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Digital Business Lawyer

Volume: 13 Issue: 9
(September 2011)


"We updated the EU TV rules to make Europe's audiovisual industry more competitive," Digital Agenda Commissioner Viviane Reding said in 2009, which marked the deadline for implementation of the Audiovisual Media Services (AVMS) Directive. "There can be no excuse for any more delay with their implementation." / read more

The US Department of Justice (DoJ) announced on 31 August it has filed an antitrust lawsuit against AT&T, the second largest US mobile phone operator, to block its intention of merging with T-Mobile. The DoJ fears the combination will dominate the market too heavily, resulting in 'higher prices, fewer choices, and lower quality,' sending AT&T's plans to become the country's biggest WiFi player into turmoil. / read more

The Copyright Infringing File Sharing Act came into effect in New Zealand on 1 September, amidst criticism that it is not the correct solution to tackle internet piracy. / read more


The UK Liberal Democrats ('the Lib Dems') recently published a Paper on the challenges presented by the digital economy, ahead of their party conference in a few days. Some of the groundbreaking revelations it brings to light are the need to tackle the problem posed by illegal online works and piracy and to find 'proportionate' solutions to copyright infringement - I think many would agree that there is a slight feeling of déjà vu reading those lines. / read more

South Korea
World / read more

The deadline has come and gone for EU Member States to start requiring companies to obtain individuals' consent prior to placing cookies on computers, mobile devices and other hardware. In its wake, industry players continue to struggle to understand what this cookie consent requirement means. US companies should consider basic compliance steps if they offer websites, mobile applications or other online offerings to EU individuals, as EU regulators have long sought to hold such US companies responsible. / read more

David Cameron sounded a battle cry against social networking sites following last month's riots in the UK, triggered by the suspicion that social media was the catalyst which allowed them to escalate so quickly. These events put the UK's privacy regime in the spotlight yet again, and highlighted how far it is behind the technological curve. Despite announcing the introduction of tougher powers to prevent access to networks in certain circumstances, the Home Office has since confirmed that the Government will focus on how law enforcement and the networks can build on existing relationships to crack down on networks being used for criminal behaviour. / read more

Online operators may face greater accountability for commercial activities on their websites, following the Court of Justice of the European Union's (CJEU) decision in L'Oréal & Ors v eBay & Ors1. The much-anticipated decision was the CJEU's latest attempt to define the fine line between commercial endeavour and infringement on the internet. Although subject to interpretation and application by national courts, the ruling restricts online intermediaries from taking an active role in the marketing of goods and services by their customers where they bear third party trade marks or otherwise embody third party IP rights. In addition, the decision further closes the door on intermediaries with knowledge of unlawful acts taking place on their sites. The CJEU's decision gives impetus to a recent movement to increase the accountability of e-marketplaces but its lasting effect remains to be seen, as Steven James, Associate at Latham & Watkins, discusses. / read more

This year, there have been numerous attempts to reform Canada's copyright legislative framework. Political developments have delayed the implementation of a new law, subsequently resulting in Canada remaining on the US Priority Watch List. Sangeetha Punniyamoorthy, a Lawyer at Dimock Stratton LLP, discusses the recent developments as well as a number of court cases which have been crucial to the evolution of Canada's copyright framework. / read more

'The technology of smart mobile devices allows for the constant monitoring of location data. Smartphones can permanently collect signals from base stations and wifi access points...As with other new technology, a major risk with the use of location data is function creep, the fact that based on the availability of a new type of data, new purposes are being developed that were not anticipated at the time of the original collection of the data.' This extract from the recent Article 29 Working Party Opinion on geo-location services shows just how serious the impact of geo-location can be and just how essential regulation could be, as Mark Smith, Solicitor at Osborne Clarke, discusses. / read more

The word 'partnership' can be used to describe a whole range of relationships in varying settings. In the area of brand endorsements, the word is commonly used to define the nature of the relationship between the brand and the artist chosen to endorse certain goods and services under that brand. Both parties entering into a media partnership have their own interests to serve. The hope and the intention is of course that a mutually beneficial and fruitful alliance will unfold. To achieve that result, there needs to be a careful balance of rights and obligations in the media partnership agreement, as Ailish McKenna, Solicitor at Bray & Krais Solicitors, discusses. / read more

In the wake of the recent Bailey Review into the Sexualisation and Commercialisation of Childhood, titled 'Letting Children be Children', a great deal of emphasis has been placed on the destructive influence of highly sexualised music videos. In spite of the media attention, leading figures in child protection have argued that there are far bigger areas for concern - such as access to social networking sites and targeted advertising - as Angie Lopez, co-founder of WeSEE, explains. / read more

Blogging: Twitter & South Tyneside County Council (UK) case
Adwords: LCC v. Google, Inc.C v Google, Inc.
Copyright: Twentieth Century Fox & Others v BT / 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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