Defining an Intercept under Wiretap Act

  The media has picked up on a case in the 9th Circuit that examines the definition of an “intercept” under the Wiretap Act. The district court judge in Bunnell v. Motion Picture Association of America found that a hacker had not “intercepted” messages when he simply copied messages being sent via company servers to a Google Mail account. The judge ruled that because the hacker “did not stop or seize” the Read More

FCC to approve XM Sirius Merger

  The FCC, after being deadlocked along party lines, is expected to clear a merger between satellite radio providers XM and Sirius, so long as the firms meet certain conditions, reportedly the firms' payment of $20 million in fines for violations regarding tower locations and power limits. The approval of the merger comes as a disappointment to consumer groups and Democratic FCC Commissioners, who had Read More

Web Retailers Bear No Burden to Police Trademarks

  A federal judge in New York has ruled that online retailers do not have a burden to affirmatively police trademark infringers that sell on their sites. The case pitted Tiffany, maker of fine jewelry, against eBay. Tiffany asked the court to rule that eBay should be responsible for policing its site for trademark infringers, often in the form of forgeries sold on eBay. The Court ruled that eBay did not Read More

Telecom Granted Spying Immunity by Senate

  The Senate approved a bill today that will finally provide some guidance on procedures for government eavesdropping under what the Bush Administration has dubbed its “terrorist surveillance program.” The bill provides that any future surveillance be approved by the non-public United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. Of particular note in the bill is the fact that telecom companies were granted Read More

DOJ Antitrust Probes Google Yahoo Deal

  The deal that allows Google to provide some advertising for Yahoo searches has unsurprisingly attracted a formal antitrust probe from the Department of Justice. The fact that the Bush Administration’s Department of Justice, comfortably hands-off in recent years, has begun a formal investigation is not good news for the deal. As a report notes, attorneys for Yahoo and Google believe that the deal is Read More

ICANN to Vote on Expansion of gTLDs

  ICANN, holding its 32nd International Public ICANN Meeting June 22-26, 2008 in Paris, France, is set to vote on an substantial expansion of opportunity for new Generic Top-Level Domains (gTLDs). gTLDs are top-level domain extensions such as (.com, .net, and .org). It is expected that the voting bloc will approve the proposal when it comes up for the vote Thursday. Late last summer, the ICANN Generic Names Read More

Japan to Expand Fair Use in Copyright

  Japan is preparing to grant more “fair use” in its copyright laws that is intended to increase competition and bring the nation’s intellectual property laws more in line with the United States and other industrialized nations. Section 107 of the United States Copyright Act (17 U.S.C. 107) sets out certain exceptions to a creator’s copyrights. These exceptions are generally known as “fair use” exceptions. A Read More

Update on Verizon Blackberry 8830 Case

  Not much has happened in the proposed class action lawsuit against Verizon for it’s disabling of the built-in GPS in the Blackberry 8830.   The parties have primarily been engaging in some preliminary procedural matters. The biggest issue so far addressed was whether an arbitration provision in the Customer Agreement could be enforced. The Court issued an order on May 13, 2008 denying Verizon’s Read More

Riskiest Domain Extensions

  McAfee is releasing a report that identifies the highest risk domain extensions. McAfee reports that the “most dangerous” domains to navigate to are ".hk" (Hong Kong), ".cn" (China) and ".info" (information).   About 19% of .hk domains were dangerous, 12% of .cn sites, and 12% of .info sites. Of course, the majority of sites with these extensions are still safe, but Read More

ICANN’s Weak Grip on WHOIS

  A recent article discusses the continuing problems with accurate WHOIS records, many registrars’ complacent allowance of such inaccuracies, and ICANN’s limited involvement in enforcing the accuracy of such records.   Specifically, there is a discussion about the concentration of inaccurate WHOIS registration at certain registrars. Unsurprisingly, the registrars that have the most inaccurate WHOIS Read More