E-Commerce

News & Analysis as of

Liberalization of Policy on E-Commerce from Shanghai Free Trade Zone to All of China: Allows Complete Foreign Ownership in...

On June 19, 2015, China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (“MIIT”) promulgated a new policy, Opinions on Lifting Restrictions on the Foreign Equity Ratio for Online Data Processing and Transaction Processing...more

The European Commission's Digital Single Market Strategy and its impact on your business

The Strategy contains several key actions under three pillars and the Commission will set out to make a number of relevant legislative proposals in this regard. As a first step to implement the Strategy, also on 6 May 2015,...more

E-signatures – Do They Change Ontario Real Estate Deals?

Over the last 20 years, since the introduction of the electronic land registry system, real estate in Ontario has slowly been making its way into the electronic age. On July 1st, 2015 another step was taken. All real estate...more

Brussels Regulatory Brief: June

This is the first in a series of monthly EU regulatory briefs - summarising key regulatory developments across a number of sectors in the EU. Antitrust and Competition - The European Commission launches an...more

Amendments to Canada’s Anti-Money Laundering Legislation: What’s New and What’s Next

On July 4, 2015, the federal government released amended regulations (Regulations) under the Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) and Terrorist Financing Act (PCMLTFA). While there are some additional regulatory burdens...more

Shooting the Messenger? Websites could face greater liability for third-party content in the EU

Three developments in the last two months suggest websites face greater liability for content authored by third parties in the European Union—including reader comments, posts on message boards and social networks, and search...more

European Competition Law Newsletter – July 2015

On 24 June 2015, the UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) was defeated in its first attempt at convincing a jury to convict individuals for the UK criminal “cartel offence”. The jury was not persuaded that the two...more

Corporate E-Note - June 2015

In this Issue: - IRS Issues Guidance on Portability: The IRS recently issued final regulations that provide guidance on the federal estate and gift tax applicable exclusion amount, in general, as well as the...more

Guiding Opinions to Promote Healthy and Rapid Development of Cross-Border E-Commerce

The Chinese e-commerce industry is rapidly expanding, and the nation is the world’s second largest online retail market. The business-to-consumer industry in particular is expected to see record growth in the next few years....more

Internet Of Things, News Websites Fare Poorly In Security And Privacy Review

On June 16, the Online Trust Alliance, an industry group focused on developing and encouraging best practices in online security and privacy, announced that a recent audit of approximately 1,000 websites showed that 46%...more

New Tennessee Tax Laws

The state of Tennessee recently enacted the Revenue Modernization Act (the "Act"). According to the state, while the legislation does not introduce any new taxes, it should raise revenue and create an even playing field in...more

Free Wi-Fi: German Court Seeks Clarification in Luxembourg

Compared to other countries, Germany lags behind when it comes to free Wi-Fi spots. A recent study conducted by the Association of the German Internet Industry has shown that of around one million public hotspots in Germany...more

Amendments to Japan 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 operations in...more

EU Consumer Rights Directive is in effect: 9 highlights for distance selling

E-commerce is the fastest growing retail market in Europe. Compound annual growth is currently running at around 12 percent per annum, predicted to result in an online retail market worth €233.9 billion (approximately US$262...more

Sports, Media and Entertainment Intelligence - June 2015

ADVERTISING - UK: Tweaks to rules on sales promotions and competitions - The UK’s Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) has introduced changes to the provisions of its advertising code which deal with the running of...more

Now is the time to reevaluate commercial sales contracts that incorporate other documents by reference

Legal documents of all kinds – everything from wills and trusts to commercial sales agreements – often reference other documents. This “incorporation by reference” comes with certain risks. Historically, courts looked beyond...more

Sports Media Rights and the Digital Single Market…is your business ready?

On 6 May 2015 the European Commission (the "Commission") published its strategy for a 'Digital Single Market' for Europe. The Commission's communication outlines its grand vision for a Europe in which 'the free movement of...more

European Commission Publishes Strategy on the Digital Single Market

On 6 May the European Commission released the EU’s Digital Single Market strategy (the ‘DSM Strategy’), with the declared objective to tear down the obstacles to doing business online. The DSM Strategy has been released...more

The EU’s Digital Single Market Announcement – Regaining Europe’s Digital Sovereignty?

On 6 May 2015, the European Commission announced its plans to accelerate the creation of a digital single market across the EU. The new EU strategy will have a significant impact on sectors such as e-commerce, media and...more

Counterfeiting – Bad Business for E-Commerce Websites

Everyone knows that counterfeiting is bad business for brands – it weakens consumer confidence and brand loyalty, erodes goodwill, and creates liability issues -- but this month online retailer Etsy learned that...more

MarkIt to Market - May 2015

The May issue of Sterne Kessler's MarkIt to MarketTM newsletter covers the negative impact of counterfeiting on e-commerce websites, recent changes in Russian trademark law, and an updated list of the Sunrise periods...more

EU E-commerce Probe to Target Online Restrictions for Physical Goods – Not Just Digital Content

The European Commission has recently launched an e-commerce sector inquiry. It will complement and inform its policy agenda for a Digital Single Market in Europe, which was announced on the same day. Companies contacted...more

"European Commission Launches Antitrust Sector Inquiry Into E-Commerce"

On May 6, 2015, the European Commission (Commission) launched an antitrust sector inquiry into the e-commerce sector. This sector inquiry is part of the Commission’s broader Digital Single Market Strategy, which aims inter...more

Websites Required to Post "About Us" Contact Info Under New Florida Law

Effective July 1, 2015, many websites will be required to comply with Florida’s new True Origin of Digital Goods Act. This Act adds Florida to the growing list of states with laws aimed at achieving transparency in online...more

M&A Update: IRS Mulls Change to Spinoff Rules

In a statement that would mark a stark change in approach, an IRS official recently indicated that the IRS may begin requiring that companies seeking to effect tax-free spinoffs conduct active businesses that represent a...more

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