Germany is the latest country enmeshed in a debate about the pros and cons of ISP-level blocks of filesharing websites. A case brought by GEMA against telco Deutsche Telekom will have its latest day in court this November, as the collecting society attempts to force the ISP to block access to cyberlocker-linking site 3DL.tv.
The case has been rumbling since 2013, when according to TorrentFreak, GEMA was knocked back by the Higher Regional Court of Hamburg “on the basis that Deutsche Telekom is not the direct host” of the site. Now GEMA is taking the case to Germany’s supreme court, and if it prevails, it could open the floodgates for blocks on a host of other sites accused of facilitating piracy. Experiences elsewhere in Europe are mixed of such blocks: critics argue that they don’t dissuade hardcore pirates or reduce levels of piracy meaningfully, but the rightsholders pushing for such blocks still see merit in making such sites inaccessible to mainstream internet users.