May 7, 2010
By Ezra Brook, editor,

A German appeals court dismissed a lower court verdict against RapidShare, citing that the company can not be responsible for users’ activities.  The Dusseldorf-based court said that there are no reasonable ways for RapidShare to control file uploads without possibly restricting local fair use laws.

Last year, a lower court issued a preliminary injunction against RapidShare for hosting copies of movies, music and e-books. However, the appeals court concluded that most people utilize RapidShare for legal use cases.

To overcome the copyrights issues, the Switzerland based RapidShare has been trying to help entertainment companies monetize their content. For this purpose, it launched a movie download service last December for right holders to sell content to RapidShare community.

RapidShare posted a short news release regarding its win over the court case here:

Court: RapidShare AG not liable for user uploads

File hosting company wins appeals procedure

Cham, May 3, 2010 – RapidShare AG has won its appeal against Capelight Pictures in the Court of Appeals Dusseldorf, Germany (Oberlandesgericht Dusseldorf). Prior to this, plaintiff had obtained a preliminary injunction against RapidShare at Dusseldorf’s district court (Landgericht Dusseldorf), by which the file hosting company was enjoined from hosting certain movies its clients had uploaded. This judgment has now been reversed by the Appellate Court.

Christian Schmid, founder of RapidShare: “We are very happy about the judgment. The court has confirmed that RapidShare is not responsible for the contents of files uploaded by its users. The judgment shows that attempts to denounce our business model as illegal will not be successful in the long run. With its 1-click-filehosting model, RapidShare responds to legitimate interests of its users and will continue to do so in the future.”

Online data backup and storage laws in Germany and South Korea have made it very difficult for online backup companies to offer their services and grow in these countries, especially in the consumer sector. We, at, believe that this court case might pave the way for online data backup services to flourish in Germany. Now, the next battle ground will be in South Korea.

The full court decision has been published here in German and you may read the Google Translate English version here.

Related News:

Court: RapidShare doesn’t need to filter user uploads

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