In November a French court ruled ordered Yahoo! To block French users’ access to race-hate material on pains of a $13,000 daily fine for non-compliance.
Yahoo said its worldwide ban on Nazi memorabilia was not a direct result of the French ruling, but that the French court case had raised awareness and speeded up the decision.
At the time of the French ruling, legal experts said it was impossible for national law in one state to affect the global internet, and Yahoo itself asked the US courts to overturn the decision on these grounds. Yahoo’s decision today however shows that national courts can materially affect the behaviour of transnational internet companies. The ruling takes effect on 10 January.