Monday, June 21, 2004

Internet service provider not directly liable for copyright infringement

In CoStar Group, Inc. v. Loopnet, Inc., the Fourth Circuit in an opinion by Judge Niemeyer, joined by Judge Michael with Judge Gregory dissenting, held that an internet service provider is not directly liable for copyright violations of its subscribers, who used the service to violate plaintiff's copyrights.

In his dissent, Judge Gregory was of the view, in essence, that the ISP was not passive enough to avoid liability.

This seems like one of those opinions that you will eventually read about Denise Howell's blog or Donna Wentworth's blog. The only professional commentary I can offer is that I did notice that appellant's counsel was a Hacker (actually, J. Hacker of O'Melveny & Myers in D.C.).

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