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January 2023

Webseitenbetreiber und Shops: Neue Pflichten beim Urheberrecht

Important Changes in Copyright Law from June 7, 2023

Significant changes in copyright law will come into effect from June 7, 2023, affecting authors, website operators, and licensees of copyrighted works. These changes aim to promote transparency and fairness in dealing with intellectual property and strengthen copyright in the digital era.

Responsibilities with the Copyright Law Changes

Authors of works such as photos, articles, and music must now receive annual reports on the use of their works. This regulation ensures fair compensation for authors based on the proceeds from their works and safeguards their rights.

Website operators are facing new obligations. Starting from June 7, they must annually report to the web designer if they use graphics or other content that they did not create themselves. This enhances clarity and fairness in handling copyrighted content.

Copyright Law Changes in Reporting Usage

Previously, the author could request information about the use of their works. Now, it is the responsibility of the licensee – the user of the work – to provide this information. This marks a significant shift in responsibilities and strengthens copyright.

Emphasis on Author Contributions

It is important to note that this regulation was made possible by authors who have licensed their works under remunerative usage rights. This underscores the significance of the author’s contribution. Clear criteria need to be established for determining when the reporting obligation may be considered disproportionate. This responsibility falls to the legislator or the judiciary to protect the interests of authors.

Preparation for Website Operators and Online Shop Owners

Website operators and online shop owners must prepare by:

  1. Reviewing the copyrighted works they have licensed.
  2. Determining whether they are subject to a reporting obligation.
  3. Establishing a system for documenting the extent of usage, proceeds, and benefits from copyrighted content unless the exception under § 32d(2) UrhG applies.

These measures are essential to meet the new legal requirements while respecting the rights of authors. Promoting transparency and fairness in dealing with intellectual property contributes to creating a more balanced and just environment for creators and users and adapting copyright to the demands of the digital world.

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Online Plattformen: Neue Meldepflichten nach DAC7

Online Platforms: New Reporting Obligations under DAC7

To combat tax evasion, new reporting obligations are set to be introduced for operators of online platforms. This not only affects online marketplaces like eBay, Amazon, and but also other online platforms that facilitate personal services or rental income.

The new reporting obligations require platform operators to collect information about the sellers on their platforms and the revenue they generate, which must be reported to the relevant authority. In Germany, the Federal Central Tax Office (BZSt) is responsible for taxation.

The reportable information includes:

  • Full name
  • Address
  • Tax identification number
  • Financial account

However, the draft law is still in the legislative process. Therefore, starting in early 2024, reporting obligations for applicable platform operators could potentially apply retrospectively for the year 2023. The development will be monitored until then.

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Shops: Neues Lieferkettengesetz, Verpackungen und Elektrogesetz

Shops: New Supply Chain Law, Packaging Regulations, and Electrical Law

The Supply Chain Act (LkSG) came into effect on January 1, 2023. The aim of the LkSG is to enhance the protection of human rights in global supply chains. German companies with more than 3,000 employees are obliged to comply with it.

The new Packaging Law affects caterers, delivery services, and also restaurants. They are now required to offer both single-use and reusable containers for food and beverages. For more information on this, please refer to the official website of the German government regarding the Supply Chain and Packaging Law.

Starting from January 1, 2023, new regulations under the Electrical Law (ElektroG) apply. These regulations concern the labeling of B2B devices, the authorization of foreign manufacturers, and also the quarterly fee for all registered manufacturers. As of July 1, 2023, new due diligence requirements will also be introduced for electronic marketplaces and fulfillment service providers. This applies to service providers handling the shipping and returns of orders.

Marketplace operators and fulfillment service providers must ensure that only registered manufacturers of electrical and electronic products are allowed to offer their products. Manufacturers are also obligated to provide their registration numbers from the EAR Foundation to the marketplace operators and fulfillment service providers they use. Failure to comply with the new regulations after July 1, 2023, may result in substantial fines.

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Alle Unternehmer: In den USA wird die Datenmittlung neu geregelt

All Entrepreneurs: Data Transfer Regulations Changing in the USA

In 2023, the USA is undergoing a significant shift in data transfer regulations, which primarily impacts entrepreneurs and website operators. The use of tracking, analytics, and also marketing tools from the USA will once again be permissible. This development comes after the invalidation of the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield, which required companies using U.S. web tools and transferring personal data to the USA to take numerous measures to ensure compliance with the data protection requirements of the GDPR and the European Union.

To address this challenge and also ensure data transfer security in accordance with European data protection requirements, the European Union and the USA have agreed upon a new framework called the “EU-US Data Privacy Framework.” The aim of this agreement is to facilitate data transfer to the USA and ensure that personal data is transferred in a data protection-compliant and transparent manner.

An expected development is the introduction of “Privacy Shield 2.0,” which is anticipated to be implemented no later than mid-year. However, the exact timing of the implementation of this new data protection framework remains uncertain for now.

The need for these measures is to ensure that data transfer to the USA is in compliance with the data protection policies of the European Union. This not only safeguards consumer interests but also ensures business opportunities and the smooth utilization of web tools from the USA for entrepreneurs and website operators.

Overall, there are positive developments in the realm of data protection and data transfer between the European Union and the USA. These developments will bring more clarity and also security in the near future.

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Achtung Abmahnung : Prüfen Sie jetzt die Einbindung von Google Fonts

Caution: Cease and Desist Letter – Check Your Google Fonts Integration Now

On January 20, 2022, the Munich Regional Court ruled on the illegitimacy of remotely loading Google Fonts. Since then, more private individuals and also law firms have used the ruling to demand compensation, resulting in an increase in cease and desist letters. This has led to growing uncertainty among website operators.

Fonts that are downloaded and stored locally on your server are loaded directly from your server when visiting the website, rather than being downloaded online from Google’s servers. This means there is no connection to Google servers, and no data is sent to Google. Therefore, you are not affected by this ruling and are on the safe side.

Both you as the website operator and also Google LLC are responsible for protecting the personal data of website visitors. Failure to do so may result in legal costs due to GDPR violations.

What are the ways to respond to the cease and desist letter?

  1. Paying is the quickest option.
  2. Contacting an attorney.
  3. Waiting and also monitoring the situation.
  4. Handling the matter yourself.
  5. Filing a declaratory action in court.

However, the Munich Regional Court determined that any incorrect or missing consent also constitutes a violation of the general privacy rights of website visitors under Article 6(1)(a) of the GDPR. The automatic transmission of the IP address and the incorrect or omitted consent of the website visitor give rise to a claim for compensation for the resulting non-material damage under Article 82 of the GDPR.

The local approach, as per the Munich Regional Court, is privacy-compliant, as there is no data sent to Google when locally integrating Google Fonts.

For more information, click this.

Caution: Cease and Desist Letter – Check Your Google Fonts Integration Now Read More »

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