Pillsbury’s Social Media & Games Law Blog

Don’t Rock the Vote: Helping State and Local Governments Fend Off Cyber Attacks

Voting in local, state and national elections could be viewed as a rudimentary form of social media, by which voters share their views and preferences via selection of a candidate or party platform. The distance between this…more
| Elections & Politics, Privacy, Science, Computers, & Technology

How Does a Freeze in Federal Hiring Affect Patent Examination Timelines?

The President’s January 23, 2017, executive memorandum implemented a federal hiring freeze. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is one of those agencies affected by the President’s memorandum. While such a hiring freeze…more
| Elections & Politics, Intellectual Property, Science, Computers, & Technology

Social Media Gets a “Like” from SCOTUS: Comments Suggest Possible First Amendment Protection

When the President of the United States, every governor, every member of Congress, and—as Justice Kagan remarked—virtually every under-30 and 35 year-old in the country has a Twitter account, it’s time for social media to be…more
| Civil Procedure, Communications & Media Law, Constitutional Law

News of Note for the Internet-Minded – DeepMind, IoT and Graphic ToS Representation!

The Internet of Things does not have to be Skynet to threaten us humans; perhaps tired of defeating carbon-based Go and chess masters, Google’s DeepMind pits its AI agents against each other; exactly when will AR and VR be fully…more
| Science, Computers, & Technology

A Tale of Two Trump Tweets: Is It Harder to Prove Defamation in Social Media?

Last month, a New York trial court dismissed a complaint against Donald J. Trump and others brought by political consultant and commentator Cheryl Jacobus that alleged, in part, a defamation claim (libel) based on tweets by…more
| Communications & Media Law

Cross-Device Tracking and the Trouble with Talkative Tech

Did you know that your devices are following you and talking amongst themselves? Creepy, right? From ordering products from your smartphone that you added to your shopping cart on your laptop’s browser to streaming a movie from…more
| Antitrust & Trade Regulation, Communications & Media Law, Privacy, Science, Computers, & Technology

Enjoy Your Visit to Our Country (and Give Us Your Twitter Handle)

At the end of 2016, the U.S. Customs Border Protection (CBP) implemented a rule to include questions concerning social media accounts of travelers to the United States during the Visa Waiver Program screening process (VWP). The…more
| Communications & Media Law, International Law & Trade

Face Value: An Allegedly Co-Opted Photograph Turns into a $2.2 Billion Headache for Chipotle

Because celebrities closely guard their names and likenesses, lawsuits claiming high-dollar amounts for violations of those rights are not unusual. But a lawsuit for $2.2 billion dollars for a non-celebrity claiming a restaurant…more
| Commercial Law & Contracts, Communications & Media Law

Do Not Wait until Mid-Stream to Revisit Content Sharing Agreements

As more and more content that has traditionally only been offered over-the-air, through cable, or on satellite becomes increasingly available via the internet, television content providers must take care in scrutinizing their…more
| Commercial Law & Contracts, Communications & Media Law

Does the Fair Use Exception Shield Ivanka Trump from Artists Who Want Nothing to Do with Her?

Much has been written about how the Trump family uses their name to market their own businesses, but the Trumps are equally gifted at trading on others’ notoriety to promote themselves and their businesses. Consider the tweets…more
| Communications & Media Law, Intellectual Property, Science, Computers, & Technology

News of Note for the Internet-Minded

Virtual reality takes to the air and rests beneath your feet, a smart toy and a weaponized GIF inspire lawsuits (separately), Slack invests in bots, and more! - Will virtual reality on planes make trips more enjoyable?…more
| Communications & Media Law, Science, Computers, & Technology

“Life Is Short. Settle with the FTC” – The Cost of Ashley Madison’s 2015 Data Breach

On December 14, 2016, operators of online extramarital dating and social networking website AshleyMadison.com came to an agreement with the Federal Trade Commission, and several States, to settle FTC and related state charges…more
| Antitrust & Trade Regulation, Privacy, Science, Computers, & Technology

The Freedom to Yelp: Congress Curbs ToS Overreach

Worried about a company retaliating against you when you post a negative review on Yelp or TripAdvisor? Worry no longer because Congress has your back. Last week, Congress passed a law that will make it illegal for companies to…more
| Antitrust & Trade Regulation, Communications & Media Law

FriendFinder Data Breach Exposes 400 million+ Accounts

FriendFinder Networks is a company in the adult entertainment, social networking, and online dating space. Several databases from FriendFinder Networks web sites with more than 412 million accounts, including usernames, e-mails,…more
| Privacy, Science, Computers, & Technology

The FBI Dips into Twitter’s Data Stream

Following up on our earlier post regarding the Era of Hashtag Surveillance, the FBI has published documents indicating that it intends to enter into a deal with a Twitter data miner, appropriately named Dataminr (and partially…more
| Communications & Media Law, Privacy, Science, Computers, & Technology
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