Germany’s highest civil court signs off on the business model behind AdBlock Plus The popular adblocking software AdBlock Plus, and the underlying business model of Eyeo GmbH, do not fall foul of German unfair competition rules. On 19 April, the German Federal Supreme Court (BGH) handed down its landmark ruling on the legality of adblocking (BGH, file number I ZR 154/16). Given that AdBlock Plus is highly popular throughout the world, the decision will have repercussions for online advertising and for publishers of online content far beyond the borders of
Eyeo ordered on appeal to whitelist Axel Springer media for free on AdBlock Plus German media house Axel Springer has won a first significant victory in the adblocking battle that has been keeping the digital advertising industry on its toes for over a year now. Read up on the procedural history between German media houses and Eyeo GmbH, the company behind the world’s most popular adblocker AdBlock Plus. Adblocking is steadily on the rise. In a workshop recently organized by the German Federal Commission on the Convergence of Media, the
On 29 September, the District Court of Cologne became the third court in Germany to issue a decision in relation to the trilogy of actions launched by large publishers against adblocking software Adblock Plus. The court rejected publisher Axel Springer’s action against Eyeo GmbH, the German company behind AdBlock Plus. In doing so, the Cologne court agreed with the courts of Hamburg and Munich which in April and May had already rejected parallel actions brought by other large publishing houses, among them RTL, ProSieben Sat.1 Digital and Handelsblatt.
A few weeks ago, we reported on the decision of the Hamburg District Court in the ongoing adblocking litigation concerning the software AdBlock Plus of Eyeo GmbH. Yesterday, the District Court of Munich followed suit, dismissing all claims brought by subsidiaries of RTL und ProSiebenSat.1 Digital. The judges found that the relationship between Eyeo’s business and that of the media houses is not sufficiently close to amount to a competitor relationship under the German Unfair Competition Act. Beyond that, the court held that Eyeo does not willfully interfere with the advertising business of the media
As reported in the press last week, the rise of adblocking appears to be spreading (read our earlier reports here and here). On 14 May, the Financial Times reported that a number of mobile operators are currently developing plans to block advertising on their networks. One unnamed European wireless carrier told the Financial Times that it plans to roll out adblocking by the end of this year. The mobile adblocking technology in question was developed by the Israeli start-up Shine. Roi Carthy, chief marketing officer of Shine, told the Financial Times that
Recently, we reported on the series of adblocking lawsuits pending in Germany against Eyeo GmbH, the makers of AdBlock Plus. Yesterday, the District Court of Hamburg rendered the first decision in this highly controversial and avidly followed battle of several German media houses, among them Axel Springer, ProSiebenSat.1 and RTL subsidiaries. The court ruled in favor of the defendant Eyeo, deciding that its software AdBlock Plus did not constitute unfair competition. The claimants, Zeit Online and Handelsblatt, had asked the court to enjoin Eyeo from offering software that blocks publicly
Adblocking is an increasingly wide-spread phenomenon with huge impact on the online advertising industry. The best known and by far most popular adblocking tool is AdBlock Plus, marketed by the German company Eyeo GmbH. AdBlock Plus is among the most frequently downloaded browser add-ons worldwide, with over 144 million active users reported in 2014 (Source: Page Fair and Adobe 2014 report). AdBlock Plus allows Internet users to decide which advertising content they want to have appear on their screens. The software comes with a pre-selection of blacklisted and whitelisted websites
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