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Decision overturns two pro-privacy decisions by lower courts

The German Federal Court of Justice (Bundesgerichtshof, BGH) on Tuesday announced a ruling on a court dispute between Deutsche Telekom AG (ETR:DTE), Europe's largest telecommunications company and Naidoo Records, a label of one of Germany's top Christian rock musicians, Xavier Naidoo.  

The new ruling overturns two lower court rulings by the regional court and the regional appeals court of Cologne, which ruled that ISPs did not have to hand over data on infringing users unless the infringement was on a "commercial scale".

In the new ruling -- which may only be overturned by Germany's constitutional court, the nation's highest court -- ISPs are required to log all customers IP addresses and in the case of an infringement report, hand over the name and addresses customer was connected to the dynamic IP address at the time.

Under the ruling, the good news is that infringement allegations must be screened by a judge to determine if infringement actually occurred.  The bad news is that ISPs like Deutsche Telekom may now have to spend millions extra on monitoring, logging, and reporting expenses, as reports on the ruling did not mention any form of compensation for processing requests.

Deutsche Telekom
A German Federal court has forced Deutsche Telekom to pay to police its users.
[Image Source: MobiFrance]

The ruling, in effect indicates the German Federal Court's opinion that the copyright privileges of large media entities outweigh the financial well being of service providers or the privacy rights of customers.

The song involved in the precedent setting spat was dubbed "Bitte hör nicht auf zu träumen" -- "Please Don't Stop Dreaming".  Indeed for big media this ruling is a dream come true.  But for ISPs and pirates it's the start of a terrible nightmare.

Source: Bundesgerichtshof Press Release



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Death rattle
By Motoman on 8/16/2012 11:00:47 AM , Rating: 2
...fascist much, Germany?

Also, regarding the cornerbox photo, OM NOM NOM.




RE: Death rattle
By amanojaku on 8/16/2012 11:18:20 AM , Rating: 5
Avast, thar be valuable pirate booty! Plunge into the briny deep!


RE: Death rattle
By Reclaimer77 on 8/16/2012 3:11:03 PM , Rating: 1
Yeah really. I guess we should have nuked them too. The Japanese at least are well behaved now.

...whoa that's a pretty harsh statement. Very un-PC. I probably shouldn't click "post comment" ooops oh n-


RE: Death rattle
By Jeffk464 on 8/16/2012 4:04:17 PM , Rating: 4
Translation - big media has more lobbying money then private citizens.


RE: Death rattle
By maugrimtr on 8/20/2012 8:12:13 AM , Rating: 1
Yes, because referring to Germany as fascist somehow proves a point...like you being a racist dick dragging up the past. How about Germans refer to the US as a nation of hillbilly Klan members? You wouldn't like that now, would you? Think a little.


cost displacement
By Mike Acker on 8/17/2012 8:06:06 AM , Rating: 2
all this does is displace the cost of copy right enforcement from the labels to the ISP -- which will then be forced to shift this onto consumers generally

this should have been made plain in the ruling: the labels are responsible for tracking down "pirates" and preparing their case on such for court. it's their stuff. it's their chore.

worse, pirates will find ways to hide. this ruling will only be effective against the little guys -- some body who downloads a little something. the "pirates" are those providing "free" online libraries to download from

when i first got into this argument i thought -- copy rights should be respected. but in terms of content there is no way to respect what those goons are doing.




RE: cost displacement
By Mike Acker on 8/17/2012 8:15:18 AM , Rating: 2
this reminds me of the HMRA -- where the labels settled for a "tax" applied to recording media -- essential pushing the cost of enforcement onto the general population

today the idea is to lock all content into the "cloud" and force everyone to use a personal cloud player

it won't work: the presentation is also the distribution.


Hmmm
By Ammohunt on 8/16/2012 10:27:31 AM , Rating: 2
Death of a thousand cuts for Net Neutrality.




Stupid ruling
By amanojaku on 8/16/2012 10:31:34 AM , Rating: 2
A better solution is to contact the ISP when a suspected transfer occurs. ISPs give out IPs in static blocks to a group of users. If a person makes a habit of pirating, the IP is enough to track down which block houses the suspect. From there, a traffic sniff and/or NetFlow/Jflow would verify illegal activity from an IP, which would then be mapped to a MAC/user. Of course, proof of illegal activity would need to be presented to the ISP in order to enable this surveillance.

There's no point in collecting data en mass in order to catch the occasional pirate. It would be prohibitively expensive to keep logs of everything, and prone to failure. As well as a violation of privacy, but I don't know enough about German privacy laws.




Not that bad
By Trisped on 8/17/2012 3:12:46 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
In the new ruling ... ISPs are required to log all customers IP addresses and in the case of an infringement report, hand over the name and addresses customer was connected to the dynamic IP address at the time.

... The bad news is that ISPs like Deutsche Telekom may now have to spend millions extra on monitoring, logging, and reporting expenses, as reports on the ruling did not mention any form of compensation for processing requests.
In reality it should not be that much. Basically they need their DNS system to log which account gets what IP, and when they get it. This is something which the servers should already do. Plus there is the fact that a typical IP address does not change often.
Then they need to make an interface which searches the list and gets the IP address assignment and times for a particular user.

I fail to see how this is going to cost ISPs millions.




Death rattle
By Motoman on 8/16/2012 11:03:58 AM , Rating: 1
...fascist much, Germany?

Also, regarding the cornerbox photo, OM NOM NOM.




Absolutely correct court ruling
By Beenthere on 8/16/12, Rating: -1
RE: Absolutely correct court ruling
By bigboxes on 8/16/2012 10:33:54 AM , Rating: 2
Tell us more, Gomer.


RE: Absolutely correct court ruling
By Obujuwami on 8/16/2012 11:47:33 AM , Rating: 2
I concur...tell us more about how infringing on our private activities so that they can mine that data for trends which allow them to present us with the latest fad. We all know that's what this is really for as everyone realized that Google/facebook have been doing this for a while and they are all trying to carve their own niche for doing this. Big media just goes to the source and wants to monitor all the data going in and out...which is quite disconcerting as I don't want some random person to have access to my comings and goings on the interwebz.

If you think this is a good thing, you should work harder to make that rollerball government where large conglomerates control regions of land and people do what they are told for "...the good of the company." Please, make us slaves and surfs again so that humanity can slip into another dark age.


RE: Absolutely correct court ruling
By Uncle on 8/16/2012 12:49:51 PM , Rating: 2
Agree with most of your statement, that is ,where we are headed and the powers the ordinary person is losing and has lost already.
" Please, make us slaves and surfs again so that humanity can slip into another dark age." Already there,just going to get worst from here on in. Stalin said it takes two generations to change the mindset of the population. You decide what generation were in.


RE: Absolutely correct court ruling
By Jeffk464 on 8/16/2012 4:09:49 PM , Rating: 2
yup, I'm not that old and in my lifetime have seen a big shift towards big brother in this country. Corporations seem to be gaining more influence over the government as private citizen influence seems to be going inversely down.


RE: Absolutely correct court ruling
By Reclaimer77 on 8/16/2012 4:19:17 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
Corporations seem to be gaining more influence over the government


Trust me, that's far more preferable than Governments influencing Corporations.

quote:
yup, I'm not that old and in my lifetime have seen a big shift towards big brother in this country.


Uhh exactly. That's not the fault of Corporations. Stop voting in big government types.


By C'DaleRider on 8/16/2012 5:39:39 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
That's not the fault of Corporations. Stop voting in big government types.


That's a laugh. There seems to be no small gov't types out there on either side....both sides of the aisle are equally as bad as the other for increasing gov't size.


By Jeffk464 on 8/16/2012 4:05:51 PM , Rating: 1
ISPs must do their part as they are part of the problem and profit from providing access to the pirates.

Right - just as road construction companies are aiding bank robbers by making it easier for them to get away.


RE: Absolutely correct court ruling
By faster on 8/17/2012 8:57:10 AM , Rating: 1
This is yet another step in the erosion of our personal freedoms. This time the erosion was from the judicial branch. Our rights are under attack from all branches of government.

Placing criminal charges on the consumers for utilizing existing sharing technologies in this digital age is simply wrong. It should be incumbent upon the media companies to encrypt and control their product so that it is marketable in the digital age. Maybe the media they sell is only playable with their downloadable player. It is up to them to come up with a solution, not the average user. The average user should not be penalized because these media companies are publishing content that is easily transferable between media devices and computers.

Let the media companies control the sources of the material and encode them with identifying code that allows them to track who the pirated material was sold to. If they discover pirating, then they will know the source without involving the ISP. Forcing one private company (ISP) at their own expense to do the tracking work for another private company's product is ludicrous.

That being said, I would be shocked if they didn’t already do this in the US. I’m sure Verizon is recording my IP right now.


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