Music Access Going Offline

Music Access in time past was always a concern for the nostalgic music enthusiast, especially the desire to hold on to music treasures from one’s growing up years. There was the concerned about scratching and breaking and not being able to find another issue.  The digital innovation has liberated the music industry allowing for creative…

Broadcasting Competition of Distribution Agreements

Broadcasting competition of distribution agreements has been in the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) cross-hairs.  While under less than unusual circumstances a provider can enter into a contract to distribute its product exclusively or non-exclusively, the same cannot be said regarding agreements of communications content provider.  The concerns is with content that could draw an overwhelming…

Music Appropriation Issue

The issue of music appropriation of culture e in music is controversially discussed raising concerns for the use of culture as backdrops.  The argument goes that as an artist unveils the video of music scenes appear of a particular culture and people of that particular region.  The criticism is with the prop effects of the…

Trademark Infringement and Sibling Rivalries

Trademark infringements may be common in the business world, but they are as well not unheard of among family members in business who are competing in the same products.  The Southern District Court in Ohio heard a case between siblings which touched on pivotal points regarding trademarks. The court wrestled with the issue of ‘use’…

Cyber Security Events and Lessons of 2015

The process of cyber security is an everyday occurrence in every entity, from government to small and large enterprises.  A handful of events took place in 2015, each shedding a lesson or two going forward.  Counseling clients on requirements always involves sharing best practices, despite them not being a guarantee.  But always the focus is…

Child Privacy and the Apps They Play

Child privacy while playing with apps is something to consider.  The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has been concerned.  The aspect of how information, that is children’s personal information, is shared with advertisers and the related networks brings to mind the requirements of the Children Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). In 2013, the FTC amended the…

Copyright Challenge – Ideas and Expression

Copyright for many individuals appears to be anything they write, express, or present on paper.  By putting content on a book one assumes it’s copyrightable, whether it is text, photos, or drawings.  For a yoga studio in California this was the mindset.  That which they organized together in the form of photos displaying poses was…

How Private is our Privacy

Privacy may not be as private as we would consider, and not much more than what we are capable of to keep private, as long as we live a cyber life.  Take for instance, the wearables that caught the craze throughout 2015 and became a popular item to buy at Christmas and other items that…

Cybercrime Considerations for Cases

There are cybercrime considerations for cases as well as there is a judicial learning curve when it comes to cybercrime and judges  are not alone.  Cybercrime harm cannot be assessed with the mindset of assessing punishment as if it was a physical criminal act without assessing the extenuating consequences of a cyber-criminal act.  In cases…

Cloud Technology Use for a ‘God View’

Uber’s cloud technology use for a ‘God view’ was exciting to experience among its employees.  With every innovative creation there is always the bit of excitement and a bit of dreaming of the capability devoid of cognition for security and for its ramifications.  To insert concepts of security and considerations of ramifications is a downer,…

Cybersecurity Breach Aftermath with FTC

Cybersecurity and cybersecurity breach are difficult topics to discuss with clients because of the unknown variants and for their simple trepidation toward addressing the vulnerabilities and investing the capital for prevention and training.  From internal planning involving establishing a process to addressing external intrusion possibilities they tend to be cumbersome for a company’s administration to…

Digital Copyright Disputes and First Sale Defense

Digital copyright disputes throw around terms such as “sale”, “license”, “first sale”, and “right ownership.”  The distinction of these terms began in 1908 by the Supreme Court determining that a “sale” serves as a defense as opposed to a “license” under a copyright claim.[1]  In a cited case, Bobbs-Merrill, the defendant purchased copies of a…

Free Speech in Trademarks

Free speech in trademarks has been a long existing principle only to be recently circumscribed.  Ideas in naming something personal, such as exercising an expression for a trademark, could otherwise be prohibited if it were not for the constitutional principle of free speech. Imagine starting a company and devising a slogan to register as a…

Digital Economy Fighting Copyright Piracy

Digital economy partnerships drawing close to fight copyright piracy have struck a chord that could have a significant impact to prevent Internet digital media piracy.  The piracy of digital media is an international cottage industry costing billions.  From content creators, ISPs, advertising agencies, network systems, and search engines, to data managers, and e-payment platforms, have…

Advertising Guidelines from FTC

Advertising guidelines from the Federal Trade Commission underscore the deceptive features of ‘native’ advertising.  Prior to Christmas the FTC released its “Enforcement Policy Statement on Deceptively Formatted Advertisements.”  The attention was towards the use of native advertising which is ‘dressed’ or ‘tailored’ to appear as if it is an actual editorial.  The FTC notes the…

Cybersecurity, Internet of things in the Last Quarter

Cybersecurity and internet of things did capture Capitol Hill in this last quarter of 2015, pardon the football metaphor, and needless to say net-neutrality as well.  With physical objects being interconnected and collecting user data and sharing data as well, regulators and privacy groups saw the improved efficiency accompanied with the torment of loss privacy…

Online Music Video Publishing

Online music video publishing give many singers and performers an avenue for promoting their work.  The birth of a new music star is dreamed every time someone seeks publishing with intermediary providers such as YouTube.  The principals of content publication still holds true even with the utilization of third-party audience aggregators like YouTube.  The terms…

Cloud Service Use and Having an Exit Strategy

Cloud service uses, methods and liability considerations are all involved in an appropriately devised exit strategy for any enterprise.  This could be in the form of a backup method for redundancy in service delivery or data management.  For many businesses, the cloud use transitioning process is key for being able to maintain reliable services.  Minimizing…

Identity Theft Event Responses

Identity theft laws in states may vary by state but a notice requirement is common among them.  The frequency and extent of data breaches is staggering with the Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC) recording over 700 breaches so far recorded in 2015 affecting roughly 200 million records.  The previous year, the ITRC recorded for 2014…

Anti-Slapp in Florida

Anti-Slapp in Florida was put to the test in Roca Labs, Inc. v. Consumer Opinion Corp.(Pissed Consumer). In its original lawsuit, Roca Labs argued that the defendant’s consumer review website was fostering defamation, effectively causing tortuous interference, committing unfair competition.  The defense argued immunity under Section 230 of the Communication Decency Act, formally known as…

Crowdfunding and New Conditions

Crowdfunding, an Internet based means of raising capital is getting a lot of attention.  The attention it has garnered is not only from businesses resorting to it but from the SEC as well.  Crowdfunding is instrumental for startups and small business, but it has originally been a vehicle for fund raising for worthy and charitable…

Cybersecurity Buzz in Washington

Cybersecurity is at issue and a buzz in Washington with a bit of urgency and cluelessness.  From addressing anti-hacking methods to cyber security threat sharing, Congress, federal agencies, and the White House are trying to flatten their learning curve.  Private companies have been drawn in to give their two-bits and compare notes on cyber security…

Internet Product Listing Infringing on Trademark

Internet product listing was argued to be infringing on the trademark of a watch manufacturer.  The watch manufacturer argued that it did not sell its watches to Amazon for resale nor did it authorize resale through the online retailer. The plaintiff in this case, Multi Time Machine (MTM), argued that the online retailer, Amazon was…

Internet Freedom of Speech at Risk

Internet freedom of speech is not given the attention it merits while the EU ponders on its EU Data Protection Regulation.  Many rightfully fear that censorship is looming near and is nearer than one imagines.  While the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has lingered since the 1990s, many countries have followed the EU aspiration of…

Internet Technology and Encryption

Internet technology and encryption is placed at the forefront of the debate about how to process, store, secure, report, you get the picture, of communication that are otherwise deemed private.  The discussion embraces the ideas of using back-door means for law enforcement to peruse and search for possible suspects of the terror and their plots…

Trade Secrets Act Update

Trade secret law and practice is about to change if Congress pursues the “Defend” Trade Secrets Act with the current provisions.  Not only will the practice change, rights as well as competition, may be affected for the worse.  The attention that this legislative activity is getting regarding trade secrets is scant to say the most.  …

Consumer Harm in Data Breach Cases

Consumer harm in data breach cases is a critical element to be proven.  Many cases are dismissed when standing is not established.   Commonly, the claims raised assert that some sort of reasonable and appropriate security measures to protect personal identifiable information in a company’s networks was not implemented. Any failure to do such is arguably…

IP address and You

An IP address and you are central to how the Internet functions.  The IP address reveals information about you, your trends, location, and a whole lot more.  By use of an email, say sending an email, the recipient can learn your location.  Through the IP address your internet service provider can be learned as well.…

Cloud Access Security Broker

As service providers and developers seek to encourage cloud service adoption, the role of a cloud access security broker, i.e., CASB, is seen as central to the effort.  The efforts to arrive at standard practices for cloud data security processes, are essential operational benefits of employing a CASB.  The role of a CASB is enhanced…

Cross Device Tracking

The Federal Trade Commission has noted that cross device tracking which is a consequence of the Internet of Things (IoT) falls essentially within its auspices.  Considering the concerns with transparency and the required notices to consumers, cross device tracking is just not getting attention for purposes of enhancing consumer protection.  The advertising industry representatives as…

Fate of the Internet

Life has changed with the Internet but it will change even more as the fate of the Internet is in court hands once again. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit will determine how Internet providers will change how we use the internet, what content will be permitted, and how we access and…

Copyright Basis

Copyright basis draws the question of whether copyright law is based on government granting a monopoly, if you will, vis-à-vis against any other potential entrepreneur.  Many see it that way and tend to deny copyrights having a proprietary property right for the creator of the work.  Historically the value of crafting an idea composed was…

Linking Defamatory Content Online

A case from Washington state dealt with online defamation from linking defamatory content online.  The court wrestled with the issues of proving defamation online.  The court articulated that the First Amendment freedom speech is to be protected and the courts hold to that as well when it comes to online speech and linking defamatory content.  In the era of…

Copyright and Derivative Work

In the realm of intellectual property, copyright and derivative work gets attention when the issue of collaborative rights arises. Copyright and derivative work controversies happen when the joint contributing plans do not materialize as intended between, for example software developers, researchers, writers, or production designers. The scenario is similar to one dealt with by the…

Standing in Data Breach Cases

After years of hesitation to find standing in data breach cases, federal courts are now viewing factors to base standing.  When the matter has been the disclosure of personally identifiable information (PII), the courts have not found standing in data breach cases because they required evidence of actual usage of that PII.  The actual suffering…

Personal Identifiable Information under VPPA

Digital media law and the digital media industry wrestles with how courts define personal identifiable information under the Video Privacy Protection Act.  This definition is important to companies that stream deliver videos to customers. How broadly the court define the scope of liability will remain a concern with personal identifiable information under the VPPA. In…

Personal Data Privacy in Wearable Tech

The industry is concerned with personal data privacy in wearable tech you buy and use. The personal data privacy in wearable tech that is collected has gotten the attention of the consumer electronic industry and have promulgated some guidelines.  They has set a voluntary standard of principles to follow. The CEA, Consumer Electronics Association has…

Website Defamation Immunity

Website operators, either as defendants or plaintiffs have resorted to Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (CDA) to determine website defamation immunity and defamation liability.  Under the Section 230, blogs or forums, for instance, benefit from website immunity from tort liability if the information was from a third-party.  That third-party could be a subscriber,…

CISA

CISA The U.S. Senate passed the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act (“CISA,” S. 754). In passing it had to consider a variety of issues before it regarding the amendments to CISA.  The proposed amendments of CISA have one goal in common, to enhance privacy and strengthen the privacy. One of the issues was to clarify the…

Developing Apps

Developing Apps Developing apps could be thrilling and troubling.  Of course, it is the thrilling aspect or expectation that drives the creative ideas.  But what is not thought of is the necessary planning that is crucial for it to be successful.  Simple creation is not enough.  Long before that, just the thought of an idea…

Net Neutrality European Points

Net Neutrality European Points Net neutrality European points are going before the EU Parliament soon where several proposals will be weighed.  The concept of an open internet without restrictions on traffic, how the networks manage traffic and how traffic is categorized is being considered in the EU Parliament.  There is a draft regulation proposed expressing…

Security of Internet of Things

The security of internet of things is unknowingly pervading our everyday life.  Items that can be remotely accessed for information, turned on to operate, adjust their operation settings, and process into a network are all fraught with vulnerabilities.  Security of internet of things is just becoming news worthy to some and ignored by great majority.…

International Service of Lawsuits Via Email

International service of lawsuits via email is an option when the physical address of an international defendant is unknown.  According to the Hague Convention on the Service Abroad (Hague Convention), when the physical address is unknown the Hague Convention does not apply.  In practice, as long as the email address does not return an undeliverable…

Internet is Changing Business Models

Internet is changing business models on daily business operational practices from brick-n-mortar constructs to digital information transfers, from a letter or phone call to a “textmail” or “e-mail.” The process has brought a down scaling in what used to be large administrative organizations to efficient self-employed entrepreneurs. The latter is the future and it is…

Electronic Self-Publishing Considerations

Electronic self-publishing considerations are overlooked by many who venture on to electronic self-publishing.  The efforts to do so could be for self-publication or out of an egalitarian purpose of making materials easily available. The issues for self-publishing for those seeking to venture are immaterial to the purpose  Initial costs of publishing can be limited which is…

eCommerce and the FTC

eCommerce and the FTC For businesses seeking to engage commercially in the realm of cyber space ‘eCommerce’, their eCommerce efforts will be under the eyes of the FTC – Federal Trade Commission. While it was established in the early 1900s, the FTC has been focused on protecting consumers and enforcing their rights. There has been…

Electronic Stored Information Business and Email Records

Electronic Stored Information Business and Email Records are a fundamental element in today’s business environment along with email records.  Today the great majority of business runs on computing information that is stored and shared, transferred, and collaborated on within a network.  Technological network where electronic stored information (ESI) serves as business records and communications by email…

Cloud Service Considerations – Business and Legal Issues

Software service – Data storage – Data Management – Internet Security Cloud service considerations – business and legal issues include many operational facets of a business’s management.   Each may have their own unique risks as well as benefits.  Cloud services are not new.  Remote access to business data has been part of business and…

Business Risk and Trade Secret Misappropriation

Business Risk and Trade Secret Misappropriation Any enterprise large or small will experience business risk and trade secret misappropriation of some form or another. The offense of misappropriating trade secrets according to the Uniform Trade Secret Act (UTSA) is the ‘acquisition of a trade secret of another by a person who knows or has reason…

Trade Secrets and Employee Misappropriation

Employers overwhelmingly experience theft of trade secrets and employee misappropriation of employer intellectual property.  Employees transferring company confidential communications, business information, and items normally considered trade secret to a thumb drive or personal drives and accounts, could face being sued for a sundry of claims, including misappropriating trade secrets (violating the Uniform Trade Secrets Act),…

Copyright Protection of Photos of Architectural Structures

Photographers commonly take photos of buildings and landscapes and of views that encompass structures and then sell them under license and it times do not account for the copyright protection of photos of architectural structures.  Under the Copyright Act, a private place though open to the public for touring is still not considered a public…

Balancing Privacy and Encryption

There is no perfect security when balancing privacy and encryption. However, companies storing and collecting data are obliged to focus on higher protection levels. End user controls are receiving greater attention as events increase in frequency. The unfortunate aspect is the prevalence of naiveté about security among users of smartphones, laptops, tablets, and cloud applications.…

Social Media Information Used in Litigation

Social media use and its information is telling of someone and it is increasingly sought after in court cases where we see social media information used in litigation. Many times social media accounts are a well-spring of vital information that can tip a case on its head. The information can reveal truthfulness or the lack…

Marketability of Hashtags

As hashtags are increasingly filed for registry as trademarks, courts are balancing the nominative use of hashtags and the descriptive use of the marketability of hashtags.  So far over 50 hashtags have been granted federally registered trademark status. The difficulty is that the descriptive use may be heightened by the courts amid the value of…

Review Websites Being Questioned

Review websites being questioned for claiming to be a “passive conduit” of comments about service providers.  The matter of consumer trust in reviews provided by these sites run the risk of being manipulated by subscriber agreements. What stands in the fulcrum is the ability for these sites to bolster the transparency of their policies in…

Copyright Preemption

Issues with copyright preemption from state court to federal court become germane under the Copyright Act.  A recent decision in federal court dealt with the issue where what was being claimed was about ideas expressed in a tangible form in a software program, i.e., Spear Marketing, Inc. v. Bancorp South Bank. The Fifth Circuit determined…

Copyright Filings and the Library of Congress

Copyright law – Intellectual property law There is a unique requirement with copyright filings and the Library of Congress. Seldom does one wonder how the Library of Congress is the world’s largest library with over 140 million materials that include maps, films, sounding recordings, software programs, photographs, and books. The Registry processes nearly half of…

Personal Data Privacy and Consumer Privacy Bill

Personal data privacy and Consumer Privacy Bill may meet to give people more control over their personal information is in the horizon. Concern however remains with companies and data brokers having discretion. The proposed Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights Act, sets some requirements on companies that process personal information. The idea is to establish some…

Data Protection Harm

Data Protection Law – Consumer Protection Law Data protection harm has become key in courts determining standing in data breach cases.  Data protection harm was analyzed in a case involving breaches and hacking of personal information.  The 7th Circuit’s attention was drawn where it reversed a district court ruling holding that where future harm suffices…

Trademark Free Riding

Many brands in a strong competitive industry have the challenge of trademark free riding posed by not necessarily their own competitors.  Company brands struggle against other entities that are not necessarily in their industry, benefiting by their use of a similar if not identical mark from the reputation they have tried to build. This “free-riding”…

Software Development

Software development and implementation is critical to the growth of a company’s innovation program. The source code is software development is a valuable trade secret and is transferable easily through varied mediums.  This is a challenging concern for trade secret – software owners. Challenging issues for intellectual property owners and the pursuit of prosecuting trade…

Internet Privacy – Florida Privacy Protection Act

Internet Privacy Law – Florida Internet Privacy Law The flow of information from internet usage and ‘ Internet of Things’  is easily accompanied with its collection and systemic use for other purposes. Digital profiles are created with every online user’s key stroke, site visited, and key word used. In 2015, the Florida Legislature addressed many…

Right To be Forgotten and Personal Information

The right to be forgotten and the availability of personal information is being debated in the European Union.  Google has been restricted by the EU high Court from having personal information accessible in its search process respecting the right to be forgotten. Yet, while information is not available about people on search vehicles provided by…

Internet Password Security

Internet password security is a growing concern about internet user’s privacy. Services provided address the management of passwords to enhance password security and privacy on the internet.  There are considerations.  Pros – they offer secure storage, sync usernames and passwords, help prevent password reuse with provide password reminders, identify emails used as identifiers, use email confirmation…

Cyber Security and Assessing Cyber Liability – An Internet Law Lawyer’s comment

Cyber security is an aspect of insurance that new and growing and with it there is the need to assess liability and the needs of the business.  Securing insurance coverage for cyber-attack events should address your cyber liability. Considerations should address monitoring, risk assessment to prevent gaps in coverage, lower deductibles with the use of…

Encrypting Websites

Encrypting news websites is being pursued to enhance the privacy of readers. The Washington Post wants readers to feel safe from monitoring eyes. Intelligence agencies are routinely seeking to monitor readership and their internet access. But when social media sites and newspaper sites exert efforts to protect its readership and users, they thwart governmental agencies…

Internet Freedom – Could it be at Risk?

Internet Freedom – Internet Regulation – Internet Law Internet freedom and it regulation is foreseen as the Administration is seeking to not renew the contract with ICANN.  to shifting as Few know that the U.S. Department of Commerce’s (USDC) contract with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) ends September 2015. ICANN would…

Facial Recognition and Social Media

The use of facial recognition by social media platforms is drawing concern from European regulators.   The ramifications impinging on privacy by the social media networks’ use of facial recognition technology are foreseen as limitless.  For instance, facial recognition technology can identify Facebook friends to whom users can then forward the photos.  Canadian authorities share…

Copyright Differing from Digital Content

Intellectual Property Law – Copyright Law UK Court’s recent ruling prohibits copying, transferring, backing up, and combining of device usage of lawfully owned digital content. While this may impinge on right holders, it is still permissible to share books, tapes, and CD. Throughout the EU, UK does not stand alone dealing with the dilemma of…

Concerns with Facial Recognition

The EU has concerns with facial recognition used in social media.  The concerns with facial recognition stems from technology being able to identify Facebook friends to whom users can then forward the photos. Canadian and European regulators are not favorable of social network’s use of facial recognition technology. The general concern is that with the…

Internet of Things and Google

Internet of things and Google is the theme underlining Google establishing an internet of things (Iot) central system called Brillo. Google Brillo is designed to run on and connect multiple low-power devices, connecting anything from a washing machine to a rubbish bin and linking in with existing Google technologies. The move is an expansion of the company’s…

Spying On Emails

(Reuters) – Spying on emails has drawn the attention of the courts. A U.S. judge ordered Yahoo Inc to face a nationwide class-action lawsuit accusing it of illegally intercepting the content of emails sent to Yahoo Mail subscribers from non-Yahoo Mail accounts, and using the information to boost advertising revenue. In a decision late Tuesday…

Email Vulnerability

Email vulnerability to hackers has many cyber security experts concerned.  With the White house emails being hacked, along with the former Secretary of State’s in private servers, encrypted email system are too vulnerable to attack by sophisticated hackers who may be working for foreign powers. Obama carries a specially secured BlackBerry device for top-secret communications. It appears…