PRCA and Meltwater defend UK Web users from unintentional copyright infringement in the UK Supreme Court

 

London, 8th February – The Public Relations Consultants Association (PRCA) and Meltwater Group are taking the fight to protect Internet users from unintentionally infringing copyright law in a landmark copyright case at the Supreme Court next week. 

On 11 and 12 February, the highest court in the UK will decide on the right of everyone in the UK to view and read online articles without unintentionally infringing copyright law. 

The PRCA and Meltwater are contesting an earlier Court of Appeal decision that the temporary copies made through the purely technological process of displaying a Web page on a computer to enable a user to read that Web page is a violation of UK copyright law if made without the explicit consent of the copyright owner.

In order to view articles online, temporary copies of the works are made automatically within the user’s computer for the sole purpose of enabling the user to read or view the content. The PRCA argues that the Court of Appeal ruling was wrong, because reading or viewing a work is not unlawful so Web browsing should be allowed by the temporary copy exception in EU copyright law.

Francis Ingham, PRCA Director General, said: “We believe that the Court of Appeal’s ruling has implications on the millions of people using the Internet who, due to that decision, are now infringing copyright by viewing articles that have been lawfully put online.”

The hearings will take place on the following dates/times:

·         Monday 11 February: 11.00-13.00; 14.00-16.00

·         Tuesday 12 February: 10.30-13.00; 14.00-16.00

The Supreme Court is the final court of appeal in the UK for civil cases, and for criminal cases from England, Wales and Northern Ireland. It hears cases of the greatest public or constitutional importance affecting the whole population.

-ENDS-

PRCA contact:

Tom Hawkins

PRCA Policy and Research Manager

+44 7233 6026

tom.hawkins@prca.org.uk

Meltwater Media Contact:

Heidi Myers

Manager, UK Marketing Communications

+44 7971 843653

pr@meltwater.com

 

About the PRCA

Who we are: Founded in 1969, the PRCA is the professional body that represents UK PR consultancies, in-house communications teams, PR freelancers and individuals. The PRCA promotes all aspects of public relations and internal communications work, helping teams and individuals maximise the value they deliver to clients and organisations.

What we do: The Association exists to raise standards in PR and communications, providing members with industry data, facilitating the sharing of communications best practice and creating networking opportunities.

How we do it and make a difference: All PRCA members are bound by a professional charter and codes of conduct, and benefit from exceptional training. The Association also works for the greater benefit of the industry, sharing best practice and lobbying on the industry's behalf e.g. fighting the NLA's digital licence.

Who we represent: The PRCA represents many of the major consultancies in the UK, and currently has more than 300 agency members from around the world, including the majority of the top 150 UK consultancies. We also represent over 100 in-house communications teams from multinationals, UK charities and leading UK public sector organisations.

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