Once Again, with Feeling This Time: You Cannot Enact a State Law Making Interactive Services Liable for Third Party Content
There is a lot of darkness out there. And it makes us mad. And it makes us want to do something. And sometimes we cant reach the bad people who do bad things. But we can reach intermediaries who have nothing to do with the bad things. Sometimes, in order to "something," we do the wrong thing. State laws imposing liability on interactive services for third party content is the wrong thing.
Duty to Secure your WiFi Access Point?
Something bad happens online. It happens. Plaintiff has the IP Address of the perp. Does plaintiff know whodoit? Is the account owner of an Internet access account liable for anything that happens on that account? Do you have a duty to secure your WiFi access point?
Dial "L" for Liability :: Sec. 230 Protects Online Service for Errant Phone Number
If someone's phone number gets incorrectly published in an online phone book and the result is that person's phone ringing off the hook (essentially a phone DDOS), could the publisher be liable for the errant phone number?
No Cybersquatting Liability where Defendant Set up Gripe Website to Criticize Plaintiff
There is a difference between cyberpirates - and griping - a Founding Father granted first American right and responsibility. The subject of the gripe may not like it much; but that doesnt make it a violation of the ACPA.
Data and Text on Cell Phone Not Protected by Stored Communications Act
You know all that data you keep on your smart phone? Addresses? Notes? Secret messages. Think its private??? Heh heh heh.... well maybe not.
No, Virginia, You Have No Duty to Secure Your WiFi Access Point
ThirdParty walks up to an open WiFi access point and downloads a bunch of copyrighted stuff. Copyright Owner sues the open WiFi access point for negligently failing to secure the access point. Name three things wrong with Copyright Owner's cause of action. See WiFi Security :: Negligence
Where the Wiretap Act and WiFi Collide
The story of the consternation over open WiFi access points continues to unfold. In this episode, Plaintiff wants to snoop on open WiFi access points to see if Defendant hotels and coffee shops are violating Plaintiff's patents. Is it a violation of the Wiretap Act to snoop on an open WiFi access point? Is it a violation of the Wiretap Act to overhear someone else's conversation on a walkie talkie? Isnt WiFi spectrum the equivolent of a wireless commons, a public park - where there is no expectation of privacy to conversations? See ECPA Exceptions WiFi
In Which the Court Finds a "Get Out of ACPA Cause of Action Free Card"
Seems pretty simple: If I registered my domain name before your registered your trademark, then my use of the domain name could not be a bad faith violation of the AntiCybersquatter Consumer Protection Act. Right? See ACPA :: Elements of Cause of Action :: Registration
Burns Prohibition: Olmstead
Do you have an expectation of
privacy in electronic communications? Olmstead
1928: No. Katz 1967: Yes. ECPA 1986: Yes. Facebook
a Time When Email Costs 26c and Takes Two Days
The USPS is rumored to be running
ads attacking email, attempting to install fear in
the public that email is "insecure." This is not
the first time the USPS felt threatened by email.
In the late 1970s the USPS attempted to solved the
email problem by suggestion that there ought to be
a law against it.
Which We Learn the Difference Between "Being
Slow" and "Bad Faith"
A guy becomes a real estate franchisee and sets up
some websites. But then the franchisee agreement
lapses. Those websites with the plaintiff's
trademark pointed to the guy's new real estate
website. Was he just slow to take down his old
website, or was it "bad faith"?
Which We Learn Whether a Sour Relationship
Constitutes a Breach of Contract or a
Violation of the AntiCybersquatting Consumer
So a guy hirers a web designer to build a web
site, which the web designer does. And everything
is good, until, of course, the relationship
between the guy and the web designer "sours."
And the web designer says, "okay, pay me what you
owe me, and I will turn over the website and the
domain name to you." Pop Quiz: Did the web
designer just violate the Anti Cybersquatting
Consumer Protect Act? No really, that's a serious
Wayward AntCybersquatter Consumer Protection
The Anti-Cybersquatting Consumer Protection Act
(ACPA) has lost its way. The ACPA was passed in an
era of domain name land grabs, where nefarious
individuals would register and warehouse oodles of
valuable domain names, and then extract ransom
from bewildered-trademark owners. These nefarious
individuals are known as " cybersquatters ",
and, according to the ACPA
, they are bad.
Threat From Within
The security vendor-phobe at the head of the
conference bangs on the podium with his shoe
declaring that "The greatest threat comes from
within! (buy our product for your network's
The first of a series of posts on the Anti
Cybersquatting Consumer Protection Act, starting
with a review of the ACPA's legislative history.
"On-line extortion in any form is unacceptable and
outrageous. Whether it's people extorting
companies by registering company names,
misdirecting Internet users to inappropriate
sites, or otherwise attempting to damage a
trademark that a business has spent decades
building into a recognizable brand, anyone
engaging in cyber-squatting activity should be
held accountable for their actions." --Sen.
Abraham, Sponsor of the ACPA
Which We Learn the Cost of Letting a Domain
Name Expire During a Litigation
If you let a domain name expire during a pending
Anti Cybersquatter Consumer Protection Act case,
and are ordered to transfer that domain name to
plaintiff, is now impossible for you to transfer
the expired domain name? Apparently not.
October is CyberSecurity
Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM),
conducted every October since 2004, is a national
public awareness campaign to encourage everyone to
protect their computers and our nation's critical
cyber infrastructure. Cyber security requires
vigilance 365 days per year. However, the
Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the
National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA), and the
Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis
Center (MS-ISAC), the primary drivers of NCSAM,
coordinate to shed a brighter light in October on
what home users, schools, businesses and
governments need to do in order to protect their
computers, children, and data." See CT's information
Dat who say WHOIS Dat when I say WHOIS Dat?
Using WHOIS a discovery technique to discover who
is messing with you, and learning the subpoena's
used in limited discovery generally wont get you
full server logs.
If Joe comes to my Web 2.0 site and posts a
defamatory comment about Jane, I am not a
publisher of that comment pursuant to Sec. 230
even though it is on my site, and therefore am not
liable. But what happens if I retweet Joe's
Hack. A Scrape. A Crash. A Lawsuit. Snap-On
Business Solutions, Inc., v O'Neil Associates,
Inc., (ND Ohio April 16, 2010)
story , we hear a tale of a business deal
gone sour, the alleged hacking and crashing of a
computer system, data that are free except when
it's not, and words that don't always mean what
they appear to mean. Can Daffy's access to a
database be unauthorized if Thurston controls who
has access, and Thurston gave Daffy permission to
access? Does Thurston violate copyright law when
the data in the database is his, and he makes a
copy of it? This sounds like a case for Motion-to-Dismiss-Man
and his somewhat incredible superpowers!
Navy Radio Station in Arlington, VA
This short history story comes from Arlington
Virginia, home town of the 1910 US Navy
Radio station. Back in the day, before broadcast
radio - before the Federal Communications
Commission - heck even before the Federal
Radio Commission -- folk were interested
in "wireless" as a means for ship-to-shore
monopolized commercial wireless telegraph
service to shipping - while the US Navy took
interest in the ability to communicate with the
fleet at sea. The first federal agency to exercise
regulatory spectrum authority was in fact not the
FCC but the US
Navy . Anyway, on with this great story....
Banishment and the First Amendment: Estavillo
v. Sony Computer Entertainment of America
Many of us host or sponsor online communities of
one form or another. On occasion, this means we
must engage in moderation of the discourse in that
community, and, as chance may arise, on occasion,
we must give some chap the boot from the community
for violating the AP or the TOS. Inevitable, the
booted chap screams "First Amendment Violation,"
to which we must respond, "The First Amendment
restrains government actors - we are not
government actors." Apparently, we are correct.
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