Feeds

Million pound Usenet indexer found guilty

Judge not impressed with 'we're only a search engine' claim

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Newzbin, a website which indexed Usenet files, but did not host them, has been found liable for copyright infringement by the High Court of Justice in London .

Newzbin was a members-only website and had turnover of more than £1m in 2009. It provided members with a search engine for Usenet groups. Precise terms of the judgement are still to be decided, but the site is unlikely to continue in its current form.

The Motion Picture Association, which brought the case, welcomed the verdict and said it helped clarify European law on "internet intermediaries".

Newzbin was less impressed but glad the MPA did not win the full injunction it was seeking.

Newzbin said:

We are very disappointed with the judgment. Regrettably the court has accepted the distorted and flawed evidence that Hollywood presented. Contrary to the finding of the court our site has not deliberately sought to index infringing material, nor to assist those of our users who use it for that purpose. The site provides a generalised search facility for binary content found on Usenet and not just infringing material. Any of the material we index can be found on any one of thousands of sites on the Internet so pursuit of us is a futile waste of everyones time and money."

Newzbin called on the MPA to address its broken business model instead of lobbying for restrictive laws like the Digital Enterprise Bill.

A spokeswoman for the MPA said it was not about to go to war with search engines like Google. She said: "It has taken eight months to get this to court. It was about how the search results were presented. The next step is not decided yet."

She said: "This verdict confirms that such websites have a duty of care to prevent the availability of illegal content on their websites."

The Federation Against Copyright Theft is taking action against streaming site Surf the Channel later in the year.

The judge, Mr Justice Kitchin, rejected the defendant's claims that the site was mainly used to search for Usenet discussions rather than binary content.

The full judgement is available here. ®

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
Banking apps: Handy, can grab all your money... and RIDDLED with coding flaws
Yep, that one place you'd hoped you wouldn't find 'em
No, thank you. I will not code for the Caliphate
Some assignments, even the Bongster decline must
Barnes & Noble: Swallow a Samsung Nook tablet, please ... pretty please
Novelslab finally on sale with ($199 - $20) price tag
Ballmer leaves Microsoft board to spend more time with his b-balls
From Clippy to Clippers: Hi, I see you're running an NBA team now ...
Video of US journalist 'beheading' pulled from social media
Yanked footage featured British-accented attacker and US journo James Foley
Primetime precrime? Minority Report TV series 'being developed'
I have to know. I have to find out what happened to my life
Broadband slow and expensive? Blame Telstra says CloudFlare
Won't peer, will gouge for Internet transit
Netflix swallows yet another bitter pill, inks peering deal with TWC
Net neutrality crusader once again pays up for priority access
prev story

Whitepapers

Best practices for enterprise data
Discussing how technology providers have innovated in order to solve new challenges, creating a new framework for enterprise data.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?