Media Law

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  • Three Data Security Breach Cases Dismissed

    Seller Beware Blog
    Neil Rosenbaum
    17 Apr 2015 | 8:08 am
    In March, three putative class actions stemming from data security breaches were dismissed due to lack of standing or to plaintiffs’ inability to state a valid claim.  In the first, filed against national payroll service Paytime, Inc. in the wake of an unauthorized access to the company's computer networks, the court dismissed the case for lack of standing, finding that plaintiffs had alleged no actual misuse of the personal information that was accessed. See Storm v. Paytime, Inc. In the second, filed in the Western District of Washington against national restaurant chain P.F.
  • Investigative Journalism's New Champions

    Media Law Prof Blog
    Media Law Prof
    24 Apr 2015 | 1:02 pm
    Jeffrey Ruoff examines why more and more documentary filmmakers are turning to investigative journalism as media outlets abandon the form. But, as he points out, the audience for film is different from the audience for print. (For Pacific Standard).
  • Physician Practices Be Alert: You Might Be Violating HIPAA If You Produce Medical Records In Response To State Court Subpoenas

    Digital Media & Data Privacy Law
    Forrest Campbell
    21 Apr 2015 | 8:20 am
    Over the past months, my experiences with physician practices have made me realize that many practices do not understand how HIPAA applies to subpoenas for medical records.  More worrisome, I suspect that many practices nationwide routinely violate HIPAA when they receive a subpoena. Here’s what I’ve observed:  Practices receive state court subpoenas that are signed by lawyers and that demand the production of medical records, and the practices automatically assume they must produce the records.  This is a dangerous assumption—the production of the records may…
  • “Made in the USA” Update: California Law Upheld and FTC Closes Investigations

    Seller Beware Blog
    Neil Rosenbaum
    23 Apr 2015 | 7:57 am
    A California federal court denied a motion to dismiss challenging California’s strict law regulating the use of “Made in the USA” claims on preemption and constitutional grounds.  As we have previously discussed, California’s stringent standard prohibits describing merchandise as “Made in the USA” if “any article, unit or part” has been “entirely or substantially” made outside the US.  This is stricter than the FTC’s guidance under the Federal Trade Commission Act, which permits using “Made in the USA” if the product is “all or virtually all”…
  • Net Vitality Should Be the Cornerstone of U.S. Broadband Policy

    Media & Communications Policy
    Guest Author
    24 Apr 2015 | 10:17 am
    By guest blogger PROF. STUART N. BROTMAN, faculty member at Harvard Law School and author of the study Net Vitality: Identifying the Top-Tier Global Broadband Internet Leaders published by The Media Institute.  Prof. Brotman is a member of the Institute’s Global Internet Freedom Advisory Council.  The full version of this article appeared in The Hill on April 24, 2015. The Federal Communication Commission’s recent Open Internet Order is intended to develop an enforceable regulatory scheme to ensure that net neutrality would be achieved.  One of its rationales is that unless such…
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    Media Law Prof Blog

  • Investigative Journalism's New Champions

    Media Law Prof
    24 Apr 2015 | 1:02 pm
    Jeffrey Ruoff examines why more and more documentary filmmakers are turning to investigative journalism as media outlets abandon the form. But, as he points out, the audience for film is different from the audience for print. (For Pacific Standard).
  • Comcast Pulling Out of Attempt to Buy TimeWarner

    Media Law Prof
    23 Apr 2015 | 1:41 pm
    Comcast is apparently ending its $45 billion try to purchase TimeWarner because of difficulties in overcoming agency skepticism over the impact such a deal would have on consumers. Comcast and TimeWarner are the U.S. largest cable companies and their merger...
  • The IP Legal Regime's Plagiarism Fallacy

    Media Law Prof
    23 Apr 2015 | 11:50 am
    Gregory N. Manel, Temple University School of Law, Anne Fant, University of Washington, Department of Psychology, and Kristina Olson, University of Washington, Department of Psychology, have published Intellectual Property Law's Plagiarism Fallacy. Here is the abstract. Intellectual property law is...
  • April 23 Twitter Event: Bloomberg BNA and NY IPLA To Discuss EU Ruling On "Right To Be Forgotten" and US Law

    Media Law Prof
    23 Apr 2015 | 8:11 am
    From Bloomberg BNA: Bloomberg BNA and the New York Intellectual Property Law Association will hold an April 23 Twitter discussion, “Should the EU's Right to Be Forgotten Ruling Be Extended to the U.S.?” Join a panel of privacy professionals, including...
  • Fitting the 3D Object Into the Cultural and IP Schemes

    Media Law Prof
    23 Apr 2015 | 7:20 am
    Charles Patrick Desmond Cronin, USC Gould School of Law, has published 3D Printing: Cultural Property as Intellectual Property. Here is the abstract. Long before the onset of the now-emblematic quarrel between England and Greece over the Parthenon marbles, nations and...
 
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    Digital Media & Data Privacy Law

  • Physician Practices Be Alert: You Might Be Violating HIPAA If You Produce Medical Records In Response To State Court Subpoenas

    Forrest Campbell
    21 Apr 2015 | 8:20 am
    Over the past months, my experiences with physician practices have made me realize that many practices do not understand how HIPAA applies to subpoenas for medical records.  More worrisome, I suspect that many practices nationwide routinely violate HIPAA when they receive a subpoena. Here’s what I’ve observed:  Practices receive state court subpoenas that are signed by lawyers and that demand the production of medical records, and the practices automatically assume they must produce the records.  This is a dangerous assumption—the production of the records may…
  • BYOD: Five Things To Consider When Creating Your Policy

    Elizabeth Spainhour
    2 Apr 2015 | 7:12 am
    “BYOD” or “bring your own device” (also known as the “consumerization of IT”) is a fact of life in today’s workplace. BYOD refers to the practice of using personally owned devices—like smartphones, tablets, and laptops—for work purposes and allowing these devices to connect to company networks and applications. According to a Gartner study released in late 2014, 40% of U.S. employees working for large companies use personally owned devices for work purposes. Of those who reported using personally owned devices, only 25% were…
  • You are What You Keep

    Charles Marshall
    31 Mar 2015 | 1:42 pm
    Suffering a data breach is bad enough. As often as it appears to happen, companies that are affected by a breach still shoulder a considerable burden. Management must stop the trains to identify the cause and scope of the breach—and then prepare for the aftermath. Lawyers are involved. The company’s brand is at risk. And the costs—employee time, legal fees, security consultants—quickly escalate. But what if you determine that your company didn’t really need the information that was exposed? Suppose you find out that the breach…
  • SEC Releases Results of Cybersecurity Exam Sweep

    David Smyth
    16 Mar 2015 | 3:18 pm
    Ed. Note: This entry is cross posted from Cady Bar the Door, David Smyth's blog offering Insight & Commentary on SEC Enforcement Actions and White Collar Crime. We’re behind on this, but better (a little bit) late than never. Last month the SEC’s Office of Compliance, Inspections and Examinations released the first results of its Cybersecurity Examination Initiative, announced in April 2014 (and discussed here). As part of the initiative, OCIE staff examined 57 broker-dealers and 49 investment advisers to better understand how these entities “address the…
  • FTC Commissioner Comments on Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights

    Elizabeth Spainhour
    9 Mar 2015 | 9:45 am
    Last week, we posted about the Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights “discussion draft” released by the Obama Administration. On Thursday, March 5, at the annual U.S. meeting of the International Association of Privacy Professionals (which I attended), FTC Commissioner Julie Brill answered questions about her take on the bill and other policy issues. Here are just a few comments from that discussion that merit a follow-up post: Commissioner Brill stated in no uncertain terms that the draft bill is not protective enough of consumers. At various times, she said there are…
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    Seller Beware Blog

  • “Made in the USA” Update: California Law Upheld and FTC Closes Investigations

    Neil Rosenbaum
    23 Apr 2015 | 7:57 am
    A California federal court denied a motion to dismiss challenging California’s strict law regulating the use of “Made in the USA” claims on preemption and constitutional grounds.  As we have previously discussed, California’s stringent standard prohibits describing merchandise as “Made in the USA” if “any article, unit or part” has been “entirely or substantially” made outside the US.  This is stricter than the FTC’s guidance under the Federal Trade Commission Act, which permits using “Made in the USA” if the product is “all or virtually all”…
  • Paper or Plastic? California Referendum Would Bag It

    Neil Rosenbaum
    22 Apr 2015 | 7:22 am
    For years the more conscientious among us have faced a dilemma every time we check out:  “Paper or plastic?”  Which is better for the environment?  Do I even need a bag?  And ironically, now that more of us are shopping online and receiving daily shipments of cardboard and Styrofoam instead of carrying things home in a bag, local governments have started making the checkout decision for us. Long the bane of environmentalists, plastic bags are banned or restricted in hundreds of localities across 37 states. Twenty-two state legislatures have considered similar…
  • Three Data Security Breach Cases Dismissed

    Neil Rosenbaum
    17 Apr 2015 | 8:08 am
    In March, three putative class actions stemming from data security breaches were dismissed due to lack of standing or to plaintiffs’ inability to state a valid claim.  In the first, filed against national payroll service Paytime, Inc. in the wake of an unauthorized access to the company's computer networks, the court dismissed the case for lack of standing, finding that plaintiffs had alleged no actual misuse of the personal information that was accessed. See Storm v. Paytime, Inc. In the second, filed in the Western District of Washington against national restaurant chain P.F.
  • Montana, Wyoming, and Connecticut Expand Data Security Protections

    Neil Rosenbaum
    16 Apr 2015 | 8:21 am
    In the midst of substantial legislative attention to data security and privacy in states across the nation this year, two states took concrete action this month to clarify and expand notification requirements following a data security breach.  In addition, the state of Connecticut opened a new agency department within the Office of Attorney General to handle data security and consumer privacy matters.  Montana and Wyoming each amended their data security breach notifications laws to redefine what constitutes personally identifiable information, altering the types of data that…
  • California AG Renews Focus on Transparency in Supply Chains Act

    Neil Rosenbaum
    14 Apr 2015 | 6:28 am
    In a long-anticipated move, and what appears to be a precursor to enforcement action, the California Attorney General has begun sending letters to retailers and manufacturers requesting proof that they comply with the California Transparency in Supply Chains Act.  This unusual state law, which we have covered in detail previously, requires specific website disclosures about companies' efforts to eliminate human trafficking and slavery from their supply chains.  It applies to retailers and manufacturers that have annual worldwide gross receipts of more than $100 million and…
 
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    Media & Communications Policy

  • Net Vitality Should Be the Cornerstone of U.S. Broadband Policy

    Guest Author
    24 Apr 2015 | 10:17 am
    By guest blogger PROF. STUART N. BROTMAN, faculty member at Harvard Law School and author of the study Net Vitality: Identifying the Top-Tier Global Broadband Internet Leaders published by The Media Institute.  Prof. Brotman is a member of the Institute’s Global Internet Freedom Advisory Council.  The full version of this article appeared in The Hill on April 24, 2015. The Federal Communication Commission’s recent Open Internet Order is intended to develop an enforceable regulatory scheme to ensure that net neutrality would be achieved.  One of its rationales is that unless such…
  • The FCC’s Wheeler of Fortune

    Patrick Maines
    16 Apr 2015 | 7:44 am
    LAS VEGAS – Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler’s speech yesterday to broadcasters attending the NAB (National Association of Broadcasters) Show here dealt primarily with broadcast-specific subjects.  But as expected, he also used the occasion to tout the Commission’s new Open Internet Order, arguing that broadcasters should support it because, like the must-carry rules, the order “assures that your use of the Internet will be free from the risk of discrimination or hold-up by a gatekeeper.” To characterize this claim as 100-proof claptrap would be to…
  • Is This What Net Neutrality Is Really About?

    Patrick Maines
    7 Apr 2015 | 7:40 am
    Recent congressional hearings held in the wake of the Federal Communication Commission’s (FCC) net neutrality ruling provide a glimpse into what is so deeply wrong with this regulation, and why so many activist groups were behind it. It’s an aspect of this matter of which you were perhaps unaware while the FCC was considering its regulatory strategy. Perhaps you thought net neutrality meant what was said of it: that it was intended to prevent the blocking or throttling of websites, or of “paid prioritization.” Silly you.  Actually, those were the interests of those…
  • The LEADS Act and Cloud Computing

    Patrick Maines
    30 Mar 2015 | 8:52 am
    Bipartisan legislation, introduced last month in the House and Senate, promises to reform and update the antiquated Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) and in the process push back against the practice by agencies of government to gain access to personal data stored on U.S. corporation servers abroad. The legislation, called the LEADS Act, is co-sponsored in the Senate by Sens. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), Chris Coons (D-Del.), and Dean Heller (R-Nev.), and in the House by Reps. Tom Marino (R-Pa.) and Suzan DelBene (D-Wash.). Short for “Law Enforcement Access to Data Stored Abroad,” the…
  • What Changed the FCC Chairman’s Mind?

    Patrick Maines
    3 Mar 2015 | 7:41 am
    On the occasion last week of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)’s passage of “net neutrality” regulations, Tom Wheeler, chairman of the Commission, announced that it was “the proudest day of my public policy life.”  It’s not known whether that statement is a reflection of how little Wheeler feels he’s accomplished in life, or an embarrassing attempt to take credit for something that was forced on him. What we do know is that the regulation that passed with his vote – and those of the other two Democrats on the Commission – was not the much sounder one Wheeler…
 
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    media law news - Google News

  • New Montana Law Protects Employee Social Media Accounts - The National Law Review

    24 Apr 2015 | 1:42 pm
    New Montana Law Protects Employee Social Media AccountsThe National Law ReviewYesterday, Montana became the twentieth state to enact a law protecting employees from employer interference with personal social media accounts. The law, which takes effect immediately, prohibits employers from requiring or requesting that a current
  • Insights into the Future of the Media's Coverage of the law: The Reporter's ... - The National Law Review

    24 Apr 2015 | 9:59 am
    Insights into the Future of the Media's Coverage of the law: The Reporter's The National Law ReviewThe 2015 Legal Marketing Association's (LMA) Pre-Conference workshop, Breakthroughs in PR, Content and Communications, was jam packed with useful practice tips. It ended with a panel featuring various professionals who are prominent in legal media, ...
  • Portuguese media express outrage at politicians' proposed new rules on ... - The Republic

    24 Apr 2015 | 5:38 am
    Portuguese media express outrage at politicians' proposed new rules on The RepublicA draft of the law, disclosed Friday, includes a proposal for coverage plans to be presented to a committee including officials from the National Electoral Commission and the Media Regulatory Body. Failure to do so would bring a fine of up to 50,000 and more »
  • Labor Law: Social media passwords - Richmond.com

    21 Apr 2015 | 3:39 am
    Richmond.comLabor Law: Social media passwordsRichmond.comVirginia has become the latest among dozens of states to prohibit an employer to require current or prospective employees from disclosing their social media passwords in the course of employment. Under Virginia's new law, which goes into effect July 1, ...
  • Venice Commission members review media law in Budapest - Politics.hu

    20 Apr 2015 | 3:06 am
    Venice Commission members review media law in BudapestPolitics.huThe Venice Commission has asked questions about Hungary's media regulations in preparation for a report they are writing, lawmakers of the Socialist Party said.The decision by the commission to revisit the subject of the media law serves as a warning
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    Laurence Kaye on Digital Media Law

  • 2015 - The Digital Media Law Battle Lines Are Drawn

    LaurenceKaye
    29 Mar 2015 | 10:56 am
    Dear reader Make no mistake, this year marks the start of the real showdown for copyright law in Europe, alongside parallel debates taking place in the US and elsewhere. The momentum for change in Europe comes from the inclusion of copyright (as well as data protection, telecoms regulation, digital infrastructure et al) as part of Commissioner Oettinger's Digital Single Market Agenda portfolio. You can get the picture from the Commission's Digital Single Market infographic - here - and the words in the Commission's Press Release issued on March 25th here, which set out…
  • Data protection and the digital agenda

    LaurenceKaye
    2 Mar 2015 | 11:00 am
    Dear reader For as many years as I can remember, my mantra at the beginning of the year has been that "This year, privacy and data protection will be high on the Board agenda." And each year, with a few exceptions, it hasn't. But perhaps 2015 will be different. For instance, there were quite a few comments at Davos about loss of trust in the US consumer technology giants, drawing parallels with the banking industry. For other reasons, privacy and data protection is in the news, as the terrorist attacks in France have brought into focus the rights of the State to intercept and…
  • Rights in databases: IP rights 0: Contracts 1

    LaurenceKaye
    29 Jan 2015 | 12:26 am
    Dear reader Apologies for the rather cryptic title of this post which concerns this month's decision of the European Court of Justice in Ryanair Ltd vs PR Aviation BV. This goes back to 2010 and Ryanair's complaint to a Dutch Court about PR Aviation 'scrapping' the Ryanair database. PR Aviation operate a price comparison and booking site for flights, for which purpose it scraped data from the Ryanair website. The case illustrates that in an age of 'machine to machine' communications, contracts and licences may trump intellectual property rights. Ryanair argued…
  • Copyright & Innovation - let's get this right

    LaurenceKaye
    24 Jan 2015 | 10:47 am
    Dear reader 2015 is set to be the year of copyright debate. My friends at the IPKat Blog describe here how things are hotting up, following the European Commission publishing its Report on responses to last year's Copyright Consultation, and, as IPKat reports, the  EU Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, once again made clear on Twitter that having “modern copyright rules” is one of the key goals for 2015. You'll know how quickly the copyright debate becomes polarised. But I'm going to take the risk of being labelled 'luddite' when I take issue…
  • Google News - hasta la vista

    LaurenceKaye
    12 Dec 2014 | 9:21 am
    Dear reader I've written on a number of occasions over the years on how the liability position of Google and other intermediaries is shifting from a simple "I'm just a host, so don't look to me" to one of increasing responsibility. In the Court of Justice of the EU's decision in Google Spain and Google, Inc vs. AEPD (Spanish Data Protection Authority) and Snr. Gonzalez, the Court was clear that Google, Inc was a 'data controller' and so within scope of European data protection law. Yesterday, Google announced that it is shutting down Google News in…
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    Shear on Social Media Law

  • Twitter Quietly Updates Its Terms of Service

    20 Apr 2015 | 6:56 am
    According to Mashable, Twitter quietly updated its Terms of Service on Friday in anticipation of new European Data Protection (privacy) laws.  Unfortunately for U.S. users, Twitter's new terms apply to international and not U.S. based users. An Irish subsidiary was chosen as the location for international user data because it has a reputation for less Internet related regulations.  In other words, other European countries have different beliefs in how data should be protected.  In my opinion, many of Ireland's Internet related regulatory positions are based purely upon economic…
  • Fox News Settles 9/11 Social Media Copyright Lawsuit

    16 Apr 2015 | 12:40 pm
    According to The Hollywood Reporter, Fox News has confidentially settled its 9/11 photo social media lawsuit.  The case commenced soon after September 11, 2013 because Fox News' "Justice with Judge Jeanine" posted on Facebook the iconic photo of three firefighters raising the American flag at the ruins of the World Trade Center without obtaining permission from the copyright holder.    Copyright issues are becoming more challenging in the Social Media Age.  However, its important to read and understand the terms of service and privacy policy of each platform. …
  • European Commission: Google's Conduct Infringes on Antitrust Rules

    15 Apr 2015 | 8:00 am
    The European Commission (EC) has sent a Statement of Objections (i.e. a formal complaint) against Google for violating European antitrust laws.  In particular, the EC alleges Google “has abused its dominant position in the markets for general internet search services in the European Economic Area (EEA) by systematically favouring its own comparison shopping product in its general search results pages.  The Commission's preliminary view is that such conduct infringes EU antitrust rules because it stifles competition and harms consumers.”According to the EC’s press release, it…
  • Facebook faces new class action privacy lawsuit in Austria

    9 Apr 2015 | 6:56 am
    A new class action lawsuit has been filed against Facebook in Austria by privacy advocate Max Schrems.  The lawsuit alleges that Facebook has breached EU privacy law due to its privacy practices and involvement in the NSA’s Prism program.Max Schrems has been a thorn in Facebook's side for years.  He appeared in the documentary "Terms and Conditions May Apply" a couple of years ago where he discussed the data and metadata Facebook had collected on him and others.  Schrems has been advocating against Facebook's data collection practices for years so it will be interesting to…
  • Maryland's Student Data Privacy Act of 2015 Is Needed

    1 Apr 2015 | 8:00 pm
    The Internet and broadband access has led to many innovations in how we teach our children. During the past 10 years, K-12 schools have implemented new and exciting technologies that will help students learn and be prepared for life inside and outside of the workforce. Unfortunately, privacy law has not kept up with the technology that is being utilized by our schools because the primary student privacy law, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) was enacted in 1974 and it has not been updated to account for all of the new digital activities and metadata that is being created…
 
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