Database protection, case C-46/02

February 7th, 2011, Tomasz Rychlicki

The Court of Justice of the EU in its judgment of 9 November 2004 Case C-46/02 Fixtures Marketing Ltd v Oy Veikkaus Ab, held that the expression “investment in … the obtaining … of the contents” of a database in Article 7(1) of Directive 96/9/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 March 1996 on the legal protection of databases must be understood to refer to the resources used to seek out existing independent materials and collect them in the database. It does not cover the resources used for the creation of materials which make up the contents of a database. In the context of drawing up a fixture list for the purpose of organizing football league fixtures, therefore, it does not cover the resources used to establish the dates, times and the team pairings for the various matches in the league.