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state court ruling against forum operator

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in germany there has been a ruling against a large publisher operating a forum.


the written explanation of the ruling has now been publishged by the court. (4 months after the ruling).

in it online forums are seen as something inherently dangerous and that the operators of such forums should be held especially responsible for anything published on those forums.

it means that anything posted would need to be reviewed before it is published to avoid the forum operator being held responsible for any content that is against the law.

the court chose to ignore the comment by the publishger that their forum receives about 200.000 posts a month and that would mean an insurmountable workload.

the publisher will of course challenge the ruling and take it to the next level...


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That's bad, it would make us responsible if a member here post something really really bad. It's always the opinion of the poster, so how on earth can the admin be responsible? Seems the judge is behind in technology.

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I definately think the judge is nuts, but I can see some of his point. You are responsible for you kids and anything that happens on your property.

For instance,  I am responsible for anything my tenants do, even though I live 45 miles away, according to the city courts. I do try to  get it passed onto the tenants, but as the property owner, I am still somewhat responsible. Yeah, nuts. But they figure that they can scare me a lot easier, since I have a lot more at risk. The tenant can just move if they want, and I still own the building.  ;)  :angry4:

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When it comes to my website (this website for those of you that don't know yet) nobody will EVER tell me what content can and can not be on my website except me.  I am positive that my many disclaimers I have would release me from any personal liability.  My members are told in every possible way

Please proceed with caution and do your homework.
testmy.net will not be responsible for any errors or omissions in articles or postings' date=' for hyperlinks embedded in messages' date=' or for any results obtained from the use of such information[/quote'']

See the whole C section of http://www.testmy.net/legal/terms_of_use.html

My personal favorites are the end of Sections C.7 & D.1

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I believe this will be an ongoing battle, there are sooo many people that are unwilling to accept responsability for themselves , as well as there are just as many who state we as the people , should controll "things" for them . This snowballs into effects such as helmet laws. I understand concern for minors , and there will most likely be restrictions.But to scan forums for conversation?  NOT!!

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ca3le, the site has its legalities in order. they printed an article on a company that has people download malware from their site in spam e-mails. in the forum concerning the article a user suggested running scripts to dl the file repeatedly, effectivel ddos'ing the site. the site owner in question took this as a reason to have an attorney issue an admonishment. this is a german legal technicality, i am unaware wether or not there is something similar under us law. the way it works is that an attorney or a client finds something in print or online or sees an action that someone takes in his/her business practices that is illegal/questionable/infriges copyright or trademark law etc. etc.. etc. the attorney then sends an admonishment to the person in perceived violation that includes the reason, a bill for the legal fees to work up the admonishment and a statement to be signed by the admonished that under penalty of xxx dollars he/she will not repeat said action in the future. the site received this admonishment and then removed the posts in question but refused to either pay the bill or sign the statement, stating that they were responsible for content that they were or had been made aware of but that other posts did not fall under their responsibility, it being an online forum etc. etc. etc. the attorney then proceeded to take them to court and won the ruling in question 4 months ago. in the now released written reasoning behind the ruling the court states that operators of something so obviously dangerous as an online forum should be held especially responsible for the goings on in said forum. they should check each message before it is made available to the general public.

in effect this means that if someone here suggests "just download office from limewire" upon someone asking where he can get a good free word proccessor and microsoft issuing said admonishment to this site because it is promoting theft.

i will post an english version of the article on the written explanation as soon as i find one if you care to read it. maybe i will see if i can scare up an online version of the whole court document and run it through babelfish.

edit. by the way, as soon as the ruling came out and bvefore the written explanation was even there many operators found themselves the target of similar admonishments for different perceived violations. now that the written text is out it will likely get worse. the publisher in question is however ignoring the threat so far and waiting for a ruling from a higher court.

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i think that that owner failed to get a good lawyer for himself...and i'm positive that US law covers this differently...but this is exactly why we don't allow links posted to sites that offer illegal activity...talking about it???...that hurts nothing as long as it's talk and not instructions...

i gotta look at the stats...but i wonder how many posts we get a month...

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