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Thursday, 9 March 2006

DEEP LINKS AND DEEP COVER


Danish deep linking case

The IPKat is grateful to Edwin Jacobs of Law & Justice Blog for tipping him off that the Danish Maritime and Commercial Court has found that deep linking (linking directly to a page or image within a webpage, rather than to the homepage) is not illegal. Ofir.dk, a web portal, deep linked to the Home estate agency. Although the decision is limited to it facts, it appears that the court make general comments in favour of deep linking as a desirable feature of the internet and search engines. Also, the court confirmed that Home’s online database did not count as a database for the purposes of the Database Directive.

The IPKat thinks this decision is right. Deep linking is indeed useful in terms of effective dissemination of information, as long as it is not used in a deceptive manner.


Footballers orgy - a copyright development

The Press Gazette reports that footballer Ashley Cole is thinking of adding a copyright claim to his libel action against The Sun and the News of the World. The News of the World claimed that two Premiership footballers, a musician and a mobile phone set to vibrate were involved in an ‘orgy’ but gave no information that could identify the three. The Sun later ran a story concerning the engagement ring Ashley Cole has given to his fiancé which included references to a mobile phone set to vibrate. The News of the World then ran an obscured photograph said to identify one of the footballers and the musicians. The editor of an online news service Pink News (proprietor, one Benjamin Cohen, of the judicial review of Nominet fame) then tracked down and published what he claims is the original version of the photo via an online image search next to the picture published by News of the World. The picture was found on the website of Choice FM DJ, DJ Masterstepz. DJ Masterstepz is now suing the News of the World. His solicitors said:

"Although Masterstepz was not named in the articles, the manner of publication has led to his being identified as the DJ alleged to have been involved. The articles made use of a photograph of Masterstepz with footballer Ashley Cole, taken from the Choice FM radio station website, and crudely pixillated in an attempt to conceal their identities."
The IPKat asks: (i) does the act of pixilation create a new copyright work (albeit one which depends on infringing another work)? and (ii) do we have a moral right to integrity case on our hands?

1 comment:

Archimedes said...

The whole "legal mess" with so called "deep linking" once again proves that lawyers can only complicate things. It is a basic rule of the A HREF tag in the HTML to link to some content (that's the basic idea of the Internet too ;). When I write some content I mean the direct content I would like to point someone to. If an owner of a website does not want his content to be linked it is very easy to block such attempts (use PHP or HTTPD). If a person creates and maintains a website in the manner of open content we can conclude "tacitus consensus" for each user to link to this content.

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