Website Owner Liability

News & Analysis as of

Locksmith Locked Out By Communications Decency Act

The Communications Decency Act (“CDA”) provides broad immunity for “providers of interactive computer services.” In essence, if an internet service provider falls within certain parameters, it is entitled to immunity against...more

DOJ Continues ADA Web Accessibility Enforcement

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has filed a consent decree to resolve allegations by a blind student regarding the accessibility of a university's website and other technologies. The DOJ requires the university to pay...more

I accept!

So, you’re ready to launch your new online business or mobile app. The website looks great, and the app tile has an elegant, simple design that’s sure to stand out on phone and tablet screens. Missing anything? Oh, yeah, that...more

Bank Websites Targeted for Title III ADA Violations – 12 Ways to Comply

An increasing number of companies in the banking industry are reporting receiving demand letters from law firms alleging website violations under Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (Title III). These letters...more

When It Comes to Liability, Whose User Generated Content Is It Anyway?

Hospitality industry stakeholders who host sites for online reviews or rely on review sites such as Yelp, Trip Advisor, Urban Spoon, or Oyster, may take comfort in the recent Ninth Circuit decision regarding the liability of...more

Second Circuit Denies Section 230 Immunity for Acts of Affiliate Marketers

The Second Circuit became the third federal appellate court ever to deny immunity under Section 230 of the Communications Act, 47 U.S.C. § 230, which provides broad protection for content supplied to websites by their users....more

Litigation Alert: The Ninth Circuit Limits Immunity From Negligent Failure To Warn Cases Under The Communications Decency Act

Last week, the Ninth Circuit limited the ability of websites and online services to use Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (CDA) to shield themselves from failure to warn lawsuits arising out of the offline conduct...more

Controversial California Court Decision Significantly Narrows a Crucial Liability Safe Harbor for Website Operators

A recent California court decision involving Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (CDA) is creating considerable concern among social media companies and other website operators....more

Digital Single Market Update: The European Commission’s Proposal to Revise the Audiovisual Media Services Directive

The European Commission has proposed legislation in the EU to provide a uniform legal and competition framework for video-streaming services provided via the Internet. The regime includes changes to advertising, the...more

Non-Party Yelp Ordered to Remove Defamatory Reviews

In 2012, attorney Dawn Hassell represented Ava Bird for a period of 25 days related to a personal injury she suffered. Bird expressed dissatisfaction with the representation and Hassell withdrew from the representation....more

SF Supes Vote to Violate Communications Decency Act with Amendment to Airbnb Law

On June 7, 2016, which also happens to be primary day in California, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to amend the City’s Residential Unit Conversion Ordinance (the so-called Airbnb Law) to require...more

Pitfalls in Managing Online Reputations

Whether you represent sports stars and high-profile entertainers, or hometown doctors, architects, and restaurateurs, you have almost certainly gotten calls in the past several years asking for your help in dealing with...more

European Commission Unveils New Digital Single Market Proposals

The Commission’s proposals aim to drive cross-border e-commerce in the EU and level the regulatory field across audiovisual media services and online platforms. On 25 May 2016 the European Commission (Commission)...more

Tenth Circuit Affirms Lower Court Ruling on Meaning of “User” in DMCA §512(c) Safe Harbor

Title II of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) offers safe harbors for qualifying service providers to limit their liability for claims of copyright infringement. To benefit from the Section 512(c) safe harbor, a...more

Hyperlinking to unauthorised content does not itself constitute copyright infringement, says Advocate General

The Advocate General of the Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU) has stated in a legal opinion that posting a link to a website that contains “freely accessible” copyright infringing content should not itself amount to copyright...more

Does Your Company Website Violate the ADA?

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) has is most commonly thought of as prohibiting workplace discrimination against individuals with disabilities and requiring the elimination of physical barriers to public locations. ...more

No Crying Wolf: Retailer’s Website Held Not In Compliance With ADA

At the beginning of this year, we warned that there would be an uptick in American with Disabilities Act litigation related to website accessibility this year in a post entitled Does My Website Need to be ADA Compliant?  The...more

California Ruling On Website Accessibility Under The ADA May Lead To More Litigation

A recent decision out of a California superior court (Davis v. BMI/BND Travelware) ruled that a website operator was liable to a visually-impaired plaintiff for operating a website that was not accessible under the Americans...more

First Circuit Affirms Dismissal of Lawsuit Against, Confirms Broad Scope of Section 230 Immunity

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit this week delivered a resounding victory for websites dependent on a federal immunity from claims based on content posted by third parties. Broadly interpreting Section 230 of...more

First Circuit: CDA Bars Action Claiming Websites Facilitated Sex Trafficking - Communications Decency Act Immunizes Websites for...

In affirming the dismissal of an action seeking damages under the federal Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act (TVPRA), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit rejected "end run" arguments from the...more

The Senate Would Like to Speak With You

The United States House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Governmental Reform earlier this month subpoenaed Martin Schkreli. Mr. Schkreli has been saddled with the nickname "pharma bro" after hiking the price on a...more

Digital Defamation Update: Recent Decisions Highlight Issues with Tweets, Hyperlinks

The rapid spread of social media sites has opened up unparalleled opportunities for voices that might have once gone unheard to resound across the world. While these channels can be undeniably advantageous in many contexts,...more

Immunity Under the Communications Decency Act

To encourage the growth of the internet, the Communications Decency Act immunizes companies that host content from liability for that content. However, recent caselaw confirms that this immunity is not boundless. Accordingly,...more

As Website/Mobile Accessibility Regulations Near Completion, Plaintiffs' Firms Target Retailers

Retailers and other companies are coming under attack by plaintiffs’ law firms alleging that their websites and mobile applications do not comply with the accessibility requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act...more

Legal Precedent May Come From Ashley Madison Breach

The Ashley Madison saga has captured the attention of the public and legal profession like few prior data security breaches. The reasons are obvious: A website devoted to promoting infidelity is called out for “fraud, deceit,...more

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