|Yandex, the most popular search engine in Russia with 57.6% of the local search market, failed to remove links to pirate books from its search results. In result, the local book publishers sued the company at the court, where they asked to block the search engine nationwide for copyright non-compliance. Fortunately, cooler heads prevailed in the end.
Russia has recently been doing much to tackle online piracy and let the legitimate market flourish. Therefore, the service providers are expected to remove illegal content when asked to by copyright owners or face a court case via a streamlined backup system.
Eksmo, a local publisher producing about 1/3 of all Russian books, filed a complaint with Yandex, the largest search engine in the country, last month. The publisher complained that the search engine failed to prevent links to pirated content from appearing in its search results.
Of course, Yandex was not alleged of directly hosting any of the pirated content. The pirated copies could be found at the Russia’s most popular torrent site, RuTracker, and Yandex results just listed links to those torrents. The publishers gave Yandex 48 hours to remove links to RuTracker from its search results, but it didn’t. This is why a copyright complaint was filed with the Moscow City Court, which effectively kickstarts a process through which infringing sites can find themselves blocked for an initial period of 14 days before a full case is heard.
The book publishers hoped to set a precedent that would force search engines to remove links to RuTracker (although the latter is already blocked in Russia anyway). However, the court rejected the application for preliminary blocking measures against Yandex, because Eksmo failed to prove that the search engine had violated the rights of the books’ author – simply because the links in the search results failed to link to the copyrighted works. Ironically, this was because all Russian ISPs already “permanently” block RuTracker. Besides, the courts have previously recognized that Yandex is not an information broker, and as such can’t affect the accessibility of content hosted elsewhere.
Thanks to TorrentFreak for providing the source of the article.
Monday, September 5th, 2016No comments
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