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Irish hotel owners should pay royalties for use of copyrighted work on TV and radio – court

THE EUROPEAN Court of Justice has ruled that owners of Irish hotels should pay royalties for the use of copyrighted work on TV or radio by guests in their rooms.

The case was taken against Ireland by Phonographic Performance Ireland which argued that it was against Irish law that such services be provided for free and it also sought damages.

“A hotel operator which broadcasts phonograms in its rooms should pay equitable remuneration to producers.....and member states may not exempt such an operator from the obligation,” the ECJ said.

Initially the company had taken its case to the High Court which referred a number of questions to the ECJ.

The ruling will now be referred back to the commercial division of the High Court for a determination.