CEDRO, IFRRO’s Spanish member, has recently won a case for infringement of intellectual property rights on its virtual campus against the "Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona" (UAB). This court decision is the first of its type in Spain.
The ruling states that UAB digitized and made available to the public protected works without authorization on its virtual campus, and so "infringes intellectual property rights." The judge has directed UAB to "immediately cease and refrain from any future act of scanning or digitization, reproduction and making available on its digital platforms, virtual learning environment or intranets, any copyrighted intellectual works in CEDRO’s repertoire ".
The ruling also obliges UAB to "withdraw in no more than 15 days, and by appropriate means erase all existing files and digital content in its virtual campus or equivalent communication network, containing works in whole or in part, belonging to the repertoire of CEDRO which have been made available to students on the network without authorization from CEDRO and / or its owners".
The Decision sets out a compensation for the damages caused to authors and publishers due to the illegal use of works belonging to CEDRO´s repertoire without the compulsory authorization. Finally, the university will have to publish the decision of the judgment in two national newspapers and on its website.
CEDRO has also filed two lawsuits against two other Spanish universities, that are still pending.
Olav Stokkmo, IFRRO’s CEO, congratulates CEDRO on the result of this important court case, which confirms that that reproduction, making available or distribution of educational material clearly requires the agreement with the rightholders concerned or a RRO. The decision also reflects the spirit of the article 27 of the Declaration of Human Rights on the right to the protection of the moral and material interests resulting from any scientific, literary or artistic production. “Reproduction Rights Organisations such as CEDRO, play a vital role in ensuring that high value educational material can be shared with educational institutions but it cannot be at the expense of the rights of the creators and publishers”, he said. “RROs support access by acting as intermediaries between rightholders and users,” he added.