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Links to file sharing programs not illegal in Norway

In June 2002, Phonofile sued Startsiden, Norway's most used public internet portal, arguing that by offering hyperlinks to file sharing programs under the "MP3" subcategory, Startsiden was liable for contributing to the infringement of Phonofile's exclusive right to electronic sale and distribution. Phonofile demanded that Startsiden remove the hyperlinks.


Although the Oslo District court found in its October 28, 2003 judgement that users, with the help of links from  had downloaded file sharing programs and distributed music files in the file sharing network thus infringing Phonofile's protected exclusive rights, it held, however, that - although file sharing programs can be used both illegally and legally - hyperlinking to file sharing program cannot in itself give rise to liability for the internet portal provider.


An article about that decision was published in IRIS Legal Observations of the European Audiovisual Observatory (English / German)

Text of decision 



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