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  1. #1
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    Apr 2013
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    If we own a CDN, and a warez site uses us to host their images, can we face trouble?

    Disclaimer: We do not own a CDN.

    Just one question that I had in mind.

    Let's suppose we own a CDN, and a warez/movies/mp3 website uses us to host their static files and images. No copyright-protected images are hosted, only the images required for the normal design of the website. No illegal files are hosted with us.

    This website has some huge traffic and the use of a CDN saves them a lot since bandwidth is mostly expensive where they host (hide?) their servers.

    Would the CDN company face problems just by hosting these static files?

  2. #2
    I'm not a lawyer, and this isn't legal advice. Please talk with your lawyer for a legally accurate answer.

    Having said that, a CDN provider in the United States should be okay, as long as it responds to DMCA requests/notifications as the law requires - that's part of what the law was designed to do. Outside the United States, you'll obviously need to research your local law, but most countries (European, anyway) have some similar means of keeping the provider out of trouble if a client is offering content they shouldn't.

  3. #3
    If you do not encourage your clients to host infringement content and if some users still upload it (which is impossible to avoid this by 100% in any hosting business, however most companies run certain cleanups to remove such content if it's spotted) then it should be fine as long as you actually respond to abuse reports and DMCA requests.

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Location
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    Does not matter if the files are hosted or not, as far as I am aware linking is illegal as you are encouraging the download of illegal content (no matter how you look at this) you could still possibly get in some form of strife.

    More than likely though you would receive a Cease and Desist on the website and it's operations and to request for the removal of the site/content.
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  5. #5
    Weigh the pros and cons. Is it worth the risk? Be sure to comply with all DMCA requests.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
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    Canada
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    Quote Originally Posted by v33usa View Post
    Let's suppose we own a CDN, and a warez/movies/mp3 website uses us to host their static files and images. No copyright-protected images are hosted, only the images required for the normal design of the website. No illegal files are hosted with us.
    No. Only if they use you for their box covers. Those are protected by copyright and they have no right to be showing them.

    If they're using you for their design, it's all good - legally. You wouldn't have any reason to receive dmca notices for them. You might at some point get a C&D order sent to you saying a illegal site is using you to host their design files, but doubtful unless it's a massive website and they're grasping at straws to get it down.
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
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    In the Internets
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    3,622
    If you know there is warez on the server and refuse to take action, you will get into trouble.

    If you have terms and policies about what can be uploaded, someone doesn't obey those, you get an abuse complaint and you take action, you should be good.

  8. #8
    I am not a lawyer so take this for what it's worth. The latest case I am aware of involved a large torrent site hosted in Eastern Europe. The host for the site was asked by the authorities to lock it and hand all the material. No action was taken against the host. I believe you should be safe as long as you repy to any complaints promptly and do what the authorities say.

  9. #9

  10. #10
    Put another way, OP: if you don't do something, someone else might do that for you. Or worse, to you, legally justified or not.

    If you're in the U.S., look up DMCA as some said. Wherever you really are, look up at least your local laws.

  11. #11
    Join Date
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    Thanks guys!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    California
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    There's a "Safe Harbor" provision in the DMCA that protects hosts in just this type of situation. It is the same kind of law that prevents a librarian from being responsible for some illegal content in a book in the library. The host cannot possibly know every byte stored by every customer, and has no obligation to search through his customer's files to see if they comply.

    Without checking with a lawyer, which is what a business should do, you can read a lot of material on it at places like http://eff.org

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Posts
    182
    Consult a lawyer to find out the jurisdiction where you live.

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