English High Court finds that headlines can be independent copyright works

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13 January 2011

In September 2010, we published an In Brief on Justice Bennett’s decision in Fairfax Media Publications Pty Ltd v Reed International Books Australia Pty Ltd [2010] FCA 984 (Fairfax) in which her Honour held that the newspaper headlines in question were not protected by copyright under Australian law.

In a recent decision of the English High Court in The Newspaper Licensing Agency Ltd & Ors v Meltwater Holdings BV & Ors [2010] EWHC 3099 (Ch), Justice Proudman reached an opposite conclusion determining that newspaper headlines are capable of copyright protection and that users of online media-monitoring services will infringe the copyright of publishers unless they obtain an appropriate licence.


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