Feeds

French anti-iTunes law is 'unconstitutional'

Law to be radically changed or rewritten

Top three mobile application threats

The controversial French law which would have forced Apple to make music from its iTunes online shop playable on any device has been rejected by the French Constitutional Council. The whole law may have to be rewritten.

Both houses of the French parliament, the Senate and the National Assembly, last month passed copyright legislation which has severe implications for Apple. The law sought to force online shops to sell music that would play on any device and devices that played music from any other shop.

Currently, music bought at Apple's iTunes shop can only be played on that company's iPod player. The French law sought to change that, but was modified as it passed through parliament to enable Apple to bypass its demands with the permission of the music copyright holder.

Now, the law may be changed radically by the Constitutional Council or might have to be rewritten and re-passed by parliament altogether.

The Constitutional Council reviews all laws after they have been passed to ensure that they do not conflict with the French constitution. One of the protections afforded by the constitution is a protection of property, and it was on this basis that the council rejected some aspects of the law.

A 12 page legal finding was published by the council late last week and it referred principally to the 1789 Declaration on Human Rights, part of which protects property. The document said any companies forced to make music playable on any device should receive compensation because the firm would be sharing copy protection technology it had built itself.

The constitutional review did not throw out the principle of enforced interoperability, though. Apple may still have to allow others some access to its iTunes system.

"It is good news for Apple because they receive monetary compensation, but much bigger bad news if it forces them to license iTunes," Jean-Baptiste Soufron of the Association of Audionautes told the New York Times. The association opposes copy restrictions.

Copyright © 2006, OUT-LAW.com

OUT-LAW.COM is part of international law firm Pinsent Masons.

Top three mobile application threats

More from The Register

next story
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Audio fans, prepare yourself for the Second Coming ... of Blu-ray
High Fidelity Pure Audio – is this what your ears have been waiting for?
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?
And just when Brit banking org needs £400m to stay afloat
Sorry London, Europe's top tech city is Munich
New 'Atlas of ICT Activity' finds innovation isn't happening at Silicon Roundabout
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Apple DOMINATES the Valley, rakes in more profit than Google, HP, Intel, Cisco COMBINED
Cook & Co. also pay more taxes than those four worthies PLUS eBay and Oracle
It may be ILLEGAL to run Heartbleed health checks – IT lawyer
Do the right thing, earn up to 10 years in clink
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a defence for mobile apps
In this whitepaper learn the various considerations for defending mobile applications; from the mobile application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies needed to properly assess mobile applications risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.