Recent experience shows EU measures against fake news are problematic

The EU is stepping up its fight against fake news. It recently published a new policy document (the ‘Communication on Tackling online disinformation’ of 26 April 2018) proposing several measures against fake news.

But the EU is already actively pursuing an anti-fake news campaign, specifically directed at Kremlin disinformation. It started a website called ‘EU vs Disinfo’, where it selects articles the EU qualifies as fake news and ‘pro-Kremlin disinformation’. It is a type of naming and shaming strategy, where the EU links to the media which in its eyes are ‘disinforming outlets’. On EU vs Disinfo, the EU accused three Dutch media of spreading fake news. However, …read more

Geoblocking Regulation is final!

On February 28 Europe adopted the Geoblocking Regulation. The European Parliament, European Commission and Member States have collectively reached a final agreement. Discrimination of customers in e-commerce on the basis of their nationality, place of residence or place of establishment shall be prohibited. Streaming of copyright protected music, e-books, online games or software do not (yet) fall under the scope of the Regulation. Other services such as financial, audio-visual, transport, healthcare and social services are also …read more

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

In a judgment dated 24 February 2017 the Dutch Supreme Court followed the considerations of the EU Court of Justice in the Google Spain judgment 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

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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

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

Conviction of cyberstalker upheld on appeal

In 2012 a woman from Amsterdam called D. was convicted in summary proceedings for Cyberstalking, Identity Theft, Harassment, Threats and Defamation. She had been stalking the American film maker Christopher Johnson IV and the actress Mariana Tosca, mainly through the internet (we wrote about this case here, in Dutch). As far as we are aware, this was the first ruling in the Netherlands about cross-border stalking through the Internet. A special aspect of the case was that it was heard according to American law and that the Dutch court awarded punitive damages.

D. brought an appeal against the judgment. In its ruling, the Amsterdam Court of Appeal …read more

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

The Dutch government has proposed new regulation for online gambling in The Netherlands. The Minister of Justice took his time and after more than two years of consideration finally submitted his proposal for public consultation. As indicated, the online gambling market will be regulated through permits. Stakeholders will be pleased that the government is finally trying to …read more

Games of Chance Authority Reveals Parts of the New Enforcement Policy

logo-kansspel1A few months ago, we reported about the start of the new Games of Chance Authority in the Netherlands, which intends to give a new boost to the enforcement of the games of chance policy. At that time not much was known about the exact approach of this new Authority, except that it would have the power to impose hefty fines. Meanwhile, enforcement has started and 40 providers of games of chance that are aimed at the Dutch market have been warned that they must adapt their websites. An interesting aspect is …read more