German Court Stops RapidShare Book Downloads, Threatens Fines and Jail time

In Global Trade Talk by Edward Nawotka

By Edward Nawotka

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Several of the largest textbook companies in the world, including Bedford, Freeman & Worth; Cengage Learning; Elsevier; the McGraw-Hill Companies; Pearson; and John Wiley & Sons — have won a preliminary injunction in Hamburg, Germany against Swiss-basd filesharing Web site RapidShare, preventing the service from distributing copies of some 148 of the company’s titles.

In a report in the Chronicle of Higher Education, Association of American Publishers president, called the decision, which took effect on February 17, a “big deal.”

The court added, that not only must the site stop offering downloads of the titles stated in the lawsuit, but also “It is not only necessary to promptly block access to the specific file, but rather to also take precautions going beyond this in order to prevent to the largest possible extent the occurrence of further similar infringements.”

Violation of the ruling will cost RapidShare some 250,000 euros (about $340,000) or jail time for company executives of up to two years per violation.

Read the Court Decision and the Press Release from the publishers.

About the Author

Edward Nawotka

A widely published critic and essayist, Edward Nawotka serves as a speaker, educator and consultant for institutions and businesses involved in the global publishing and content industries. He was also editor-in-chief of Publishing Perspectives since the launch of the publication in 2009 until January 2016.