Tokio High Court, Shogakan case, reversing Tokyo District Court

Document type
Court Decision
(1) With respect to a copyright infringement case involving Channel 2 where a user uploaded a small part of a copyrighted work onto the bulletin board, the Tokyo District Court held that Channel 2 only had a duty to remove works suspected of copyright infringement if it transmitted the infringing content or otherwise it was “obvious” the content infringed a third party’s copyright. The Tokyo District Court stated that Channel 2 was only an intermediary for transmitting third party information and that the sender of the email that contained the copyrighted work was the party that committed the unlawful act.  
(2) However, the appellant court (Tokyo High Court) reversed the Tokyo District Court decision and ruled that it was obvious that the uploaded contents are simply a copy of copyrighted work, and therefore Channel 2 had a duty to remove the works.
Topic, claim, or defense
Document type
Court Decision
Issuing entity
Appellate Domestic Court
Type of service provider
Host (Including Social Networks)
Issues addressed
Trigger for OSP obligations
OSP obligation considered
Block or Remove
Type of law
General intermediary liability model
Takedown/Act Upon Knowledge (Includes Notice and Takedown)