Communications & Media Updates

Read need-to-know updates, commentary, and analysis on Communications & Media issues written by leading professionals.
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Update on Initiation of FCC Rulemaking to Implement the New TCPA Exemption for the Collection of Government Debt

Some of you may remember that back in early November 2015, I wrote about a then little-noticed provision slipped into the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015. That provision, designed to find more revenues to offset government...more

YouTube Rulings Emphasize the Importance of an OSP’s Terms of Service in Social Media Marketing

Two recent cases serve as a reminder of the key role an online service provider’s (OSP) terms of service play in social media marketing. The courts in Darnaa, LLC v. Google, Inc., 2015 WL 7753406 (N.D. Cal. Dec. 2, 2015) and...more

European Court of Human Rights Rules Employers Can Read Employees’ Emails

Last month, the European Court of Human Rights (“ECHR”), in the case of Barbulescu v. Romania, issued a ruling about the rights of employers to monitor their employees’ online communications, including those via personal...more

Federal Circuit Rejects Disparaging Trademarks’ Ban on First Amendment Grounds

A December ruling by the Federal Circuit emphasized the value of commercial speech through trademark registration, and the case may have implications for the Washington Redskins. The NFL team’s Super Bowl dreams may be over,...more

Entertainment and Media Litigation Update - February 2016

Be Reasonable: The U.S. Supreme Court Agrees to Review the Standard for Awarding Attorneys' Fees to the Prevailing Party in Copyright Infringement Suits - Why it matters: On January 15, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court...more

New York District Court Denies Attempt To Defeat TCPA Class Certification By Depositing Funds Into Court, Citing Campbell Ewald

Brady v. Basic Research, L.L.C., 2:13-cv-7169 (SFJ) (ARL) (E.D.N.Y. Feb. 3, 2016) The day after Campbell Ewald Co. v. Gomez was decided by the United States Supreme Court, Defendants moved for permission to deposit funds...more

See You in Court – February 2016

Mr. Superintendent knew that his news for the Nutmeg Board of Education would cause a stir – the Nutmeg Public Schools were looking at a deficit for 2015-2016 of around $1,000,000. While the warm weather had resulted in...more

The Game Goes On: Sheppard Mullin Obtains Dismissal With Prejudice of Class Action Alleging Social Gaming Micro-transactions...

Another lawsuit alleging illegal gambling in a social game has been dismissed. Over the last year, social gaming mobile applications have come under attack from the Plaintiffs’ bar as gambling in disguise. Plaintiffs’...more

The Value of Terms Limits: YouTube’s Broadly Defined TOS Does the Trick

Frequent readers of our blog will recall that in prior posts on companies such as Uber, Ashley Madison and Twitter, we have stressed the importance of having a robust terms of service (TOS) agreement. In many instances, TOS,...more

SEC Approves FINRA’s Funding Portal Rules

On January 22, the Securities and Exchange Commission approved the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s funding portal rules and related forms for entities functioning as SEC-registered funding portals pursuant to...more

The WSGR Data Advisor - February 2016

With a new year come exciting new developments in the world of privacy and data protection. We are thrilled to announce the launch of the digital version of The WSGR Data Advisor. Please visit our site for the latest news and...more

What's a "Yahoo"? An Object Lesson in Employer-Employee Relations

Can you mistakenly fire employees? According to recent media reports, Yahoo apparently did. News about Yahoo’s mix-up were reported earlier this week in various media outlets. As it turns out, as many as 30 employees...more

TCPA FCC Petitions Tracker

Kelley Drye’s Communications Practice Group presents this tracker of active Telephone Consumer Protection Act (“TCPA”) petitions before the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”). With the recent increase in litigation...more

Did You Catch that Hashtag at the Super Bowl?

Early in the game on Sunday night, Esurance ran a commercial announcing that it was giving away more than $1 million through a sweepstakes on Twitter. You may remember that Esurance made a splash with a Twitter-based...more

FTC settles case against Vulcun for installing apps on users’ phones without permission

On February 5, 2016, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced that it has agreed to settle its case against Vulcun alleging that it “unfairly replaced a popular web browser game with a program that installed applications...more

Annual FCC CPNI Certification Due by March 1, 2016; Upcoming Open Internet Rules Will Soon Expand CPNI-Type Obligations to...

This is to remind our clients that the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) rules require every telecommunications and interconnected VoIP service provider (including wireless, cable telephony, and even paging and...more

Reminder: FCC Annual CPNI Compliance Certifications Due March 1, 2016

The deadline applies to all telecommunications carriers and interconnected VoIP providers. Annual customer proprietary network information (CPNI) certifications are due March 1, 2016, for the period covering January 1...more

From Runway to Replica: Intellectual Property Strategies for Protecting Fashion Designs

Designers like Alexander Wang, Rebecca Minkoff, and Michael Kors are all gearing up to premier their 2016 fall/winter collections this month during New York Fashion Week. Fashion Week draws more than 230,000 attendees each...more

Glue Company in Sticky Situation with FTC over “Made in the USA” Advertising Claims—Who Will Get Stuck Next?

In a recent post, we discussed the potential perils and pitfalls of advertising consumer products as “Made in the USA.” As we noted there, different federal and state regulatory regimes do not necessarily follow the same...more

New Guidelines on Collecting Biometric Data Help Businesses Stay Ahead of the Game

The amount of data collected worldwide is rapidly proliferating, and one international organization wants to make sure it’s clear how to protect what is arguably the most sensitive category of that data: biometrics....more

Naruto v. Slater - USDC, N.D. California, January 28, 2016

District court dismisses copyright infringement action brought on behalf of macaque monkey who took “selfies” using defendant photographer’s camera, holding that animals lack standing under the Copyright Act....more

Rhode Island AG says Fantasy Sports is Legal but Should Be Regulated

Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin has found that daily fantasy sports are currently legal under Rhode Island law. Kilmartin also strongly advised the Legislature to establish regulations to protect Rhode Island players....more

Florida District Court Holds That Successor and Assign of Original Lender Has Standing to Enforce Jury Trial Waiver While Loan...

While California does not permit pre-dispute jury trial waivers, jury trial waivers are enforceable in many states. The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida recently held in Thompson v. Caliber Home Loans,...more

Miller Canfield Secures Court Order Stopping Enforcement of Law Barring Objectively Neutral Speech by Public Officials

On February 5, 2016, United States District Court Judge John Corbett O’Meara issued an Opinion and Order granting a preliminary injunction and blocking enforcement of §57(3) of the Michigan Campaign Finance Act, which barred...more

News of Note for the Internet-Minded – 2/5/16

Augmented reality goes to the Superbowl; Cisco commits to the Internet of Things with a billion-dollar embrace (even as IBM belatedly embraces the cloud); the staying power of the sharing economy is questioned; and more…...more

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