Regular readers know I am a fan of Last Week Tonight with John Oliver. The show has done multiple segments relevant to our topics of discussion. They recently did a segment on patent reform....more
After watching the firing of the digital communications manager for the Houston Rockets during their run through the playoffs (read the story here in the Houston Chronicle). I figured it would be a good time to revisit the...more
It’s Spring in Texas which means one of two things – the bluebonnets are out and in odd years, our legislature is back at work. One makes me grateful to be in Texas and the other only meets every other year. Here are a few...more
As expected, the FCC passed the net neutrality rules today. Other than spokesmen for the large telecoms (and perhaps some politicians who listen to that lobby), you don’t hear much reasoned opposition to net neutrality....more
I love college basketball. Given that my Missouri Tigers haven’t given me much to talk about, I thought we could discuss the efforts by this upset Duke fan to have her image removed from the Internet captured during the...more
This was one of the more interesting stories of the year – does the photographer who set up everything to allow for a monkey to take a selfie own the copyright to that selfie? This year we learned that no, the photographer...more
1. You Haven’t Lawyered Up.
OK, that may be a little dramatic, but the worst case scenario is that you have a handshake deal with your co-founders. After all, we are all buds, this won’t go wrong. Even if it never goes...more
A Georgia seventh-grader created a fake Facebook profile that defamed a classmate, according to this Wall Street Journal story. In middle school fashion (I am not looking forward to parenting through this period), a boy...more
As you probably read, the Texas Securities Board approved intrastate crowdfunding yesterday without limiting it to accredited investors.
For those wanting to issue equity through intrastate crowdfunding:
We like to give you information that helps you stay off the radar of the Federal Trade Commission with posts. But, what do you do if the FTC does investigate? I asked newly-minted Gray Reed & McGraw shareholder Justice Jim...more
Law360 reported that two competing DUI defense lawyers are fighting over the domain name www.dontblow.com. Well-known DUI attorney Tyler Flood is the plaintiff. He has been using the domain name www.DoNotBlow.com for almost...more
The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals ruled in a 8-1 decision yesterday that the “Improper Photography and Visual Recording Act” is facially unconstitutional. The case involved a guy who allegedly took pictures of kids at a...more
On Friday, the Supreme Court of Texas issued a 5-4 decision holding a plaintiff needs to establish jurisdiction over an anonymous blogger before a court will allow pre-suit discovery that would likely unmask the blogger’s...more
On Friday, the Supreme Court of Texas issued two important defamation rulings. The first, Kinney v. Barnes, held that injunctions to prohibit defamatory speech do not pass constitutional muster. ...more
A Houston area woman has sued Facebook asking for $123 million because Facebook was slow to take down a fake a profile created by her ex-boyfriend with pornographic images.
The plaintiff sued Facebook and the...more
General Mills incurred blowback on social media earlier this year when it was suggested the company sought releases for all claims whatsoever from anyone who visited the company Facebook page. The truth, as always, was not as...more
Who owns the rights to a selfie taken by a monkey? While it sounds like a law school exam, it is based on a real story as reported here by the American Bar Association.
According to the article, a monkey picked up the...more
Last month, the Sixth Circuit ruled that website operators are not liable for content provided by others (User Generated Content or UGC) because of Section 230 immunity under the Communications Decency Act in the Jones v....more
This weekend The Houston Chronicle reported Facebook did not turn over information requested by local authorities in response to death threats. People have been criticizing social media companies for turning over data to...more
This morning, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in a 6-3 decision that Aereo violates copyright law by retransmitting over-the-air programming without authorization. This will shut down the controversial start-up or force them...more
The mid-terms are coming up, so you know there will be stories of politicians getting into clashes with artists over the use of songs and other content in ads and at rallies. In Texas, for better or worse, the real...more
I’ll admit, General Mills did not go that far. What they did, according to The New York Times was notify customers that if they downloaded a coupon, joined a forum or entered a sweepstakes, the customer would waive their...more
We created this infographic for some of our media clients to give them a one-page cheat sheet on the analysis they need to do when trying to decide whether they can use an image from the internet in a pinch....more
As we have reported before, the Federal Trade Commission requires the disclosure of any “material connection” offered in exchange for an online endorsement or post in their Online Endorsement Guidelines. Now, they are...more
A frequent question we get is what can we do about the online posting about me? Often times, the answer is not much. Lawyers can only help when the online conduct crosses the line into a cognizable cause of action. Figuring...more