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date: 11 July 2020

Abstract and Keywords

In the past few years, the practice of enforcing intellectual property by ordering internet access providers to block infringing websites has been rapidly growing, especially in Europe. European Courts, such as the CJEU and ECtHR, advance several factors to inform—from the perspective of different fundamental rights—the website-blocking practices for copyright enforcement in Europe. This chapter provides an overview of these factors, starting with the freedom of expression framework for website blocking and the rather revolutionary, at least for the European judiciary, concept of user rights that has being construed under it. It then proceeds to discuss the limits of intermediaries’ involvement in digital enforcement dictated by the EU-specific freedom to conduct a business. The required efficacy of the blocking resulting from the human right to property framework for intellectual property is also examined. Potential effects on the website-blocking practices of the recent EU copyright reform are then discussed before concluding.

Keywords: online intermediaries, liability, blocking orders, human rights, CJEU, ECtHR

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