Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12259/35039
Type of publication: Magistro darbas / Master thesis
Field of Science: Teisė / Law
Author(s): Žukauskas, Mantas
Title: Ar remiantis Lietuvos įstatymais tinklapių savininkams suteikiamos teisinės priemonės gintis prieš programas, kurios blokuoja internetinę reklamą?
Other Title: Whether Lithuanian law provides website owners with legal means to defend against ad blocking software?
Extent: 42 p.
Date: 2-Jun-2017
Event: Vytauto Didžiojo universitetas. Teisės fakultetas
Keywords: Teisė;Internetinis reklamavimas;Teisinė gynyba;Internet marketing;Law;Legal defense
Abstract: Adblock Plus, uBlock Origin ir panašaus tipo programos skirtos interneto naršyklėms, kad šiuose vartotojas nebematytų reklamų. Šiais laikais jos mėgaujasi milžinišku populiarumu. Jos veikia vieno mygtuko paspaudimu įdiegiant programą į pasirinktą interneto naršyklę, kas užtrunka tik kelias sekundes, todėl yra labai lengvai prieinamos kiekvienam vartotojui. Kompanijų „Media House“ ir „Synopticom Ad Research“ atliktas tyrimas parodė, kad 29% nuo 18 iki 50 metų amžiaus interneto vartotojų Lietuvoje naudoja reklamą blokuojančias programas. Dažniausiai cituojama priežastis, dėl kurios žmonės renkasi blokuoti reklamas yra, jog internetinės reklamos dažnai yra įkyrios ir neigiamai įtakoja jų naršymo patirtį. Daugelis žmonių nenori matyti reklamų, kurios iššoka per visą jų monitorių, ar be vartotojo leidimo pradeda groti garso ar video klipus. Kai kurie tinklapiai net seka vartotojų kompiuterių duomenis, tokiu būdu suteikdami jiems asmeniškai nutaikytas reklamas pasitelkdamos vartotojo naršymo ir ieškojimo istoriją, todėl savaime suprantama, kad daugelis žmonių nori išvengti tokių nepatogumų ir privatumo pažeidimų. Tačiau iš kitos pusės, būtent reklamos tinklapių savininkams suteikia pajamas už tinklapyje patalpintą turinį, kurį vartotojas naršo nemokamai. Tinklapių savininkai dažnai pažymi, jog reklamų pašalinimas tolygus nemokėjimui už turinį, kas kai kuriais atvejais gali būti neteisėta. Daugelis tinklapių šiais laikais yra visiškai priklausomi nuo reklamų atnešamo pelno, todėl suprantama, kad tinklapių savininkai ieško būdų teisiškai ginti savo interesus. Kadangi klausimas visiškai netyrinėtas lietuviškoje mokslinėje literatūroje ir praktikoje, šiame darbe apžvelgiama kaip šiuo klausimu pasisakoma užsienio mokslinėje literatūroje ir praktikoje, bei pritaikant iš užsienio surinktus duomenis analizuojami Lietuvos įstatymai, su tikslu nustatyti ar yra suteikiamos teisinės priemonės tinklapių savininkams gintis prieš reklamas blokuojančių programų naudojimą Lietuvoje. Darbo pabaigoje patvirtinama hipotezė, priėjus prie išvados, jog tinklapių savininkams yra suteikiama galimybė ginti savo interesus dvejais iš trijų nagrinėtų būdų – autorių teisių pažeidimo, bei konkurencijos įstatymo pažeidimo argumentais.
Adblock, uBlock Origin and similar types of applications are installed on internet browsers so that the user would cease to see ads. They have surged in popularity in recent years due to how easy they are to install and use, even to casual internet users. Research companies „Media House“ and „Synopticom Ad Research“ conveyed a survey which showed that 29% of Lithuanians ages 18 to 50 that browse the web regularly use Adblock type programs. The most cited reason by people who choose to use ad blocking programs is that they find most ads to be obtrusive and that they negatively impact their browsing experience. A lot of people want to avoid ads which pop up on their screen, obscuring the website, or ads that automatically play audio or video clips. Some websites even track the user's personal information in order to target ads to specific consumers based on their browsing or search history. It is understandable that most people would like to avoid these inconveniences and breaches of privacy. On the other hand, these ads are often the website's main source of income, paying for the content that the user is browsing for free. Website owners often argue that removing ads is akin to not paying the author for his work or stealing content, which in some cases could be considered illegal. A lot of websites these days are completely dependant on ad revenue to keep their sites going, often not having any other type of revenue stream, so there is no surprise that website owners are looking for ways to defend their own interests in legal proceedings. Since the question has not been touched upon at all in Lithuanian literature or case law, this thesis will review international scientific literature and case law and apply the most commonly used arguments in the context of the Lithuanian legal system and, via the analysis of Lithuanian laws, determine if there are any legal grounds for website owners to defend against the use of ad blocking programs within the Lithuanian legal framework. The potential legal arguments for defense against ad blocking software that are analyzed in the thesis are: 1) Copyright infringement - skipping ads infringes on the website owner's copyright because removing ads interferes with the owner's exclusive right to control how their site is displayed. This should be classified as unauthorized use of copyrighted material. 2) Breach of competition law – a third party, which in this case is either the user or the creator of the ad blocking software, interfering between an ad publisher's and a website owner's contract by either disrupting one party's obligation under the contract or merely making the contract more expensive or burdersome. There is also the case of "white-listing" in which ad blocking software creators take monetary compensation in order to stop their software from blocking ads on certain websites, which forces website owners to pay them in order to stay competitive in the ad market. 3) Click-wrap contract – a website may ask the user to agree to certain terms and conditions before allowing him to see the content of the website. Such conditions may be as simple as „by clicking accept the user agrees not to use ad blocking software and shall be liable for breaking these terms“. The effective usage of this method hinges on the ability to set high breach of contract penalties with the purpose of either dettering users from using ad blocking or to get compensated from such users in court. With regard to the copyright infringement argument the thesis comes to the conclusion that in general, websites are protected by copyright in Lithuania and that the exceptions of using works without the author's consent provided in Article 29 of Lithuanian Law on Copyright and Related Rights (thereinafter the LCL) does not apply in the case of ad blocking software, therefore the website owner is allowed to defend his exclusive rights against the users of such software. Furthermore Article 74 of the LCL states that a website is allowed to use digital protection measures, such as detectors that block ad blocking users from entering the website, bypassing of which is illegal and grounds for criminal charges against both the users and providers of ad blocking software. Therefore there are legal grounds for the copyright defense in the Lithuanian legal system. With regards to the breach of competition law argument, Lithuania governs competition via the Competition Law of Lithuania . The thesis comes to the conclusion that although website owners could not use the argument against the distribution of the program itself, they could certainly use it against paid "white-listing", because it provides a platform for ad blocking software creators to pressure website owners into considering contracts they would not otherwise need to accept. Therefore, there are legal grounds for the breach of competition law defense. Lastly, the thesis comes to the conclusion that click-wrap contracts are generally legally binding via the Civil Code and the Information Society Service Law as long as the user is made fully aware of the terms of the contract before agreeing to it and is allowed to download the contract. However, there are notable exceptions in Part 3 of Article 6.186 and Part 3 of Article 6.258 of the Civil Code that make the specific use of effective click-wrap contracts against ad blocking users unenforcable in practice due to the power imbalance defense and the court's ability to minimize compensation to actual sustained damages, which defeats the purpose of setting a high breach of contract penalty. Therefore there is no legal grounds to defend against ad blocking via use of click-wrap contracts. After applying the aforementioned arguments in Lithuanian legal context, the hypothesis on there being legal grounds to defend against ad blocking in the Lithuanian legal system is proven with the outcome of the research determining that two of the three discussed arguments have legal grounds in the Lithuanian legal system, those being the use of the copyright infringement argument and the breach of competition law argument.
Internet: https://eltalpykla.vdu.lt/1/35039
https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12259/35039
Appears in Collections:2017 m. (TF mag.)

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