CJEU rules the right to distribution only applies to tangible digital works - UsedSoft-doctrine of exhaustion does not apply to e-books

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In the decision discussed in this case comment (C-263/18, Tom Kabinet), the CJEU pulled the plug on second-hand markets for copyright-protected intangible works. From the decision it follows that the UsedSoft-doctrine, according to which the right to distribution exhausts after the first online sale of a computer program, only applies to other tangible (digital) works. The spreading of intangible works falls within the scope of the exclusive right to communicate to the public, to which the exemption of exhaustion does not apply. This marks a new era for the application of the principle of exhaustion in an online context.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean Intellectual Property Review
Number of pages4
Publication statusAccepted/In press - Apr 2020

ID: 239963273