MP3 search engine ordered to close
16 June 2006
AMSTERDAM — An appeals court in Amsterdam has ruled that the activities of MP3 search engine Zoekmp3 are illegal.
The website that featured tens of thousands of links and attracted 50,000 visitors a day was offline by Friday. The court decided the day before that rights holders were not obliged to separately report links to unauthorised files and that the entire site should be banned.
The court action was taken by Dutch foundation BREIN, Dutch acronym for “Protection Rights Entertainment Industry Netherlands”. Brein is also the Dutch for brain. The organisation describes itself as a “unique bundling of forces of the entire entertainment industry in the fight against intellectual property theft”.
“The argument put forward by the lawyer for Zoekmp3 that downloading by consumers on a limited scale is permissible was not relevant,” BREIN said in a statement.
Zoekmp3 carried a disclaimer noting the exchange of files without the permission of rights holders was illegal. But BREIN argued this notice was worthless “given that Zoekmp3 knew the majority of the links offered by the site went to illegal files and that the public was just going to ignore a disclaimer”.
The appeal court judgement delivered on 15 June overrules a court in Haarlem that sided with the owners of the search engine in 2004.
[Copyright Expatica News 2006]
Subject: Dutch news + file sharing