Heise ordered to remove link to Slysoft.com

'Aider and abettor' to CD ripping


A Munich court has ruled that German news site Heise Online was wrong to publish a link to Slysoft.com, a company that advertises software that can play, copy and rip protected audio CDs. In January the German IT site received a writ from the German music industry preventing it from publishing links to the company.

A court last week ruled that, by providing a link to the company's homepage, Heise intentionally provided "assistance in the fulfillment of unlawful acts" and is therefore liable as "an aider and abettor", as described in Section 830 of the German Civil Code.

While no direct link was provided to download the software, it was easy to find - something the court found unacceptable. Heise argued that the link can also be found by using a search engine, but the court said that although the publisher has a right to provide these links, the provisions of copyright law limit the freedom of the press.

Originally, Heise was also held responsible by the record industry for "advertising for the sale of illegal goods" and for providing "instructions on how to get around anti-piracy measures", but the court dismissed these accusations.

More importantly, the court ruled that the music industry did not have the right to prevent the article from being published altogether.

The court specified the amount in dispute at €500,000, which reflects the "considerable profit losses" that may have arisen as a result of the publication of the links. However, Heise is not required - as yet - to compensate the music industry. It is unclear whether the music industry will try and sue Heise again for damages. Heise is considering appealing the case. ®

Related stories

High Court orders ISPs to name file-sharers
Oz investigators bust 'file-sharing' ISP
Moscow prosecutor lets low-cost MP3 site off the hook


Other stories you might like

  • North Korea pulled in $400m in cryptocurrency heists last year – report

    Plus: FIFA 22 players lose their identity and Texas gets phony QR codes

    In brief Thieves operating for the North Korean government made off with almost $400m in digicash last year in a concerted attack to steal and launder as much currency as they could.

    A report from blockchain biz Chainalysis found that attackers were going after investment houses and currency exchanges in a bid to purloin funds and send them back to the Glorious Leader's coffers. They then use mixing software to make masses of micropayments to new wallets, before consolidating them all again into a new account and moving the funds.

    Bitcoin used to be a top target but Ether is now the most stolen currency, say the researchers, accounting for 58 per cent of the funds filched. Bitcoin accounted for just 20 per cent, a fall of more than 50 per cent since 2019 - although part of the reason might be that they are now so valuable people are taking more care with them.

    Continue reading
  • Tesla Full Self-Driving videos prompt California's DMV to rethink policy on accidents

    Plus: AI systems can identify different chess players by their moves and more

    In brief California’s Department of Motor Vehicles said it’s “revisiting” its opinion of whether Tesla’s so-called Full Self-Driving feature needs more oversight after a series of videos demonstrate how the technology can be dangerous.

    “Recent software updates, videos showing dangerous use of that technology, open investigations by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and the opinions of other experts in this space,” have made the DMV think twice about Tesla, according to a letter sent to California’s Senator Lena Gonzalez (D-Long Beach), chair of the Senate’s transportation committee, and first reported by the LA Times.

    Tesla isn’t required to report the number of crashes to California’s DMV unlike other self-driving car companies like Waymo or Cruise because it operates at lower levels of autonomy and requires human supervision. But that may change after videos like drivers having to take over to avoid accidentally swerving into pedestrians crossing the road or failing to detect a truck in the middle of the road continue circulating.

    Continue reading
  • Alien life on Super-Earth can survive longer than us due to long-lasting protection from cosmic rays

    Laser experiments show their magnetic fields shielding their surfaces from radiation last longer

    Life on Super-Earths may have more time to develop and evolve, thanks to their long-lasting magnetic fields protecting them against harmful cosmic rays, according to new research published in Science.

    Space is a hazardous environment. Streams of charged particles traveling at very close to the speed of light, ejected from stars and distant galaxies, bombard planets. The intense radiation can strip atmospheres and cause oceans on planetary surfaces to dry up over time, leaving them arid and incapable of supporting habitable life. Cosmic rays, however, are deflected away from Earth, however, since it’s shielded by its magnetic field.

    Now, a team of researchers led by the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) believe that Super-Earths - planets that are more massive than Earth but less than Neptune - may have magnetic fields too. Their defensive bubbles, in fact, are estimated to stay intact for longer than the one around Earth, meaning life on their surfaces will have more time to develop and survive.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022