Yahoo! loses French Nazi goods case

January 13, 2006
Yahoo! corporate headquarters

Yahoo! lost trying to get a U.S. court to intervene over a French ruling regarding the sale of Nazi memorabilia on its Web site.

The Internet giant had argued in the federal appeals court in San Francisco that the ruling in France that prevented the company from selling Nazi goods online violated free speech under U.S. law. The French authorities banned Yahoo! from selling the material both on the local French site as well as the global Yahoo! site.

While the district court dismissed Yahoo!'s case, it did acknowledge the difficulties the argument brought.

"First Amendment issues arising out of international internet use are new, important and difficult," the judges stated following Thursday's ruling. "We should not rush to decide such issues based on an inadequate, incomplete or unclear record. We should proceed carefully, with awareness of the limitations of our judicial competence, in this undeveloped area of the law."

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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