 8 September 2016 is the latest chapter in the case law from the Court of Justice of the European Union (“CJEU”) on hyperlinking and copyright. Some consider it a questionable outcome with drastic restrictions on the freedom to link, and consequently of the freedom of information. Others feel the GS Media decision is merely a logical consequence of CJEU’s previous case law on the copyright holder’s exclusive right to ‘communicate his work to the public’. In any event, the decision has caused quite a stir, which may in part be due to the racy facts underlying this …read more

European Court upholds criminal conviction for purchasing illegal firearm as a form of ‘check it out’ journalism in Salihu ao v. Sweden

 Guest post by professor Dirk Voorhoof and Daniel Simons.*

Investigative journalism sometimes operates at the limits of the law. This is especially true of what could be called ‘check it out’ journalism: reporting in which a journalist tests how effective a law or procedure is by attempting to circumvent it. A recent decision shows that those who commit (minor) offences during this type of newsgathering activity cannot count …read more

Guest post by Dirk Voorhoof, Ghent University.*

 

The Grand Chamber strikes again: Bédat v. Switzerland

Criminal conviction of journalist for having published documents covered by investigative secrecy in a criminal case is no violation of Article 10 ECHR

It has become common knowledge amongst “Strasbourg observers” that the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights doesn’t have the best reputation in terms of guaranteeing the right of freedom of expression and information. In earlier cases such …read more

Top rankings for media team Kennedy Van der Laan

The two most authoritative legal rankings for lawyers have recently been published: Chambers and Legal 500. The Kennedy Van der Laan media team has again been awarded top rankings in both guides in the category media and entertainment (see Chambers and Legal 500).

Jens van den Brink is mentioned as ’notable practitioner’ in the Chambers ranking: “Jens van den Brink has been especially active recently in handling defamation and copyright disputes for broadcasters and newspapers. Clients say he is “very good, he knows what he is talking about and he always reacts very promptly.” He advised UPC Nederland on a dispute in which a German rights holder organisation was seeking to disclose the identity of UPC subscribers who had exchanged pirated movies.” Legal500 …read more

Google Spain in the Netherlands III: does convicted murderer have ‘right to be forgotten’?

The ground-breaking Costeja González judgment of the ECJ was followed in the Netherlands by several proceedings about the ‘right to be forgotten’. This was also the objective of recent preliminary relief proceedings brought by a convicted killer. Having served his term, he has been trying to erase all online links between his name and the crime. In these attempts he met with resistance from an interest group and the father of his victim, who make online publications about the murder. The killer started preliminary relief proceedings for the removal and keeping removed of publications of the defendants containing both his name and details of his crime. The Court in preliminary relief proceedings ruled (pdf) …read more

Dutch court (II): Google Spain Ruling Not Meant to Suppress News Reporting

In the fall of 2014 the Amsterdam Court was offered a chance to shed light on the interpretation of the Google Spain (Costeja) decision of the European Court of Justice, which created a ‘right to be forgotten’. The court then ruled that Google was right to refuse to remove links to refused a convicted criminal to profit from this judgment. To our knowledge, this was the first decision in its kind. Last week, the Amsterdam court ruled on yet another request to be forgotten. It again found in favour of Google and this time decided that the right of removal is not meant to …read more

ECHR in Tierbefreier v. Germany – Monkey Business, undercover reporting by an animal rights group

The case of Tierbefreier E.V. v. Germany before the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) concerned the dissemination of a film of 20 minutes with the title ‘’Poisoning for Profit’’, showing monkeys used for research in a laboratory. The film was based on footage made by an undercover journalist who had used a hidden camera to document how the monkeys were treated by staff and what their living conditions were like. Before the applicant association Tierbefreier E.V. made the film public parts of the footage had been showed on TV by various broadcasting companies. The content of the film consisted to a large extent of accusations that the company using the monkeys did not live up to existing legal standards for using research animals. The German courts issued an injunction against Tierbefreier …read more

European Court applies Von Hannover II criteria in defamation case

In the case of Print Zeitungsverlag GmbH v. Austria, Bezirksblatt, a regional newspaper distributed free of charge in in Tyrol in Austria, reported on an anonymous dissemination of a letter (printed in 300 copies) concerning two brothers who were both local politicians. The letter posed a number of questions about the brothers such as: “Would you buy a car from this man?”, “Is this man honest with his family?” and “Does this man have the necessary personal/professional qualifications?’’. The article in the regional newspaper was called “Anonymous campaign against M&M”. In the article the letter was published in its full length together with …read more

French court awards damages for breach of privacy to alleged mistress of French president Hollande

Conviction of cyberstalker upheld on appeal

Article 10 of the Convention includes the right of access to data held by an intelligence agency

Consultation on proposed regulation of online gambling: Dutch market opens up at a price

Games of Chance Authority Reveals Parts of the New Enforcement Policy

Mediateam Kennedy Van der Laan in Chambers and Legal 500

European Court in Axel Springer Case: Publications on Actor’s Possession of Cocaine Allowed

European Court of Human Rights Has Rendered Von Hannover II judgment – More Freedom for Entertainment Press

On BBC News about Holleeder’s lawsuit against Heineken Kidnapping movie

Dutch Movie Producer IDTV Wins Second Procedure About Heineken Kidnapping Movie – Claims of Kidnappers Denied