Monthly Archives: November 2011

SOPA and other @Cyberlaw Links

The news this week has been dominated by discussions of the Stop Online Piracy Act, or SOPA, that had congressional hearings this week. I really liked the following discussions of SOPA:

Why I Oppose the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA)/E-PARASITES Act

Eric Goldman has a great summary of the bill and its problems. Well recommended reading.

At Web Censorship Hearing, Congress Guns for “Pro-Pirate” Google

Nate Anderson at Ars Technica had a good summary of the SOPA testimony before Congress.

In other news:

RIAA Wants ReDigi Out Of The Business of Selling “Used” iTunes Tracks

This was the most interesting new application of the First Sale doctrine in copyright this week. As I understand the business sells a copy and not the actually sold iTunes track, this one may not turn out in ReDigi’s favor. This dispute will be worth watching.

Vint Cerf: The Government Is Going Overboard in Internet Copyright Control

On November 14th, Vint Cerf spoke to the Atmosphere conference:

“He told the audience, “Remember, governance is a big word that includes human rights, freedom of speech, economic transactions on a worldwide basis — it touches everything. It’s everywhere, and that’s why Internet governance is topic A in many corners.”

PhoneDog v. Kravitz

This lawsuit over corporate Twitter followers as “property” is quite interesting. Kravitz left PhoneDog with 17,000 followers, and instead of turning over the account he changed the name from “Phonedog_Noah” to his personal name. On a Motion to Dismiss, the Court (Northern District of California) decided to deny Kravitz’s motion. Well worth reading.

Judge Rules Feds Can Have WikiLeaks Associates’ Twitter Data

On November 10th, Judge O’Grady of the Eastern District of Virgina ruled that government prosecutors can have access to information about three Wikileaks supporters’ Twitter accounts – not the content, but the metadata. This decision has been criticized by the EFF.

Finally, I’d like to note that if people are interested in my firm’s IP Webinar series, the next webinar I’m presenting will be on December 7, 2011 on “Online Works: Copyright Registration and Enforcement.” For more information, follow this link.


TWiL 136 and @cyberlaw Links

I was pleased to be asked back on This Week in Law, Episode 136. Denise Howell, Jay Monahan of, and Matt Macari of The Verge were the other panelists. It was a lot of fun! Thanks again, Denise, for having me back.


Also, for those who may be interested, here is the link to the recent webinar I did for my firm on “Common Trademark Application Problems.

And now, on to this week’s @cyberlaw links –

RIAA Lawyer Says DMCA May Need Overhaul

Greg Sandoval of CNET had an interesting article, focusing on a statement during a panel discussion by Jennifer Pariser that the DMCA needed an overhaul.  She said:

“We might need to go to Congress at some point for a fix,” Pariser added. “Not because the statute was badly drafted but because the interpretation has been so hamstrung by court decisions.”


In a World of Cybertheft, U.S. Names China, Russia as Main Culprits

A report from the Office of the National Counterintelligence Executive named China and Russia as the main bad actors in the world of cyber-espionage.

“Chinese actors are the world’s most active and persistent perpetrators of economic espionage,” said the report, “Foreign Spies Stealing U.S. Economic Secrets in Cyberspace,” which was based on the work of 14 U.S. intelligence agencies. The report also notes that “Russia’s intelligence services are conducting a range of activities to collect economic information and technology from U.S. targets.”

The Digital Death of Copyright’s First Sale Doctrine

Annemarie Bridy’s article is on the First Sale Doctrine and the effect that the Supreme Court’s denial of cert in the Vernor v. Autodesk case had on the doctrine. I heartily encourage you to read it.


Did Chevy Steal This Commercial Idea From a Popular Blog?

It was nice to be quoted by Matt Silverman in this Mashable article discussing the extent of copyright protection in the underlying concept of a blog.


Why Parents Help Children Violate Facebook’s 13+ Rule

This study by Danah Boyd, Eszter Hargittai, Jason Schultz and John Palfrey looked at the real-life application of COPPA and parents who help their children skirt its requirements. It’s well worth reading.


S. 978 – What Justin Bieber Has To Do With Online Streaming Bill

I was quoted in this article from the Christian Science Monitor discussing Senate Bill 978, the Commercial Felony Streaming Act.