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Under the Copyright Directive (2001/29/EC) the owner of copyright material has the exclusive right to control any "communications to the public" of their protected works.

In an advisory opinion to the Court of Justice of the European Union ("CJEU"), Attorney General Wathelet (the "AG"), recently considered whether the act of posting a hyperlink directing users to infringing content on a third party website would give rise to copyright infringement.


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On 16 March 2016, the Advocate General (AG) delivered an Opinion, in McFadden v Sony Music Entertainment Germany GmbH Case-484/14, that a business offering free WiFi access to the public cannot be held liable for copyright infringement committed by a user of that WiFI. The decision confirms the applicability of the E-Commerce Directive, and the “mere conduit” defence, to free WiFi providers.


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Photo of Alison Quinn

The High Court in the UK has fully endorsed the use of predictive coding in discharging a parties obligation regarding electronic disclosure. Master Matthews, in Pyrrho Investments and others v MWB Property and others [2016] EWHC 256 (Ch), noted in this case that "there were no factors of any weight" to point in the direction of not using predictive coding for the disclosure process.  This is the first time a UK Court has given judgment on the area, while noting the limited Irish and US jurisprudence on the topic.

Predictive coding, often referred to as technology assisted review, is the use of computer software to review and analyse documents, determining if they are of relevance to the issues of the case. It is not without human input however, as the computer must first be "trained" in order to determine relevance.  Based on the training received the software can review and score documents for relevancy, subject to quality assurance exercises carried out by the human reviewer.


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Photo of Daniel Harrington

The conference on Modernising Copyright, jointly organised by the Irish Centre for European Law and the School of Law, Trinity College Dublin, brought together a number of interesting academics, practitioners and commentators, for a lively discussion concerning various aspects of the future of copyright law in Europe. Among the issues addressed were the development of a Digital Single Market (DSM) in Europe, the nature of copyright exceptions and limitations, and the position of online service providers and intermediaries vís-a-vís copyright infringement.


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The Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (OHIM) last week published its decision in relation to the application of the well-known fast-food outlet Supermac’s for a Community Trade Mark (CTM). In a split decision, OHIM ruled that Supermac’s is not entitled to use its brand to sell fast-food/takeaway products or services or to use the brand as a CTM on certain foodstuffs (e.g. meat, fish, poultry, chicken, onion rings, hamburgers, nuggets or chips) in the EU. This decision comes following the filing of extensive opposition by arguably Supermacs’ biggest competitor, McDonald’s.


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The International Patents Group at Taylor Wessing recently launched their online patent map, an interactive tool that allows users to compare different patent litigation regimes across Europe. The tool answers key questions on the law and practice of patent litigation to include procedure, claim construction, validity, interim measures, costs, and appeals, while allowing users

Photo of Eavan Buckley

The EU has published a trade mark reform package for 2016, comprising a new Community Trade Mark (CTM) Regulation and Trade Mark Directive.

The Regulation, which sets out the rules and procedures governing CTMs, will come into effect on 23 March 2016. The updated Trade Mark Directive will introduce a number of similar provisions in respect of national trade mark systems, however, its provisions will not come into effect until January 2019.


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Photo of Alison Quinn

A Californian Judge, Gail J Standish, recently dismissed a copyright lawsuit where it was alleged that Taylor Swift had copied lyrics for her popular song "Shake It Off". Taylor Swift is in fact an avid fan of enforcing her own copyright, was facing a $42 million damages claim.   Jesse Graham filed the lawsuit claiming that

Photo of Kate Gorey

The US Court of Appeals (the Court) recently gave judgment on whether a type of yoga would fall within the remit of copyright in the case of Bikram Yoga College of India v. Evolution Yoga, LLC, 2015 WL 5845415.  The case concerned Bikram yoga – a popular style of yoga developed by Bikram Choudry (the plaintiff in the present case) over 20 years ago which consists of 26 postures and 2 breathing exercise, designed to systematically work every part of the body, and is performed in a hot room.


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