28 May 2015
Reporter: Tammy Facey

English High Court orders e-book copyright blocks

The English High Court has ordered ISPs BT, EE, Virgin Media, Sky and TalkTalk to block seven infringing websites.

The Publishers Association applied under Section 97A of the Copyright Designs and Patents Act for a blocking order against the top five UK ISPs over websites that contain substantial amounts of infringing content.

According to the association, up to 90 percent of the material on the sites infringes copyright.

Collectively, the sites hold around 10 million e-book titles and have made “substantial” amounts of money, according to the Publishers Association.

This has been achieved primarily through referral fees and advertising, none of which has reached the publisher or author of the works.

Rights owners have also requested that Google remove over 1.75 million URLs from its search results, which link to copyrighted material on the sites.

Richard Mollet, chief executive of the Publishers Association, said: “A third of publisher revenues now come from digital sales but unfortunately this rise in the digital market has brought with it a growth in online infringement.”

“We are very pleased that the High Court has granted this order and, in doing so, recognises the damage being inflicted on UK publishers and authors by these infringing websites.” added Mollet.

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