Huge Win For Sanity In Spain!

Spain Flag3 Huge Win For Sanity In Spain!And the news that made a LOT (Millions?) of people happy… the first article from TorrentFreak

File-Sharing and Link Sites Declared Legal in Spain

After early calls to shut down a Spanish file-sharing site were dismissed, music group SGAE pinned its hopes on success at the full trial. But, the outcome for them was nothing short of a disaster. The judge declared that both non-commercial file-sharing link sites and non-profit use of P2P networks are legal in Spain.

Despite many rulings which have declared file-sharing sites legal if they don’t profit directly from copyright infringements, in recent years its become something of a custom in Spain for music rights groups to attempt to close down sites in advance of a full hearing to assess their legality.

One such case involves eDonkey link site elrincondejesus.com and although fairly low profile worldwide, the site will now start to set headlines.

Back in May last year, site and bar owner Jesus Guerra received a complaint from music group SGAE (Sociedad General de Autores y Editores) which alleged the site abused the copyrights of its members.

In a June court appearance, SGAE hoped to get an early injunction to shut Elrincondejesus immediately in advance of a full hearing which would happen at a later date. Guerra protested that his site is legal, carries no advertising and simply provides links like any other search engine.

Judge Raul N. García Orejudo threw out the request for an immediate closure of the site in July, declaring: “P2P networks, as a mere transmission of data between Internet users, do not violate, in principle, any right protected by Intellectual Property Law.”

Now the full case has been heard and the outcome is nothing short of a disaster for SGAE.

In order to assess if there had been a breach of Spain’s Intellectual Property Act, the court had to decide if simply providing links to copyrighted works was the same as making those works available to the public. Judge Raul N. García Orejudo decided that offering an index of links and/or linking to copyright material is not the same as distribution and noted that under current law there is nothing which prohibits such sites from operating.

In making his decision the judge also looked at the finances of the site. He said the site was not a business since the operator of Elrincondejesus made no direct or indirect profits from its operation. Apparently on a roll after confirming non-profit file-sharing sites are legal, he gave users of those sites a nice surprise too.

“P2P networks are mere conduits for the transmission of data between Internet users, and on this basis they do not infringe rights protected by

 

Read the rest of the article at TF

Related article at TD:

Judge Rules P2P Legal In Spain Yet Again

Spain continues to be one of the few countries out there that seems to not have its judges lose their critical thinking abilities the second anyone mentions the word “piracy.” We’ve pointed out a few times in the past that Spanish courts have ruled that file sharing is legal and it looks like they’ve done so again. Infophage was the first of a few to send in an article about the latest ruling, which again found that just linking to infringing material is not copyright infringement. The judge apparently went further, though, also noting that using P2P file sharing systems does not appear to violate copyright law in Spain, as long as the user isn’t doing so for monetary profit.

Of course, this isn’t over by a long shot. Late last year, entertainment industry lobbyists got Spanish politicians to propose new copyright laws that would (of course) ratchet up copyright to make it more like it is in other countries (i.e., more draconian). And, as we recently noted, a bunch of Spanish record labels have sued the gov’t for not doing enough to stop file sharing. But, hopefully, this country that has…

 

Read the rest of the article at TechDirt

Related article via Google Translate: here

And from SlashDot

“As a follow-up to a previous discussion a judge in Spain has ruled that under Spanish law a person who downloads music for personal use can not be punished or branded a criminal. This seems to be a teeny bit clearer than the first article, which points out that downloading is a civil, and not criminal, offense for individuals. The Spanish recording industry federation Promusicae is predictably a bit peeved, and says it will appeal against the decision.” From the article: “The state prosecutor’s office and two music distribution associations had sought a two year sentence against the man, who downloaded songs and then allegedly offered them on a CD through email and chat rooms. However, there was no direct proof he made money from selling the CDs. Justice Minister Juan Fernando Lopéz Aguilar says Spain is drafting a new law to abolish the existing right to private copies of material. Due to different regulatory regimes in Europe, the proceedings against file sharers differ greatly in each country. However, most European judges tend to take a harder stance on file sharing. Twenty two people in Finland were fined..

Read the rest of the article at SlashDot.

From BarcelonaReporter

P2P File-Sharing legal in Spain

The subject of the lawsuit isn’t particularly important in the grand scheme of things, A fairly small eDonkey and BitTorrent link site called elrincondejesus.com
P2P File-Sharing legal in Spain

Spain is becoming the last bastion of common sense when it comes to peer-to-peer and file sharing, at least until the big media companies get their own way and change the law in the country altogether. Torrentfreak, the ever-vigilant blog focusing on BitTorrent and file-sharing issues, points to a recent lawsuit in Spain that ended quite favorably for both P2P users and link sites and dedicated search engines, and that found both use-cases to be perfectly legal in the country.

The subject of the lawsuit isn’t particularly important in the grand scheme of things. A fairly small eDonkey and BitTorrent link site called elrincondejesus.com was sued almost a year ago by a local music industry group, SGAE (Sociedad General de Autores y Editores), for alleged copyright infringement on the site. The group initially tried to…

Read the rest of the article at BR.

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