Top German criminal court to rule on YouTube copyright infringement | News | DW | 09.05.2018
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Top German criminal court to rule on YouTube copyright infringement

The Federal Court of Justice is to rule on whether or not Google video service YouTube is liable for copyright infringement and what damages if any are owed. The case stems from a Hamburg producer who sued YouTube.

Germany's top criminal and civil court, the Federal Court of Justice (BGH), is set to decide whether the video giant YouTube, which is owned by Google, is liable if users upload clips that they do not own the copyright on. The court will also have to decide what actions if any YouTube will have to take in order to rectify the situation.

The case stems from a dispute that has been going on for nearly ten years between Frank Peterson, a producer in Hamburg, and YouTube. An earlier court decision said that YouTube had to remove clips that violated copyright protections and told YouTube to be stricter and more thorough in their inspections.

What is at issue:

  • A German producer sued YouTube over copyright infringement for repeatedly playing songs and clips of concerts and the studio album "A Winter Symphony" of British soprano Sarah Brightman
  • At issue are 36 video clips that producer Frank Peterson claims he owns the rights to.
  • Peterson claims that every time someone clicks on a video he loses money.
  • A lower court in Hamburg ruled that YouTube had to remove the illegal clips.

Read more: YouTube and Germany reach deal on music videos

German Federal Supreme Court in Karlsruhe (picture-alliance/dpa/U.Deck)

Judges are hearing a case that could cost Google and YouTube millions

Taken to the top: The BGH will hear an appeal it allowed itself, meaning any ruling reached on Wednesday, will be a landmark decision.

av/rt (dpa, AFP)

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