Hamburg Stories April 22, 2013

Google not only escaped criminal prosecution in Germany after its Street View cars were found to be capturing private wifi traffic, but it has now pretty much walked away scott-free as the Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information fined it just €145,000 ($190,000).

The pointless fine (reported by Engadget) could probably be paid with the change found buried in the seats of the Streetview cars … expand full story

Hamburg Stories April 20, 2012

German court orders YouTube to filter uploaded content

YouTube must implement filters to stop Germany-based users from uploading videos that contain content held by music-royalty collector GEMA.

GEMA represents over 60,000 German artists. The organization sued Google’s video-sharing platform over 12 temporarily uploaded music videos that failed to pay a licensing fee for their content, but YouTube claimed it holds no legal responsibility. Hamburg’s state court found YouTube not in violation of copyrights on Friday, but said the service bears responsibility for the uploaded content.

The Washington Post explained:

YouTube currently offers copyright holders software that allows them to identify recordings for which they hold copyright, enabling them to flag the content as infringing their rights. The Hamburg court ruled that once an alleged violation is flagged YouTube must now apply the software to the recording to prevent further copyright infringements. The court also told YouTube to install a new program that filters uploaded videos for possible copyright infringements according to key words — such as musicians’ names and song titles — to catch versions of a song that only sound somewhat different, such as live recordings.

It is currently unknown if the ruling will be appealed.

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