Communications & Media Criminal Law

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Australia's proposed spy law perceived as Governmental Mismanagement

Buzzing through the social media sphere yesterday was the story about how a proposed new bill would see potential whistleblowers facing up to 10 years in prison for leaks. So after lifting my jaw up off the floor, I thought...more

Facebook Demands Court Order for Local Threats – Internet Privacy Always Sounds Good In Theory

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

Digital Privacy’s New Age: Supreme Court Turns off Google’s Radio After Holding That We Are Our Cell Phones

In another installment of “Google does WHAT?!?,” the Supreme Court on June 30 rejected the Silicon Valley giant’s bid to stop a lawsuit accusing the search company of wiretapping. You read that right. Wiretapping....more

Status Updates - July 2014 #3

..A relatively new site called Wanelo combines the features of a social media site and an e-commerce site by permitting users to “save” products that they are interested in, and showing them to their online friends. The site...more

Status Updates - July 2014 #2

..The New York Court of Appeals has struck down that state’s “cyberbullying” law in a 5-2 decision, finding that it is overly broad and chills First Amendment-protected speech. The case arose when a 15-year-old boy pleaded...more

GlaxoSmithKline Fined Again – The Cost of Doing Business?

It is seen as the cost of doing business. It may be illegal, but is also highly profitable, so why stop? That seems to be the attitude of many pharmaceutical companies – and the latest proof of that comes in the form...more

Status Updates - June 2014 #4

..Are threats made on social media protected free speech, or potentially criminal acts? The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to examine the constitutionality of a federal law making it a crime to transmit communications...more

Status Updates - June 2014

..The CIA has entered the realm of social media, setting up a Twitter presence and a Facebook account. There one can find, among other things, reflections on intelligence history and fun facts from the CIA World Factbook...more

FDA Regulatory Update: International Crack Down on Online Pharmacies Identifies Over 1,900 Websites Selling Unapproved or...

By participating in the organized, global action known as Operation Pangea VII, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”) made good on its promise to continue working with the international community to investigate online...more

May 2014: Trial Practice Update: Courts, Lawmakers, and Other Groups Grapple with Juror Misuse of Social Media and the Internet

Jurors are expected to decide cases based on evidence they see and hear in the courtroom, after deliberating while sequestered from outside influences. For decades, courts have enforced rules and practices designed to make...more

California Supreme Court Holds Names of Officers in Police Shootings Should Be Disclosed

The California Supreme Court has held that the names of police officers involved in shootings generally must be disclosed under state public records law, rejecting arguments by police unions and municipalities that the names...more

U.S. House Approves Law Targeting Sex Trafficking Ads, Threatens to Undermine Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act

On May 20, 2014, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Stop Advertising Victims of Exploitation Act of 2014 (“SAVE Act”). If enacted, the bill would expose websites and other media to federal criminal penalties for...more

Mock Twitter Account Raid Results in Marijuana Arrest

Last month police raided the home of an Illinois man who created a parody Twitter account of his city’s mayor. No charges were brought against the man because the prosecutor determined that no crime had been committed,...more

Lawyers and Social Media: Ethical Considerations, Problems and Pitfalls

Social media provides an extraordinary means not only to communicate and share information, but also to obtain information that may lead to incriminating, exculpatory and impeachment evidence for use in discovery and at...more

Food and Beverage News and Trends

GMA, others say 2009 FDA guidance on use of the term “evaporated cane juice” has caused chaos in food industry. In 2009, the FDA told manufacturers not to use the term “evaporated cane juice” on the grounds that the...more

New Federal Trade Secret Protections on the Horizon?

Conspicuously absent in the quiver of arrows available to a business looking to take action against someone who has misappropriated or is threatening to misappropriate its trade secrets is a federal cause of action for...more

Sports, Media and Entertainment Intelligence - May 2014 (Global)

UK: London's IP anti-crime unit shuts down leading sports file sharing site - The City of London’s Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit has successfully shut down the Sports Torrent Network, a leading sports...more

Microsoft Mail and the 4th Amendment: Do Any of Us Seriously Think We Have a Right Not to Have Email Seized as Possible Evidence?

A perspective on the recent Fourth Amendment and privacy considerations raised by Judge James C. Francis' recent Memorandum and Order: 'In The Matter Of A Warrant To Search A Certain E-Mail Account Controlled And Maintained...more

Florida Appellate Court Reverses Trial Court Orders Excluding Media From Jury Selection: "Overflow" Courtroom With Audio-Only...

- In a first of its kind ruling in Florida, a Florida Appellate Court has issued a 27-page opinion unanimously vacating two orders of a trial court in Jacksonville, Fla., which had excluded the media from critical portions of...more

London’s IP Anti-Crime Unit shuts down leading sports file-sharing site

The City of London’s Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU) has successfully shut down the ‘Sports Torrent Network’, a leading sports file-sharing site offering its members links to sports events online. ...more

First Amendment And Off-Label Promotion – Prosecute What I Do, Not What I Say

On December 3, 2012, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit vacated the conviction of Alfred Caronia (“Caronia”), who had been tried and convicted of participating in an unlawful conspiracy to introduce a...more

Cyberliability Developments in the Offshore Jursidictions

The offshore jurisdictions are catching up fast with legal issues relating to cybercrime, cyberliability, and the use and discovery of electronic documents. In the wake of the embarrassing leak in April 2013 of about...more

"Deliberate Ignorance" Sufficient Mens Rea For Criminal Conviction Under DMCA

As a Circuit judge recently noted in dissent, the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) strives to "achieve a balance between strengthening copyright law and preserving consumer rights, promoting technological innovation,...more

When Online Behavior Crosses The Line – The Law On Threats, Libel And Just Being Rude

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

Twitter, Evidence, Privacy and Social Media

A recent case, albeit one dealing with a governmental subpoena, shows that the SCA may not be the panacea that social networking sites think it is. In People v. Harris, Twitter sought to quash a subpoena it had received to...more

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