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Digital Business Lawyer

Volume: 16 Issue: 4
(April 2014)


The European Parliament (EP) voted in favour of the European Commission’s draft EU General Data Protection Regulation in a plenary session on 12 March in a development that, described by the EP, ‘means the position of the Parliament is now set in stone and will not change even if the composition of the Parliament changes following the European elections in May.’ / read more

The United States Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) announced on 14 March that it will ‘transition key internet domain name functions to the global multistakeholder community,’ which will inter alia give control of administering changes to top-level website domain names and addresses to a non-government entity. / read more

On 24 March the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (the OECD) published its Discussion Draft on ‘Tax Challenges of the Digital Economy,’ suggesting options for overcoming the challenges, for example by modifying permanent establishment and VAT rules. / read more


The European Commission’s proposal for a Common European Sales Law (the ‘CESL’) aims to faciliate cross-border trade by offering a single set of rules for cross-border contracts. Here, Louis B. Buchman of Field Fisher Waterhouse and David Lowe of Wragge & Co provide their respective views on the draft CESL. / read more

It has been difficult to escape the media attention Bitcoin - a virtual currency - has received over the past year or so. While some interest in Bitcoin stems from its potential for currency disruption, for online businesses, there may be interest in accepting Bitcoin as a means of payment, like major US retailer In this article, Adam Atlas, a payments lawyer licensed in New York and Quebec, discusses the legislative context around virtual currency, with an emphasis on the law in the US and Canada. / read more

The European Commission’s (‘EC’) investigation into Google, which was initiated in November 2010, looks as if it may be nearing its end with Google having offered a third (and what appear final) set of commitments1 to seek to address the EC’s concerns about Google’s alleged abuse of market dominance in online search. By Paul Stone and Elora Mukherjee of Charles Russell, London. / read more

On 20 February the Council of the EU adopted Directive 2014/26/EU, ‘On Collective Management of Copyright and Related Rights and Multi-territorial Licensing of Rights in Musical Works for Online Use in the Internal Market.’ The Directive aims to set out the requirements deemed necessary to enable the proper functioning of the management of copyright and related rights by collective management organisations. Chloe Forsyth and Scott McKinlay of Harbottle & Lewis review the Directive. / read more

Canada’s ‘anti-spam law,’ informally known as ‘CASL,’ came into force on 4 December 2013. John P. Beardwood and Gabriel M. A. Stern of Fasken Martineau argue that the law contains significant ambiguities, and in this article highlight ten key issues/requirements that organisations looking to comply with CASL need to understand. / read more

A draft bill seeking to amend the Spanish Copyright Act, presented before the Spanish Congress on 21 February, contains the so-called ‘Google tax.’ This measure would entitle media outlets to fair compensation when extracts from news articles published online are indexed by news aggregators, such as Google News. This kind of measure has already proved controversial elsewhere in Europe, and, as Guillem Villaescusa of Grau & Angulo explains, the measure is equally controversial in Spain, especially as the wording of the measure has been criticised for being unclear. / read more

On 6 January 2014 the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology of the PRC (‘MIIT’) and the People’s Government of Shanghai jointly released Opinions that allow for the set-up of wholly foreign-owned enterprises for the majority of types of internet service sector business in the Shanghai Free Trade Zone, as Dr. Falk Lichtenstein and Ada Tong of CMS, China discuss. / read more

E-Commerce Law & Policy explores cybersecurity developments in four jurisdictions. / 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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