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Author Topic: Why was someone arrested over the TV Links website?  (Read 2624 times)

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    • - Samker's Computer Forum
Why was someone arrested over the TV Links website?
« on: 26. October 2007., 00:38:19 »
As reported in the Guardian, last Thursday a 26-year-old Cheltenham man was arrested and the site,, was closed . According to the Gloucester police, the arrest was carried out for alleged violations of Section 92 of the Trade Marks Act.

The man was not charged and the case remains under investigation, says Eddy Leviten of the Federation Against Copyright Theft. He likened the activity of TV Links to someone who advertises a car that is not theirs. "The main issue is that the original material is stolen," he alleges. TV Links was collecting links to movies such as the new Nancy Drew film that were allegedly illegally recorded in the cinema and then hosted on Chinese websites, he said. The federation is pursuing the websites that host the material, but it is difficult to pursue sites not under English jurisdiction.

The law governing the case is not clear. Section 92 of the Trade Marks Act is frequently used by the federation to pursue illegal CD and DVD copiers, but lawyers said the act relates to goods and has not been applied to audio-visual material that is not on a physical disc or other storage media.

Under US law and the MGM v Grokster case in 2005, the US Supreme Court found Grokster liable for "inducement", encouraging others to infringe copyright. However, English law does not recognise inducement. But this case turns on the issue of linking and the Trade Marks Act., the blog of international law firm Pinsent Mason says: "It is not clear how the provision of links will be prosecuted as a criminal offence."

Alex, writing on the Impact blog from UK law firm Freeth Cartwright, agrees. "On the facts that we know so far, it is difficult to see how the providing of links to infringing copies of TV shows gives rise to a civil or criminal liability under UK law," he said.

The Trade Marks Act may not fit the alleged crime. "The Trade Marks Act makes the unauthorised use of trade marks in relation to goods an offence; but this is a law that was written to catch counterfeit goods," said Kim Walker, head of intellectual property at Pinsent Masons. "The provision of links is surely a service, not a sale of goods. It seems an unlikely way to deal with the problem."

Alex at Freeth Cartwright says: "Such links might constitute an offence under other parts of copyright law (distributing infringing copies or communicating copies to the public in the course of business), but it is again difficult to see how the facts meet these offences."

(Copyright by Kevin Anderson & Guardian Unlimited)

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Why was someone arrested over the TV Links website?
« on: 26. October 2007., 00:38:19 »


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