The EU Court rules linking to free web content is legal

Last month the European Court ruled that websites can link to freely available content without the permission of the copyright holder.

In a dispute between journalists and a web company which has posted links to online news items written by the journalists on its site, the Swedish appeal court asked the EU Court to give a ruling on whether copyright law had been breached.

The European Court held that copyright law had not been breached since the articles to which the links were posted were already “freely available”. The position would have been different had the links bypassed a paywall, that is, had the link led to material that had purposely been restricted from being freely available.

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