Israeli Court Enforces CC License For The First Time

Author:Mr Tal Kaplan and Haim Ravia
Profession:Pearl Cohen Zedek Latzer

Last week, the District Court of Jerusalem enforced a Creative Commons license against a commercial user of photographs [C 3560/09 Avi Reuveni v. Mapa Publishing Ltd. Hebrew PDF]. The Court ruled that the infringement of 15 copyrighted photographs should be considered as 15 separate acts of infringement, rather than a single joint act. The decision marked the first time in Israel that a court has enforced a Creative Commons license. Pearl Cohen Zedek Latzer represented the plaintiffs in this pioneering case. The plaintiffs, Mssrs. Avi Reuveni and Amir Rivlin, uploaded photographs they had taken during a journey to Jerusalem to The photographs were published under a Creative Commons license which permitted non-commercial use, prohibited derivative works and required attribution. The defendant, Mapa Publishing, copied and used the photographs in a book it published, without receiving authorization from the plaintiffs and without proper attribution. One of the photographs was also published on the defendant's website. Judge Zvi Zylbertal had no doubt as to the plaintiffs' copyrights in the photographs and the infringement of those rights by the defendant. The Creative Commons license covering the works was merely mentioned in passing, and was accepted as a valid license that was breached. The main question was the sum of damages to be awarded and how it should be calculated – both sides presenting different interpretations of the Copyrights Act 2007....

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