E-Commerce is touching all the aspects of the gambling business. The present case deals with the betting services over the Internet and the database right.
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The case primarily involves the interpretation of Directive 96/9/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of March 11, 1996 regarding the legal protection of databases.
The Directive defines a database as a collection of independent works, data or other materials arranged in a systematic or methodical way and individually accessible by electronic or other means. Chapter III of the Directives regulates the database rights set forth in Articles 7 to 11.
Article 7, in pertinent part, provides that member states shall allocate a property right for the maker of a database which shows that there has been a qualitatively and/or quantitatively substantial investment in either the obtaining, verification or presentation of the contents to prevent extraction and/or re-utilization of the whole or of a substantial part, evaluated qualitatively and/or quantitatively, of the contents of that database.
Article 8 governs the rights and obligations of lawful database users. Article 8 provides inter alia that the maker of a database which is made available to the public in whatever manner may not prevent a lawful user of the database from extracting and/or re-utilizing insubstantial parts of its contents, evaluated qualitatively and/or quantitatively, for any purposes whatsoever.
The database rights granted under this directive are known as sui generis rights. However, sui generis rights are not absolute. Exceptions to a sui generis right may be provided by the Member States as per Article 9.
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Staff Attorneys, IBLS Editorial Board