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Droit de Suite – The Buyer Pays the Bill

Christie’s wins battle for a new interpretation of the “Droit de Suite” regulation in France.

A recent decision of the French Supreme Court[1] is going to overturn the law in France that requires the Artist’s Resale Right (Droit de Suite) being paid by vendors.

The resale right forms an integral part of copyright and is an essential prerogative for authors.

It is an unassignable and inalienable right, enjoyed by the author of an original artistic work, or their heirs, to an economic interest in successive sales of the work concerned.

The resale right is intended to ensure that the artist receives part of the resale value of a work of art. Read more

Has a new wave on restitution of cultural objects started?

The trend is toward considering the exhibits provenance in museums and galleries across Europe

Working in The Hague, being involved in the subject of Art Law, my mind goes to the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict.

An excellent combination, working here where the first use of the term Cultural Property occurred in an international legal context.

However, what is Cultural Property? Read more

CNIL Sanctions Google 50 Million Euros for Non-Compliance to the GDPR

On May 25th, 2018 the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) entered into force. From that date forth, companies were required to comply with the text in order to best protect citizens’ personal data within the European Union.

In France, it is the French Data Protection Authority (CNIL) which monitors the compliance of companies with the Regulation and imposes appropriate sanctions. In fact, some major Web players have already been sanctioned by the Commission for the processing of individuals’ personal data.

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Xi Jinping visits Macron to strengthen China-EU relationship

On the third day of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to France, the French President Emmanuel Macron took the unprecedented step of establishing a united European front to compete with China’s global hegemony, specifically China’s One Belt One Road strategy. Macron invited EU leaders Angela Merkel and Jean-Claude Juncker to join the meeting with Xi. This meeting was referred as a “high-level meeting on the challenges of multilateralism” by the French government. The core of this meeting was the discussion of climate change and multilateral relations between Europe and China. Macron’s intention of forging a United European front upon Xi’s visit cannot be easily assumed, however, it can be assumed that Macron keeps a questioning attitude towards the two-way street of investment and trade between the Europe and China regarding China’s Belt and Road Initiative. Read more

Blockchain Evidence Technology Recognised, is the Blockchain Court Far Away?

In the discussion on blockchain technology, you may have heard of blockchain evidence technology. What is blockchain evidence technology? Well, it is a kind of electronic evidence, which contains the three characteristics, the same as normal evidence: legality, relevance and objectivity, as well as the third-party notarization, decentralised structure, timestamp record, low cost, high credibility and other advantages. Every time of access, change, etc. will have a record, so each action is very well documented. Read more

China to Establish the Second and Third Internet Court

The Internet has become the second space in human life, changing people’s production and lifestyle, refreshing the concept of law, judicial practice and public demand for court services. The characteristics of virtuality, cross-regionality, and decentralization of the Internet have created enormous challenges to the existing legal theory and judicial system. Parties who are used to the traditional judicial rules and litigation methods are facing high cost and long process for distant disputes, which is not efficient at all, thus an online solution channel is in high need. These facts have made the Central Committee in China decide to set up more Internet court.

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A new possibility to block online file sharing platforms?

European Court of Justice (ECJ) rules that The Pirate Bay infringes copyrights

With its decision on June, 14th the ECJ might have paved the road for proceeding against online sharing platforms. Up to now taking legal action in order to restrict the offer of copyright-protected works was rather complicated and did not guarantee sustainable success. The reason for that is, amongst others, that the files on these sites aren’t placed online by the platform’s operators but by the users. So the rightholders had to take action against the sharing platform’s complicated infrastructures as well as each user separately. However, the ECJ decided recently, that the operators of such a platform play an essential role in making the works available and therefore may constitute an infringement of copyright. Read more

Don’t wait anymore and file your designs!

Although Spinners are a great success in schoolyards all around the world, their creator, Catherine Hettinger, a 62-year old American citizen, does not benefit from this creation.

While Catherine Hettinger created the play item in the 1990s, she only filed a patent in 1997 in Los Angeles, thereby gaining rights on her creation. In 2005, these rights had to be renewed, but as the creator could not pay for the renewal, she lost any entitlements on them.

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Now you can watch Netflix everywhere in the EU!

EU Parliament makes sure that you can watch your favourite shows during your holidays 

The access to subscribed online paid services such as Netflix, Sky, Amazon Prime or Spotify abroad has been mostly restricted so far. But this is going to change in a few months, since the EU Parliament has now approved a new regulation that enables EU citizens who are subscribed to an online paid service in their home country to use the same service with the same content in any other EU country. Read more

New conviction for Jeff Koons: Art of appropriation or act of infringement?

Article 4 of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen proclaims, « freedom consist in being able to do anything that does not harm others ».  Bearing this in mind, while American judges seem to seek a fair balance between private and public interest, French ones maintain a strict interpretation of the protection of the author’s rights on his work.

This strict interpretation of the French Copyright Act led to a recent verdict that Jeff Koons’ company was infringing, while Koons’ defence was built on the exceptions of freedom of expression and parody. Read more