Host-Provider's Liability for Illegal Blog Entries

In the anonymity of the Internet, many persons love to talk and sometimes it becomes insulting. The BGH in its judgment of October 25, 2011 (re: VI ZR 93/10) has set the rules for the liability of host providers as well as if and when they have to remove blog entries, that infringe personal rights of others, to avoid any liability. LG2G will give the contents of this decision in a nutshell.


In this case, Google was to be held liable as the host provider of a blog because some unnamed person posted that the plaintiff, using the plaintiff's real name in full, uses his credit card to pay his visits to sex cl

The host provider only has to become active when the infringement can be easily affirmed, i.e. without in-depth legal or factual testing. Host providers do not have the duty to monitor each and every incoming post! They only have to react to justified complaints of infringing on somebody's personal rights.

In other words, the comment "You're too stupid..." is to be removed. However when you have to read between the lines to notice an insult, then the tendency will be that you do not have to remove it. "Wishing only sunshine (and may it torch your skin)." "May the wind always come from behind (so that it knocks you off your feet)."

In the case of an assumable violation of good morals, following steps have to be taken:

  1. The person feeling offended informs the provider. This information has to be as precise as possible. It is not reasonably expected of the provider to collect all details.
  2. The provider then has to request a review from the blogger within a reasonable period.
  3. When the blogger does not respond, the provider can assume the legitimacy of the complaint and delete the contested entry.
  4. In the case where the blogger responds and comes up with arguments that do not completely clear up all the doubts, the host provider must communicate this to the insulted person and request further argumentation from them.
  5. When the insulted person does not respond to this "follow up", then nothing further is to be initiated.
  6. When they do respond, start again at 2.


Good luck!

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