A federal appeals court ruled Thursday that ISP’s such as video-sharing sites like Vimeo are protected by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act for pre-1972 musical recordings uploaded by their users.
The record labels had sued the YouTube-like site and successfully convinced a district court judge that, because pre-1972 recordings fell under state laws and not federal copyright law, the DMCA didn’t apply. The 2nd US Circuit Court of Appeals reversed that decision, and also overturned the lower court that ruled the DMCA didn’t grant so-called safe-harbor passage to ISPs whose employees saw infringements on their platforms uploaded by their users.
The decision once again affirms that the DMCA extends immunity to Internet Service Providers for the infringement of their customers if an ISP removes material at the request of the right holder. The decision was akin to an earlier and popular decision called Viacom v. YouTube, which the record labels said was off base in the case against Vimeo.
In the case decided Thursday, the court ruled that a “showing by plaintiffs of no more than that some employee of Vimeo had some contact with a user-posted video that played all, or nearly all, of a recognizable song is not…