The highest court in Germany has ruled that controversial P2P site Rapidshare could be liable for copyright infringement if it fails to take down material after becoming aware of infringing content.
The ruling follows legal action brought by game-maker Atari against Rapidshare with respect to one game.
Rapidshare had previously successfully argued in the Higher Regional Court that it could not check the contents of every file on its servers and that it only offers storage and transfer services.
The Federal Supreme Court however said that once a company has been notified that a copyright violation has taken place it must put measures in place, within reasonable limits, to prevent further uploads of the same copyright work.
The court also said Rapidshare must go through its file collection and proactively delete copies of the relevant game content. If the company fails to undertake either action with respect to specific notified content it could be liable for damages.
The Supreme Court said that Rapidshare had to undertake such measures within “reasonable limits”, and it passed the case back to the Higher Regional Court to define what these are.Music Business Worldwide