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Digital Business Lawyer

Volume: 3 Issue: 5
(May 2001)


E-Commerce Law Reports, the practitioners guide to e-commerce cases, is launched this month, by Cecile Park Publishing Ltd, publishers of E-Commerce Law & Policy. “ECLR provides the most up to date and frequent case reporting that is available in the e-commerce field,” said Lindsey Greig, Managing Editor. “The reports are designed to be a valuable tool for advising clients on the best way to avoid, or to deal with, the commercial disputes and regulatory issues that can arise in doing business on line,” he said. / read more

The launch of .biz, the latest Top Level Domain Name (TLD) has been thrown into confusion, by chaotic policy making by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). “We have seen policy being made daily. There have never been any clear dates for what was going to happen next,” said Anna Booy, of domain name and trade mark specialist Willoughby & Co. The launch of the new TLD’s has been dogged by controversy since their selection late last year. / read more

Microsoft’s decision to sign up for the Safe Harbor Data Protection scheme has breathed new life into the flagging agreement between the US and Europe over the transfer of data internationally. Until now less than 40 organisations, many of whom were specialists in data protection, had signed up to the US Commerce Department’s Safe Harbor. Microsoft’s decision to sign up comes against a background of growing consumer pressure in the US for clearer privacy guidelines. / read more


The decision of Microsoft to sign up with the Safe Harbor agreement could prove a milestone in the development of privacy policies in the US and elsewhere. For a company with such muscle and influence to have agreed to what are in effect European Privacy Standards will give those arguing for stronger privacy policies renewed encouragement. / read more

.biz, the first of seven new top level domains (“tlds”), will go live in October this year. In the meantime, a procedure has been put in place enabling trade mark owners to assert their right. / read more

The current progress of the Tobacco Advertising and Promotion Bill (see pabills.htm) in the House of Lords has once again revived media interest in the subject of Internet Service Provider’s (ISP’s) liability for content, and one of the proposed solutions known as “Notice and Take Down” procedures. / read more

The last 12 months have been extremely busy for those interested in cybercrime (that is, lawyers and policymakers, not just perpetrators!). In the Uk the controversial Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act was passed and parts of it have already come into practice. The Council of Europe Convention on Cybercrime has been largely negotiated. And the High Tech Crime Unit was finally launched, though it won’t be fully operational for at least another year. The next twelve months promises further developments with controversy looking certain over data retention proposals. / read more

Unsolicited commercial e-mail (aka spam) is the modern day equivalent of junk mail. We have all been the victims of e-mails containing special offers for loans, entry into free prize draws and other such marketing ploys. Spam is a novel way for advertisers to target consumers with their product pitches, costing the sender very little and costing the recipient time, effort and money to dispose of. To date, victims of spam throughout Europe feel unprotected by law, and the need for a review of this current situation has been recognised by many. But what is the position on non-commercial “spamming”, by way of propaganda, lobbying and charitable pleas? Whether or not non-commercial e-mails can be classed as spam is a debatable issue. Spam is generally understood to mean “the repeated mass mailing of unsolicited commercial messages by a sender who disguises or forges his identity.” E-mails which have the intention of lobbying or campaigning for political, environmental or other related causes clearly do not fall within this description and, as such, may have slipped through the ever growing net of regulation in this area. / read more

To misquote William Hague, let us take you to a foreign law - to a strange law. To Britain following the entry into force of the Consumer Protection (Distance Selling) Regulations 2000. Legislation which uses double negatives. Regulations setting out rules in respect of the sale of goods but illogically not in respect of the supply of services in similar situations. Could anybody stomach it? / read more

In the Second part of our Special Report on Singapore, we look at grants, incentives, international initiatives, including regional e-commerce projects and examine e-commerce and the financial sector. / read more

The continuing debate regarding patenting of business methods and in particular, software has highlighted how exposed intellectual property is at many UK corporations. The mere existence of such patenting creates an environment of risk and leaves product and service innovation exposed to competitive blocking strategies. / 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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