The Court of Justice of the European Union has ruled on the Euskatel case. It gives permission to the copyright industry to register the IP addresses and request data from those users to the operators, if they have downloaded content from platforms such as BitTorrent.
In April 2017, the operator Euskatel was forced by a Bilbao court to give information about its clients to a film production company that used this data to threaten complaints against all those who downloaded a film illegally online.
The threat requested the payment of 150 euros in a few days if he did not want to go to trial for having obtained the movie “Once Upon a Time in Venice” through a P2P platform. Now this case has reached the highest judicial authority in the European Union that has ruled against users marking a new path for this type of content exchange platforms on the web.
The European Court of Justice “It does not oppose, in principle, nor to the systematic registration, by the owner of intellectual property rights and by a third party acting on their behalf, of IP addresses of users of peer-to-peer networks. whose internet connections were allegedly used in infringing activities against intellectual property“
“…nor to the communication of the names and postal addresses of those users to the aforementioned owner or to a third party to allow him to file a claim for compensation before the civil jurisdiction for the damage allegedly caused by the aforementioned usersIn short, the producers of content protected by copyright have the support of the judges to register the IP addresses of the offenders and request the data of these users from the operators.
They can ask for the name and postal address behind that IP address to take legal action. The European Court of Justice clarifies that the “initiatives and claims” of the producers must be “justified, proportionate and non-abusive and are legally based on a national legal measure“This response opens the door to a new framework for future multi-content copyright lawsuits.
However, it leaves the final decision to each country and to the national justice. In Spain, the Civil Procedure Law was reformed in 2015 to add a matter of Intellectual property in which the possibility that these companies could request the IP of the offenders was already created. The same does not happen with crimes of Honor, which would be another area for which it would be interesting to claim the data of the person who has used an internet connection to insult or slander another.
Now it is the turn of each national court to determine how this ruling may affect those affected by the Euskatel case. But for the rest of Internet users this content exchange system that for so many years has served the piracy market The use of these P2P platforms represents a greater risk.