We reported recently on a court ruling that the UK's copyright exception for personal copies made for private use (the ‘format-shifting’ exception) had been invalidly adopted. This followed a challenge by musicians on the basis that they should receive compensatory revenue through the introduction of a levy scheme or something similar.
Now the judge has quashed the exception bringing an abrupt end to its short life.
There was a suggestion that the question might be referred to the European courts, effectively kicking it into the long grass for a while. But instead, the exception just falls away.
The UK government can now either bring in a new exception, this time supported by more bullet-proof evidence on the impact that it might have on copyright owners.
Or it can leave things as they were before the introduction of the exception last October, with many people believing that what they are doing with their digital content is legal when in fact it is not.