Europe\'s Highest Court Certifies Nintendo’s Anti-Piracy Product Security is Lawful

Lately, Nintendo has been on a  legal crack down, seeking and destroying all operations currently selling products intended for modifying its platforms, with the ultimate goal of circumventing the official functionality of the hardware. In this ongoing case with PC Box in Italy, Nintendo is once again attempting to shut down an operation that intends to circumvent the official functionality the hardware in its platforms. It would seem as if Nintendo has been successful with their efforts as they have now released a statement noting their approval of the action The Court of Justice of the European Union (\”CJEU\”) that has taken.

CJEU admits that Nintendo is right in filing the infringement claim, yet PC Box still asserts that its product is designed to allow the use of video and music content on Nintendo’s hardware, and therefore is not violating any EU copyright laws. It’s now up to the Italian court to rule whether or not PC Boxs intent was for non-copyright purpose. Considering Nintendo’s expression of pleasure in their press release, that just might have happened.

\”The Court of Justice of the European Union (“CJEU”), the highest court in the European Union, on January 23rd, 2014 handed down its decision in Case C-355/12 (Nintendo v PC Box). Nintendo is pleased that the ruling of the CJEU is generally consistent with the opinion of Advocate General Sharpston and Nintendo’s own observations to the questions referred by the Milan Tribunal.

The CJEU’s interpretation of the Copyright Directive appears to be in line with the international obligations of the European Union and its Member States under the WIPO Copyright Treaty and furthermore, supports those national Courts in Belgium, France, Germany, Netherlands, Spain and the UK which have already considered and applied the same provisions of EU law consistently resulting in many positive decisions against sellers of circumvention devices.

Nintendo will continue to fully engage with the Milan Tribunal, from whom the reference to the CJEU arose, in order to allow it to reach a considered reasoned decision in the civil case between Nintendo and PC Box. Furthermore, since Nintendo only ever utilises technological protection measures which are both necessary and proportionate to prevent widespread piracy of its intellectual property, and since the preponderant purpose of the circumvention devices marketed by PC Box is to enable piracy of legitimate video games, Nintendo is confident that the application of the guidance set out by the CJEU relating to proportionality will enable the Milan Tribunal to determine that the sale of circumvention devices is unlawful.

In the meantime, Nintendo maintains that the commercial dealings in circumvention devices infringe copyright laws as well as other intellectual property laws and Nintendo will continue to pursue those involved in the distribution of such devices.\”

Omar T