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The technique of framing is not a copyright infringement

The embedding of third party contents on the proper webpage through the technique of framing is not to be considered a copyright infringement, as decided by the European Court of Justice in a ruling from October 21, 2014 (Case No. C-348/13).

The plaintiff was the producer of a film and held the exclusive commercial exploitation rights, the film was available on YouTube. The defendant embedded the film on his own webpage using the technique of framing.  When a visitor on the webpage clicks on the link, the film opens on the defendant's webpage. The visitor does not recognise that the film is downloaded from another webpage. The plaintiff filed legal action and asked the defendant to issue a cease and desist declaration. The Federal Court stated that there is a copyright infringement when the film is shown on screen again. The Federal Court asked  the EuGH to decide on the question whether there is an act of communication to the public  undertaken  because the defendant made use of the technique of framing. The defendant made the work utterly his own without even making a copy.

The EuGH decided that there is no act of communication to the public only because the defendant made use of the technique of framing. In two different cases we can talk about an act of communication to the public. Either when someone uses another technical procedure and  when the communication is made to a certain public the author did not consider at the moment he made his work available.  For any type of framing, as stated by the EuGH, the situation is different. The film is still available in Internet, the same technique has been used. The reproduction is not aimed at a new audience, because the film is already available in Internet, it is sufficient to watch it on YouTube.