Communications & Media Updates

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Tennessee SaaS Ruling Highlights Telecommunications Concerns for SaaS Providers

The Tennessee Department of Revenue recently released Letter Ruling No. 14-05, in which it considered whether certain cloud collaboration services are subject to the state’s sales tax. At a high level, the provider’s...more

Top 10 Technology Blunders for Employers

As one who presumably has no nude selfies, you may not be too concerned about a “hack” like the one that continues to afflict celebrities like Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Upton. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t still plenty...more

FCC Radio Licenses: Saving Paper Doesn't Change Notice Requirements

Many municipal governments and special districts, especially public safety departments, hold radio licenses or antenna structure permits from the Federal Communications Commission. The FCC is proposing to save paper and staff...more

Telephone Consumer Protection Act Express Consent Narrowed Again

Albert Nigro just wanted to turn off his deceased mother-in-law’s electricity. He called the electric company, but it required that he provide his mobile telephone number to disconnect service. It turned out though that the...more

Amy, Whatcha Wanna Do (About this TM)?

As we start to think about welcoming in the weekend, why don’t we all hum this Pure Prairie League tune, while viewing this image and reading this very brief blog post...more

Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation is in Effect – Now What?

Canada’s onerous anti-spam legislation (CASL) came into force on July 1, 2014, but there has not been any news on enforcement activity by the regulators. However, that is not due to a lack of opportunity – by the end of...more

Japan – Amendments to the METI Guidelines on Electronic Commerce and Information Property Trading

The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry of Japan (“METI“) recently revised the Interpretative Guidelines on Electronic Commerce and Information Property Trading (“Guidelines“), which apply to all online business...more

Beer Is Not the New Wine: USPTO Again Rejects Beer Trademark Citing Wine Mark

As the number of craft breweries and craft beer brands grow, many breweries are finding it increasingly difficult to register their marks, not necessarily because there are many new beer trademarks filed with the USPTO (which...more

Gibson Guitar Facing 15 Trademark Opposers

A brand owner’s non-traditional trademark application will sometimes gain the critical attention of multiple direct competitors. Gibson Guitar’s unlucky number is apparently fifteen....more

Advertising Law - October 2014 #2

Hashtags and Ads: Top 10 Legal Considerations for Brands Involved in Digital and Social Media Advertising - Advertising, marketing and promotions, both via digital and traditional channels, are governed in the United...more

Status Updates - October 2014 #8

..Doctor in the mouse. What if you could input a list of your current symptoms to Google, and quickly be connected with a doctor for a brief consultation? For a limited trial period, Google seems to have set up such a system...more

The PTO vs. The Phantom Marks: A Ghost Story

Don’t read this one before bed. As autumn sets in and Halloween approaches, my mind turns to jack-o-lanterns, skeletons, and phantoms. Phantom marks, that is. Equally incorporeal though perhaps somewhat less...more

Draft of the Italian Declaration of the rights and duties on the Internet: the discussion of the right to be forgotten is still...

The Parliament Commission on rights and duties on the Internet has recently issued a draft Declaration on the rights and duties related to the Internet. The Declaration, the starting point of which is the...more

German Retail Investor Protection Act

The German Federal Ministry of Finance published the draft Retail Investor Protection Act (Kleinanlegerschutzgesetz, or Act)1 on 28 July 2014. The Act is intended to strengthen the protection of German retail investors – in...more

Debt Collector’s Automated Calls Did Not Fall within TCPA’s ‘Prior Express Consent’ Exception, Second Circuit Holds

Yesterday, the Second Circuit held that a plaintiff did not provide his “prior express consent” under the federal Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) to automated calls to his cell phone when he gave his cell phone...more

Abbas v. Foreign Policy Group DC Circuit Panel

The DC Circuit has announced that the Abbas v. Foreign Policy Group appeal will be heard on October 20, 2014 before Circuit Judges Kavanaugh, Srinivasan, and Senior Circuit Judge Edwards. I thought I would take a quick look...more

The Eleventh Circuit Reaffirms FCC’s Authority To Coordinate National TCPA Policy And Ensure Uniformity Of Enforcement in Mais v....

Courts that have confronted the application of the “prior express consent” requirement of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, see 47 U.S.C. § 227 – a.k.a., the TCPA – have in the main taken their cues from and adhered to...more

Just the Fax: Illinois Appellate Court Concerned That TCPA Settlement Between Insured and Class Action Plaintiffs May Be Collusive

An all too familiar scenario: an insurer believes there is no coverage for a claim, but has a duty to defend its insured. In these situations, an insurer often pays for the insured’s independently-selected defense counsel and...more

New York Family Court Magistrate Allows Unprecedented Service of Process via Facebook; Will Others Follow?

In a little-noticed decision, Matter of Noel v. Maria, Support Magistrate Gregory L. Gliedman—a Staten Island, New York family court official—recently permitted a father seeking to modify his child support payments to serve...more

Strike a Pose, Strategically: How to Take Media-Worthy Real Estate Project Photos

In today’s fast-paced media world with shrunken news reporting teams, yet a growing number of online exposure opportunities, architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) and real estate companies have more opportunities...more

‘Health Care’-Related Calls: Ambiguity at the Intersection of HIPAA and TCPA

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has established exemptions from certain requirements of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) for health care messages regulated under the Health Insurance Portability and...more

The Incredible Shrinking Red Bull Refund: How Should Courts Verify Class Membership?

A recent class action settlement has brought fresh attention to two age-old questions. The first: does Red Bull actually give you wings? The second: how carefully should courts screen out bogus claimants from proposed classes...more

Japan – Google Privacy Case

On 9 October 2014, Judge Nobuyuki Seki of the Tokyo District Court granted a provisional injunction against Google Inc. (“Google“) and ordered Google to delete search results of a plaintiff who claimed his privacy rights had...more

New Jersey bill to prohibit unsolicited text message advertisements pending Governor signature

A New Jersey bill which prohibits unwanted text message advertisements has been sent to the Governor for final consideration. A. 617, which passed unanimously in the Assembly June 26 and in the Senate Sept. 22, if signed into...more

Social Media and Political Agencies

The work that government agencies do is important to its constituents, and using social media will facilitate communication and promote important issues of public policy. Earlier this month, I moderated a panel at the...more

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