THE DIGITAL MILLENNIUM COPYRIGHT ACT

The Online Copyright Infringement Liability Limitation Act or OCILLA, is a part of Digital Millennium Copyright Act. The DMCA 512 or more commonly called The DMCA Takedown Provision, is a US federal law that provides protection for online service providers including Internet service providers ISP’s that take down website content if there are allegations that someone has infringed their copyright. This is a simple procedure that is used when copyright infingers fail to remove the copied content.

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) is a US Copyright law and as such Companies like Google and Yahoo have to adhere to. It covers that they can not knowingly hold, within their search engines / servers digital intellectual property that has been copied from its original source. It also heightens the penalties for copyright infringement on the Internet. Passed on 12th October 1998, by a unanimous vote in the United States Senate and signed into law by President Bill Clinton on 28th October 1998.

European Copyright Derective or EUCD, which addresses some of the same issues as the DMCA. by means of the separate Electronic Commerce Directive (ECD)

UK law on copyright property sent across the internet or kept on web servers is generally protected in a similar manner as material in other media. A person wishing to put copyright material on the internet, distribute or download material, that has been placed on the internet by others, should make sure that the correct permission is given by the owners of the rights within the material, unless exceptions of copyright apply. Naturally, you do not need permission if the owner directly states that copying is allowed, some website owners allow this,.but be sure that when doing this that you are not in breach of some else’s copyright.
The law is different in other countries so, copyright material might have been placed on the Internet in another country that would not be infringing copyright there, but it could be illegal to use (including to download) without permission from within the UK.

These are two links that will provide a more in depth view to the DMCA and the EUCD.
http://www.opsi.gov.uk/si/si2002/20022013.htm
http://www.copyright.gov/legislation/dmca.pdf