Professor Nield published in January issue of Modern Law Review

Professor Sarah Nield’s article, co-authored with Professor Sue Bright and Professor Sarah Blandy, and entitled ‘The Dynamics of Enduring Property Relations’ will be published in the January issue of the Modern Law Review.  Since its foundation over seventy years ago, The Modern Law Review has been providing a unique forum for the critical examination of contemporary legal issues and of the law as it functions in society. The Review today stands as one of Europe’s leading scholarly journals.

The article proposes a new way of looking at consensual property relationships in land that recognises both the temporal and spatial dimensions of land. The dynamics approach reflects the fact that most property relationships are lived relationships, affected by changing patterns and understandings of spatial use, relationship needs, economic realities, opportunities, technical innovations, and so on. Although evolving responsively to accommodate changing uses and new rights-holders, these relationships are nevertheless sustained and enduring. The dynamics lens acknowledges the diverse range of legal, regulatory, social and commercial norms that shape property relations and explores how far the enduring, yet dynamic, nature of property relations is taken into account by a range of decision-makers.

Further details are available at”

Irish housing law violates tenant’s human rights

On the 23 October 2017, the European Committee of Social Rights handed down its decision in International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) v. Ireland Complaint No. 110/2014. The decision is available here. On the main ground, the Committee found that Irish housing law violates the right of families to adequate housing under Article 16 of the Revised European Social Charter. The declaration is notable in several respects and is significant, both nationally and internationally. This blog post will engage with some of the issues raised by the complaint however it will also offer some insight into the way this complaint came about and how back in 2012, as a recent graduate, I came to be involved in the complaint.

The Revised European Social Charter

The collective complaint system relates to the Revised European Social Charter, which was established in 1961, and revised in 1996, by the Council of Europe to support the (more famous) European Convention of Human Rights (ECHR). Broadly speaking, while the ECHR enshrines civil and political rights, the European Social Charter enumerates social and economic rights. The logic behind the Social Charter can be explained by borrowing a line from Franklin Delano Roosevelt. In 1944, Roosevelt outlined, in relation to the proposed second Bill of Rights which sought to enumerate economic and social rights in the United States, that “individual freedom cannot exist without economic security and independence”. The European Social Charter sets out human rights to education, health, housing, etc. While 43 out of the 47-member States of the Council of Europe are parties to either the Charter or the Revised Charter, it has not been incorporated into domestic law in the way that the ECHR has been. The rights are not directly justiciable, however the considerable jurisprudence of the Social Charter is nonetheless of growing influence in informing the development of European human rights norms.

The collective complaint process

By international standards, the rights enumerated by the European Social Charter are remarkably sophisticated. Much of this can be attributed to the system of enforcement which through a system of national reports by ratifying states and, in particular, a novel collective complaint system, generates a growing corpus of human rights standards. Certain national and international bodies including national tenants/landlord’s associations, international human rights agencies, etc. have locus standi to bring a collective complaint alleging that some aspect of national law violates the human rights of a collection of individuals in that country. Once a complaint is submitted, it must be deemed admissible (a relatively straightforward threshold) and then it proceeds to the European Committee of Social Rights which, after a hearing, makes a decision on the merits of the case. There is no national tenant’s association in the Republic of Ireland, instead this complaint was brought via the FIDH (International Federation for Human Rights). The moving force behind the whole effort was a group of local authority tenants who were concerned at the conditions of local authority housing and the lack of effective legal remedies governing housing condition and repair. The complaint was organised by Community Action Network (CAN) with the support of Ballymun Community Law Centre, and The Centre for Housing Law, Rights and Policy at NUI Galway. The complaint was funded by the Free Legal Aid Clinic and the Irish Human Rights & Equality Commission.

Getting involved in co-operative research projects

My involvement stems from my work with Dr Padraic Kenna at The Centre for Housing Law, Rights and Policy. I had graduated from the LLB programme at NUI Galway in the summer of 2011 and had taken Dr Kenna’s Housing Law, Rights and Policy module in my final year. This module combined cutting edge research led teaching with a real practical edge and really spurred my academic interest in this area of the law. This experience was exceptionally useful in putting together a successful application when a graduate position opened up on a housing law and policy human rights project in 2012. I was responsible for working with colleagues in Dublin and Galway to identify areas of Irish housing law which were potentially in violation of the Charter and to collect and organise materials which would support the development of a collective complaint. The main issues including the poor housing conditions of local authority housing and in particular the tenant’s lack of effective rights in relation to housing condition, repair, security, dispute resolution etc.

The difficulties in making a complaint

Part of the difficulty for tenants in bringing the complaint was the lack of meaningful statistics. The last state survey of local authority housing condition was in 2002. The complaint was only made possible by tenants systematically collecting and cataloguing evidence of poor housing for years. This was a huge effort but was vital to the ultimate success of the complaint on the main ground. The achievement of CAN is even more remarkable given that there is no state support of tenants’ associations in Ireland, unlike most of the countries of the EU where national tenants’ associations play a vital role in developing renting law & policy e.g. Sweden, Italy, etc. At the end, I had helped put together a skeleton draft which focused on a wide range of areas including local authority housing, as well as homeless legislation, and the housing law governing traveller accommodation. This was the end of my involvement at this stage and I then took up a Tenlaw research fellowship at the University of Southampton. However, I became involved once again in 2016, after the complaint had been deemed admissible and the state had responded by making a submission on its merits. Together with Dr Padraic Kenna, I helped draft the response to the State’s arguments.

The decision on the merits

In 2017 the Committee issued a decision finding that Irish housing law violates the right of families to adequate housing under Article 16 of the European Social Charter. While the Committee found a violation on the main ground i.e. inadequate housing conditions, the decision was disappointing in some respects, most notably in relation to the lack of effective legal remedies available to tenants. The difficulties facing local authority tenants are acute. For local authority tenants, their landlord is also the regulator of housing standards. Because the local authority is legally incapable of serving enforcement notices on itself, it is effectively impossible for local authority tenants to seek enforcement of the statutory housing quality standards. This puts local authority tenants at a remarkable disadvantage relative to private tenants who not only can seek enforcement of these standards by the local authority, they also have access to the low cost and relatively quick dispute resolution framework of the residential tenancies board. Because local authority tenants are in theory able to take their landlord to court over poor housing conditions, the Committee were prepared to reject the argument that local authority tenants were denied effective remedies. However, given the high costs involved in pursuing legal action and the general lack of legal aid available to tenants, this reasoning is somewhat unreal and the highly disappointing. Following the decision, the State must submit a report outlining what actions have been taken to address the violations identified in this complaint.


Throughout my time working on the complaint, I had the opportunity to meet with local authority tenants and listen to their views and contributions. This was remarkably insightful, and the contributions of tenants played a major role in directing the arguments made and also supporting those arguments. One of the recurring themes of the meetings I attended, was the sense of how disempowered local authority tenants were made to feel by Irish housing law in various respects. While the collective complaint system is imperfect, it can provide a valuable means for drawing attention to, and forcing recognition, of the real difficulties experienced by many households. The European Social Charter provides an exceptionally useful framework for evaluating national legal standards and seeking to develop best practice. Looking back on my experience working on the project, I feel incredible fortunate to have worked with such an exceptional team of tenants, community organisers, housing professionals and academics. My advice to recent graduates, or those interested in working in this field, is to get involved in these types of co-operative projects wherever possible. While not essential, it can be extremely helpful to have studied modules in the field of housing law, renting law, human rights etc. Exploring the modules options available and making contact with academics involved in those modules can be exceptionally helpful in identifying research opportunities which are off the beaten track.

The author: Mark Jordan is a lecturer in Land Law at the University of Southampton. For more information see here.

Intellectual Property undergraduate students participate in contest

Intellectual property undergraduate students took part in a contest organised by their lecturer, Dr Eleonora Rosati(Associate Professor in IP law) which consisted of analyzing a recent High Court decision on copyright protection for TV formats.

Three LLB finalists received prizes for their efforts: Diane Pham-Minh will have her piece published as a Current Intelligence note on the Journal of Intellectual Property Law & Practice (Oxford University Press, edited by Dr Rosati); Paul Musa had his piece published on specialist copyright blog The 1709 Blog; and Sebastian Vogg had his piece published on the official Southampton Law School Blog.

Student Paul Musa said of this opportunity: “The contest enabled me to improve my analytical and researching skills. I particularly enjoyed examining the practical significance of this case, as it is going to have a huge effect on how the media industry operates”.

Sebastian Vogg, who was published on this blog, said: “As an exchange student, joining the IP writing contest was a very important experience for me because I learned to express myself more precisely and I made a big progress in using and understanding the legal sources of this country. That my article got published gives me a lot of confidence for my next challenges”.

Diane Pham-Minh said I enjoyed analysing this case as I had previously studied the “Green” case, which formed the basis for this decision, when I was on my year abroad in Singapore. It was really exciting to see how the law has evolved, to actually write about it and later be published in the Journal of Intellectual Property Law & Practice.”


Law students visit Allen & Overy IP Law conference

On 24 November 2017, in her capacity as Editor of the Journal of Intellectual Property Law & Practice (Oxford University Press) and together with the German Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property (GRUR), Dr Eleonora Rosati (Associate Professor in IP Law) organized a conference held at the London offices of Allen&Overy to discuss the most recent developments in EU and UK trade mark law and practice.

The event consisted of two panel discussions featuring leading experts in this area of the law, and included a keynote address by Sir Richard Arnold (High Court of Justice – Chancery Division).

Several Southampton students – both current and past – attended (in the picture together with Eleonora), and had the possibility to discuss relevant issues with the over 300 practitioners, academics and students active in trade mark law who were also present at the conference

The features required for a TV format to be protected by copyright

Sebastian Vogg

What is it required for a TV format to be protected by copyright under UK law? The High Court of England and Wales answered this question in its recent decision in Banner Universal Motion Pictures Limited v Endemol Shine Group Limited, Friday TV AB and NBC Universal Global Networks UK Limited [2017] EWHC 2600 (Ch) (19 October 2017).

Southampton Law School visiting student Sebastian Vogg explains it all.

Here’s what Sebastian writes:

“In its decision of 19 October 2017, the High Court of England and Wales dismissed the claim of Banner Universal Motion Pictures Limited (‘BUMP’) for subsistence and infringement of copyright of the television game show format ‘Minute Winner’ because it was lacking the features required to be qualified as a dramatic work within the meaning of sections 1(1)(a) and 3(1) of the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 (‘CDPA’).


Mr Banner, the founder of the claiming company BUMP, devised a television game show format called Minute Winner. The information concerning this format was written down in a document (‘the Minute Winner Document’) and allegedly disclosed to the defendants by Mr Banner in circumstances that gave rise to an obligation of confidence.

According to BUMP, the defendants misused this information by broadcasting a game show called ‘Minute to Win It’ eight years later without Mr. Banner’s consent. BUMP claimed that this show was derived in substantial part from the Minute Winner format. The plaintiff argued that the Minute Winner Document was protected by copyright as a dramatic work and that the defendant’s unauthorized use amounted to copyright infringement. The format was not alleged to be a literary work, because dramatic and literary works are mutually exclusive categories. Hence, it is not possible to claim that a work falls within the scope of both categories. BUMP also claimed for breach of confidence and passing off. It should be mentioned that Mr. Banner had already tried similar claims before the Swedish courts and could not succeed.


The Court had to decide upon the defendant’s appeal for summary determination of the claim and/or for it to be struck out, among others, because the contents of the Minute Winner Document did not qualify for protection as a copyright work. In terms of the summary determination, according to Part 24 (2) Civil Court Rules, the Court had to answer the question if there was a real prospect of succeeding. To do so, the Court had to assert if there was a real prospect of qualifying the format contained in the Minute Winner Document as a dramatic work.

The Court first determined what a dramatic work is. The CDPA provides no definition of dramatic work but in Norowzian v Arks Limited (No 2) [2000] EMLR 67 (at 73) it was held that a dramatic work is ‘a work of action (…) which is capable of being performed before an audience’. It should be borne in mind that no episode of the Minute Winner had ever been produced. Therefore, the question was if a television format is separately capable of being performed. The Court considered, among others, the decision of the Privy Council of New Zealand in Green v Broadcasting Corporation of New Zealand [1989] RPC 700 (‘Green’) as leading authority. In this decision, the format of a talent television show was not qualified as a dramatic work because it was lacking sufficient certainty of subject matter and unity to be capable of being performed (Green, at 40).

In the present case, the Court held that the relevant authorities indicate that qualifying a television format as dramatic work is, principally, at least arguable. The fact that there are spontaneous elements and changing events in every show, derived from the format, was not necessarily seen as a barrier to copyright protection.

In consideration of former authorities, the Court listed two minimum requirements for copyright protection. Firstly, the format must contain a number of clearly identified features which, taken together, distinguish the show from others of a similar type. Secondly, those distinguishing features must be connected with each other in a coherent framework which can be repeatedly applied so as to enable the show to be reproduced in recognisable form. So, if a show was produced by using the Minute Winner format, it must have been possible to distinguish the outcome from any other game show. As well, it must have been possible to recognise all episodes derived from this format as belonging to one concept.

The features of the format in the present case were basically: the title Minute Winner, the catchphrase ‘one minute to win (something)’, and the idea to give people the chance to win prizes by fulfilling tasks within one minute. Four examples of possible tasks and prizes were listed in the Minute Winner Document. The Court qualified these features as not capable of making a show distinguishable because they were part of the basic concept of almost every television game show. Furthermore, it was held that there was a lack of determining where the show should take place, how the contestants should be chosen, what type of one-minute tasks should be played, how long the show should take, and what kind of prizes should be winnable. Due to the lack of such elements, the Court couldn’t see any recognisable or repeatable structure of the format. According to the Court, the four examples of the document were too inconsistent to derive any structure of the show from them.

Therefore, the format had no realistic chance to be qualified as a dramatic work. For the case that this conclusion was wrong, the Court also held that the Minute Winner format and the show broadcasted by the defendants were different in almost all aspects and that there would have been no infringement anyway. The claims for breach of confidence and for passing off were also dismissed. The former mainly for reasons of jurisdiction rules, the latter due to BUMP’s missing goodwill.

Implications of the decision

In Green (at 25-45) there was some scepticism that a television show format could be qualified as a dramatic work. Anyway, it did not say that it was generally impossible. The possibility to qualify a format as a dramatic work was indicated in Meakin v BBC [2010] EWHC 2065 (Ch) (para 31) where it was assumed that copyright subsisted in specific television show formats. In the present case, the Court explicitly held that it can be possible for such a format to be protected by copyright as a dramatic work.

The arguments why the Minute Winner Document was not a dramatic work demonstrate which requirements could increase the chance of a format to be qualified as copyright protected. It seems hard for a Court to deny the copyright protection of such a format in a future case if it fulfils the requirements that were missed in the Minute Winner format. According to the present decision, criteria to take the threshold of the minimum requirements for copyright protection are: giving exact information about the possible contestants, the winnable prizes, the duration of the show, the kind of games, and where these games take place.

Like in Green (at 40) the Court explained its reluctance to qualify the format as a dramatic work with the argument that copyright creates a monopoly. This demonstrates again that the features of a format should be described as precisely as possible. The more exact these features are described, the less a monopoly would affect the rest of the world and the less it could be an argument against granting copyright protection. The Court held that BUMP could not claim a monopoly on games being played against the clock for one minute. In contrast, there could hardly be seen any problem if people were, for example, just kept from playing certain games, in certain places, to win certain prizes in a television show.

The Court pointed out, that there would have been no infringement anyway, because the format and the show broadcasted by the defendants were different in almost all aspects. One could say that this statement is kind of paradox because the Court first qualified the features of the format as not distinguishable and then used these features to make a precise distinction between the format and the defendant’s show. Of course, this conclusion was just made for the case that the Court was wrong in not qualifying the format as a dramatic work. But the mere possibility of reaching this conclusion implies that the features are distinguishable. A similar problem was, in terms of Green, already mentioned in David Rose, ‘Format rights: a never-ending drama (or not)’ (1999) 10(6) Ent. L.R. 170 (page 171).

The present decision brings no radical change in the assessment of television formats in terms of copyright law. But it probably provides a useful guideline how to draft a format that is likely to be qualified as being protected. The Court also emphasized that the relevant assessment is heavily fact-specific. Thus, if someone devises a format by following this guideline and lodges a similar claim in the future, there could be a different outcome than in the present case.”

The VCAST decision: how to turn a private copying case into a case about communication/making available to the public

A few months after Advocate General (AG) Szpunar released his Opinion in VCAST, C-265/16 [here], the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) has now released its decision in this case.

This was a reference from Italy (Turin Court of First Instance) that one would have thought [as the questions were indeed about it!] to concern the understanding and application of the private copying exception within Article 5(2)(b) of the InfoSoc Directive to cloud-based video-recording services.

Well, although the AG Opinion is indeed about this, the CJEU judgment is not.

The Court, in fact, made the case about the right of communication/making available to the public within Article 3 of the InfoSoc Directive.

Let’s start then and see why VCAST is not really – or at least is no longer – a case about the private copying exception.


The facts of the case are rather simple: basically, the Italian litigation revolves around the lawfulness of a cloud-based recording service, provided by VCAST, that allows its customers to make copies of terrestrial TV programmes broadcasts including, among other things, those of RTI.

Importantly, the possibility to make such recording is granted irrespective of whether customers can lawfully access the programmes terrestrially, ie offline. A clear instance is, as well explained by the AG in his Opinion, that for RTI programmes it is generally required that the user happens to be on the Italian territory.

Under Italian law it would appear that VCAST activity might be lawful, although the CJEU did not consider this a given. Nonetheless, the Court deemed it helpful to base its analysis on the assumption that Italian private copying exception applies to VCAST’s activities.

The question became therefore whether a national law of this kind is compliant with what Article 5(2)(b) of the InfoSoc Directive (read in combination with the three-step test in Article 5(5) therein) provides.

Private copying … but is VCAST’s service only about the making of copies?

After recalling that exceptions should be interpreted strictly, the Court confirmed the finding of the AG – which follows from the seminal Padawan decision – that for the private copying exception to apply it is not required that the beneficiary is the one who directly makes the copy of the copyright work at issue.

However – and this is the interesting part of the Court’s analysis – VCAST’s activity is not about reproductions or, at least, is not just about reproductions. Hence, the discussion around the private copying exception is not the whole story.

More fundamentally, in fact, VCAST does not only organize the recording of TV programmes for its customers but, instead, makes them available to them in the first place. It follows that VCAST’s activity cannot be assessed exclusively under the binary distinction reproduction/private copying. It is also necessary to take into account the making available part and, with it, Article 3 of the InfoSoc Directive.

What does all this lead to?

“[A]lthough the private copy exception means that the rightholder must abstain from exercising his exclusive right to authorise or prohibit private copies made by natural persons under the conditions provided for in Article 5(2)(b) of Directive 2001/29, the requirement for a strict interpretation of that exception implies that that rightholder is not deprived of his right to prohibit or authorise access to the works or the subject matter of which those same natural persons wish to make private copies.

It follows from Article 3 of Directive 2001/29 that any communication to the public, including the making available of a protected work or subject matter, requires the rightholder’s consent, given that, as is apparent from recital 23 of that directive, the right of communication of works to the public should be understood in a broad sense covering any transmission or retransmission of a work to the public by wire or wireless means, including broadcasting.” [39-40]

So, again, communication/making available to the public

The Court thus moved on to recall the requirements for an act of communication (or, rather, making available in this case) to the public [the judgment refers extensively to Reha Training, which – despite being a Grand Chamber ruling – has been quite neglected in decisions like GS MediaFilmspeler and Ziggo].

Interestingly, the CJEU stated that to have an ‘act of communication’ a transmission of a copyright work is required. The Court noted that there would be a transmission made by the broadcasting organisation, on the one hand, and a transmission made by VCAST, on the other hand. Both are done using a different means of transmission for the protected works, and are intended for different publics.

The result?

“without the rightholder’s consent, the making of copies of works by means of a service such as that at issue in the main proceedings could undermine the rights of that rightholder.

Accordingly, such a remote recording service cannot fall within the scope of Article 5(2)(b) of Directive 2001/29.” [51-52]

This means that VCAST’s service cannot be provided without the prior authorization of the relevant rightholders, in that its activity also amounts to communication/making available to the public within Article 3 of the InfoSoc Directive.


The outcome of the VCAST case is not surprising, nor is the fact that the CJEU answered the questions referred by the national judge rephrasing them and considering issues other than those raised.

More generally, the decision highlights once again the absolute centrality of the right of communication/making available to the public, especially in the online environment.

While cloud-based video recording services per se are not to be regarded as unlawful, certainly the CJEU decision sets precise boundaries for designing a service that would be compatible with EU law.

The first condition, stressed in particular by the AG, is that users of a cloud-based recording service must have lawful access to the terrestrial programmes that they wish to record in the first place.

The second condition is that the provider of a video-recording service cannot elude the authorization of the relevant rightholders when what it wishes to provide is a service that allows the recording of content by making it available for recording in the first place. But is this a probatio diabolica? Possibly. If so, then cloud-based video recording services would likely need to be licensed to operate under EU copyright law without the risk of infringing third-party rights.

[Originally published on The IPKat on 29 November 2017]

The author: Dr Eleonora Rosati is an Associate Professor in Intellectual Property Law. Find out more here.

Florence court prohibits unauthorized commercial use of David’s image

Earlier this week the Florence Court of First Instance (Tribunale di Firenze) issued an important and interesting decision [not yet available], which has been widely reported by newspapers in Italy [eg herehereherehere] and abroad [eg here].

The Avvocatura dello Stato, this being the body responsible for advising and representing the Italian state (including in legal proceedings), sued a company, Visit Today, before the Florence Court of First Instance, seeking to obtain a decision that would prohibit this from selling unofficial tickets for the Galleria dell’Accademia in Florence, also using brochures and materials depicting what is probably the most famous guest of this beautiful museum: Michelangelo’s David.

The Florence court sided with Avvocatura dello Stato, and prohibited Visit Today from using the David’s image for commercial purposes.

On what grounds?

I have received several messages asking what the possible grounds for a decision of this kind would be, since copyright protection in this artwork has clearly lapsed … well, at least economic rights.

It is in fact worth recalling that in Italy moral rights protection is perpetual and also the State [or rather, the Head of Italian Government: see Article 23 of the Copyright Actcan enforce an author’s own moral rights. Similarly to other droit d’auteur jurisdictions, Italian courts have interpreted moral rights provisions generously, with the result that the scope of the right of integrity is rather broad.

This said, the main ground for the decision appears to have been [as I mentioned, the decision has not been published yet] the Italian Cultural Heritage Code, also known as Codice Urbani [see here for a recent discussion of Italian freedom of panorama and its relationship with the Code; see also here for an analysis of the decision].

Article 106 of the Code sets the general principle that for cultural heritage items subject to their own control, the State, the various Italian regions and local public bodies may allow individual applicants to use such items for purposes compatible with their own cultural value.

This means that for-profit uses of cultural heritage under the responsibility of Italian public administration are not generally free: instead, they are subject to preventive authorization.

Articles 107 and 108 of the Code provide that the competent public administration may allow third-party uses of an item – including an artwork – belonging to Italian cultural heritage, subject to the payment of royalties to be determined on the basis of – among other things – the type of use requested and the possible economic gain that the user would obtain from the use of the item.

This said, authorization is not required in each and every case. Article 108(3-bis) clarifies in fact that non-profit uses of cultural heritage items for purposes of study, research, freedom of expression or creative expression, and promotion of the knowledge of culturalheritage do not require authorization.

A surprising decision? Not really

The Florence court’s decision, therefore, is not surprising. It is not the first time, in fact, that improper and unauthorized commercial use of Italian cultural heritage has been at the centre of litigation or … threats of litigation. With specific regard to Michelangelo’s David, readers will for instance remember the rather recent case of the ‘armed David’ [here].

Similarly, lawyers who advise clients in the advertising business regularly remind them that the Cultural Heritage Code may prevent them from using works that, otherwise, would be in the public domain from a copyright standpoint.

What is at stake

When visiting Italian cities like Florence, Rome, and Venice it is very frequent to see long queues outside museums and monuments. Invariably frequent is also the sight of vendors (known as ‘bagarini‘) offering tickets – at prices higher than the official ones – to people standing in the queue, alleging great bargains and promising to let them skip the queue (admittedly a rather attractive perspective when you are queuing under the sun and facing a temperature of 38°C).

However, visitors are also often victims of scams.

The reason why the Avvocatura dello Stato brought the present proceedings was indeed also to set a ‘precedent’ and reduce, and possibly eliminate, the problem of bagarini.

Commenting on the Florence decision, Italian Minister of Culture stated that the decision is a good step in the direction of repressing the unauthorized sale – including over the internet – of tickets for Italian cultural heritage sites and the improper use of cultural heritage items. Headded that this decision “is an important step forward for the protection of consumers and the protection of masterpieces held in Italian museums.” The Cultural Heritage Ministry – he added – will continue to monitor improper uses and take action in all cases that infringe relevant provisions in the Cultural Heritage Code.

Although the decision is of course limited to the defendant’s activities, according to the director of Galleria dell’Accademia, Cecilie Hollberg, the outcome will serve as a model for all the museums that face the problem of unofficial ticket vendors who sell tickets at a higher price, thus scamming wannabe visitors.

[Originally published on The IPKat on 25 November 2017]

The author: Dr Eleonora Rosati is an Associate Professor in Intellectual Property Law. Find out more here.

Welcome to the Southampton Law School Blog

Dear readers,

I would like to give you a warm welcome to our new Law School Blog, written by Southampton Law School academics and students. It is intended as a place where the latest news can be shared and ideas exchanged with anyone interested in legal developments and the work undertaken at Southampton.

The blog will serve as a forum of more informal discussions for the high-quality work of our staff and students: feel free to comment, get in touch, and be part of our vibrant community!


Professor Brenda Hannigan
Head of School and Professor of Corporate Law
Southampton Law School.