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Digital Business Lawyer

Volume: 11 Issue: 3
(March 2009)


OneSwarm, a file sharing application that describes itself as 'privacy preserving peer-to-peer data sharing', claims to be able to resist 'systematic' monitoring of who is sharing files, however states that law enforcement authorities may be able to use its 'friend-to-friend' network to track illegal file sharers. / read more

Google said it would globally test a behavioural advertising product recently launched for its AdSense partners, 'interest-based advertising', which records visits to sites utilising AdSense and uses this information to deliver more relevant AdSense adverts to the user. It does this by storing a number in the users' browser - known as a cookie - to target relevant ads to users when visiting websites that are part of the AdSense programme. / read more

A European Commission report has suggested that a reform of regulatory barriers - such as VAT, territorial copyright, consumer law - which prevent growth in cross-border e-commerce is needed. 'From 2006 to 2008, the share of all EU consumers that have bought at least one item over the internet increased from 27% to 33% while cross border e-commerce remained stable (6% to 7%)', warns the 'Report on cross-border e-commerce in the EU', released 5 March. 'Regulatory barriers could be one of the areas where reform is needed'. / read more


Content owners and regulators keen to enforce intellectual property rights have again reached a stalemate with those pesky file sharers. Content owners could claim a partial victory by forcing The Pirate Bay to appear in court - even if the case goes against them - however soon after the trial concluded (3 March), another potential threat has emerged. / read more

Online companies sign up to behavioural targeting guidelines
UK Government encourages use of Open Source software
EU Council and Article 29 Working Party weigh in on Data Breach Notification
Dates for your diary / read more

The Office of Communications (Ofcom) is encouraging communications providers to invest in super-fast high-speed broadband by allowing the providers the freedom to price wholesale products themselves with minimal regulatory intervention. Rob Bratby and Nick Root of Olswang examine the core principles which will form the basis of the necessary regulation and discuss the issues that are yet to be resolved. / read more

Sweden has recently unveiled amendments to its Copyright Act designed to tackle illegal file sharing, which will come into force from 1 April. Henrik Nilsson, an Advokat with Bird & Bird, examines how the proposals mandate the use of information orders to request information on intellectual property infringements, how the new legislation gels with Sweden's Personal Data Act and potential issues with the legislation, such as whether household insurance - which commonly covers the cost of legal proceedings in Sweden - will cover the cost of file sharing procedures. / read more

The UK Government's recent review of its policy on Open Source Software has again stressed its eagerness to use open source to increase the return on investment it gets from the cost of software licensing and implementation. Jonathan Dickson of Berwin Leighton Paisner LLP considers this strategy, the different types of open source software licences available, potential copyright issues when using open source and considers whether the balance between the perceived risks of Open Source and the potential benefits are being properly thought through. / read more

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently published its revised set of recommended guidelines for self-regulation as regards online behavioural advertising. Peter S. Kozinets and Jalayne J. Arias, Attorneys at Steptoe & Johnson LLP, examine the revised principles and questions on whether industry self-policing is effective for regulating behavioural advertising. / read more

A court in California recently ruled that Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act immunises search engines from liability under Californian law for sponsored gambling advertisements. Joseph V. DeMarco, of DeVore & DeMarco LLP and Ben D. Manevitz, of Manevitz Law Firm, analyse the case and the implications of the court's ruling. / read more

User generated content: GW Equity, LLC v XCentric Ventures, LLC
Web scraping: Societe/IIEESS, Ditel
Advertising: Tiscali UK Ltd v British Telecommunications Plc / read more

About Digital Business Lawyer:

The monthly publication providing authoritative insights and thought leadership on the legal/regulatory issues affecting online business, covering distance selling, contracts, domain names, adblocking, advertising, cloud computing, net neutrality, e-privacy, data protection, cyber crime, the Internet of Things, social media, internet taxation and software / read more

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