French provider wins lawsuit about website

By EDRi · December 3, 2003

The French provider RAS does not have to remove a website from the
trade-union SUD-PTT. On 24 November a Paris court rejected the claim from
2 telemarketing companies that the website was both hurtful and
defamatory. The rejection is technical; the companies should have chosen 1
single argument for their complaint.

The contested remarks state that one of the companies is being reigned by
‘little bosses’, a manager is described as being unable to distinguish
between friendship and hierarchical relationships and a female president
is disqualified as being perfectly aware of the situation, but not acting
on it – as usual. (See EDRI-gram nr. 21, 5 November 2003)

The companies are ordered to pay 2.000 Euro to the trade union and 3.000
Euro to provider RAS. The judge explicitly authorised to put the remarks
back online, since the editor removed them before the ruling.

EDRI-member IRIS voluntarily joined the defendants in the lawsuit. IRIS’
Meryem Marzouki is excited about the verdict. “It shows that the current
French law shouldn’t be modified towards recognition of notice and take
down procedure (this is in the draft law for e-commerce directive
transposition): if even a judge cannot find evidence that content is
illegal, how should a private party or an ISP be able to do that?”

Press release IRIS and RAS (26.11.2003)

“Independent providers are not responsible for content, at the moment” (25.11.2003)