European court supports granting of site-blocking injunctions against ISPs

In an important ruling for content owners trying to eliminate internet piracy and intermediaries caught up in such piracy, the European Court of Justice has confirmed that site-blocking injunctions can be granted against internet service providers (ISPs), provided the injunctions strike a ‘fair balance’ between fundamental rights. The ruling takes a similar approach to that already taken by the English High Court in equivalent cases but does suggest that more types of intermediaries may be subject to the injunctions than has previously been the case.

The Copyright Directive requires EU member states to enable rights holders to apply for injunctions against ‘intermediaries whose services are used by a third party to infringe’ copyright (article 8[3]). The case was about what sort of ‘intermediaries’ can be subject to such injunctions and what sort of injunctions can be granted against them.

The decision arose out of Austrian litigation between two film producers and an Austrian ISP. The film producers applied for an injunction requiring the ISP to prevent its users from accessing, a website that enabled its and the ISP’s users to watch or download films, which infringed the film producers’ copyright. The nature of the injunction granted by the Austrian court was important: it was for an absolute bar on the ISP ‘facilitating access’ to and did not specify the means to be used by the ISP. The ISP, in the Vienna Higher Regional Court’s view, had to remain free to decide the means to be used…

Click on the link below to read the rest of the Taylor Wessing briefing.

Sign in or Register to continue reading this article

Sign in


It's quick, easy and free!

It takes just 5 minutes to register. Answer a few simple questions and once completed you’ll have instant access.

Register now

Why register to The Lawyer


Industry insight

In-depth, expert analysis into the stories behind the headlines from our leading team of journalists.


Market intelligence

Identify the major players and business opportunities within a particular region through our series of free, special reports.


Email newsletters

Receive your pick of The Lawyer's daily and weekly email newsletters, tailored by practice area, region and job function.

More relevant to you

To continue providing the best analysis, insight and news across the legal market we are collecting some information about who you are, what you do and where you work to improve The Lawyer and make it more relevant to you.

Briefings from Taylor Wessing

View more briefings from Taylor Wessing

Analysis from The Lawyer

  • merger deal

    Corporate crunch time: who will triumph at The Lawyer Awards 2014?

    As the equity capital markets rocketed back into favour and global M&A saw at least a partial return to form, there have been some rich pickings for The Lawyer’s Corporate Team of the Year award shortlisted firms in 2014. 

  • singapore orchid

    Singapore: Cash course

    The city-state is working hard to become a global wealth management hub, and law firms are gearing up for a prosperous new world

View more analysis from The Lawyer


5 New Street Square

Turnover (£m): 241.20
No. of lawyers: 860 (UK 200)
Jurisdiction: UK
No. of offices: 6
No. of qualified lawyers: 73 (International 50)
No. of partners: 29