August 11, 2011
Is Publishing Photos of Suspected Rioters and Looters a Privacy Rights Violation?
British police and some members of the public have been publishing photographs of those wanted in connection with rioting in London and other cities. Some privacy experts question of whether such publication violates the privacy of those photographed. Matthew Flinn of the UK Human Rights Blog weighs in.
Vietnamese Blogger Sentenced To Prison
A Vietnamese court has sentenced a blogger to three years in prison over his membership in an anti-government group and his pro-democracy blogging. Pham Minh Hoang, a mathematics professor, was found guilty of sedition and sentenced after a trial that lasted less than a day. More here from the Guardian.
August 10, 2011
IP Rights and Market Power in the EU
Andrea Stazi, European University of Rome, Luiss Guido Carli University of Rome, University of Bologna, has published Intellectual Property Rights and Market Power in the European Union: The Fil Rouge of Consumer Welfare, in the June 2011 issue of Comparazione e Diritto Civile. Here is the abstract.
Intellectual property rights are commonly defined as exclusive rights in the sense that they vest only some people, usually creators or inventors, with the exclusive right to dispose of their intellectual works. Such a definition, however, is often misunderstood and IPRs are intended as a sort of guarantee towards the recoupment of the expenses incurred in the inventive or creative activity. On the contrary, intellectual property rights come with intrinsic limitations. First of all, their duration is limited. Secondly, the faculties granted to inventors or creators bear limitations and they do not confer an absolute control over their intangible creations. In fact, several tradeoffs exist within intellectual property paradigms, which make the protection conditional on the fact that the intangible knowledge comes immediately to the enrichment of society at large. Because commentators, generally economists, use to refer to intellectual property rights as monopolies, there is a widespread misleading belief that patents and copyrights entitle the author to obtain a monopoly in the economic sense. This is very far from reality.
Download the full text from SSRN at the link.
The EU, Google, and Privacy Rights
From the New York Times: an article on how members of the European Union are pushing back against the ease with which Google users can retrieve information about EU citizens.
August 9, 2011
FCC Broadcast Fine Policy
Two recent FCC rulings clarify the rule on fines when the conduct occurs more than one year ago or the beginning of the current license period. In Applied License Ministries, the agency upheld the fine, because the bad behavior preceded the beginning of the new license term.
Applied Life’s argument that the violations occurred more than one year prior to
the issuance of the NAL and are, therefore, beyond the statute of limitations for issuing a forfeiture is incorrect. Section 503(b)(6) of the Act states that “no Forfeiture penalty shall be determined or imposed against any person … if the violation charged occurred (i) more than 1 year prior to the date of issuance of the required notice or notice of apparent liability; or (ii) prior to the date of commencement of the Station’s current license term, whichever is earlier.”
Here, the grant of the renewal application and the issuance of the NAL occurred concurrently. Because the Bureau took these two actions simultaneously, there was no intervening renewal which would have triggered the restricting provisions of the statute of
limitations and prevented us from considering Applied Life’s conduct during the license term under review.
In the second case, WPW Broadcasting, the FCC cancelled the forfeiture for failure to maintain proper documentation in its file, because the sanction was issued three days after the new license was issued, and the sanction was issued for behavior that occurred three years before.
More analysis here from Davis, Wright, Tremaine.
"The Wire" Actress Pleads Guilty To Drug Distribution Charge
From the Hollywood Reporter: "The Wire"'s Felicia Pearson has pled guilty to a charge of distributing drugs and has been given a suspended sentence with credit for time served, with supervised probation. She may travel for her career and is expected to continue with her acting career. She is currently working on the film "Criminal Empire for Dummy's" (sic).
Online Campaigning As Media
Eva J. Schweitzer, University of Mainz, Germany has published The Mediatization of Online Campaigning: Evidence from German Party Websites in State, National, and European Parliamentary Elections, as an APSA 2011 Annual Meeting Paper. Here is the abstract.
The rise of e-campaigning is often associated with its ability to circumvent journalistic principles of news selection and presentation. By this, parties and candidates are said to free themselves from the discretionary power of the mass media and to reach voters in an unfiltered way. This conventional wisdom is tested through a comparative content analysis of German party websites in state, national, and European parliamentary elections between 2002 and 2009. The results show that e-campaigns in all elections adhere in their messages to the media logic. Specifically, they replicate those patterns of offline coverage that have been held accountable for rising political alienation and civic apathy. Moreover, the mediatization of German e-campaigning grows over time.
Download the full text from SSRN at the link.
Protecting Copyright Using Criminal Law
Violeta Slavu, Titu Maiorescu University,has published Protection of Copyright by Criminal Law Means in the Law Annals, Titu Maoirescu University (forthcoming). Here is the abstract.
The author presents the juridical framework for the protection of copyright by means of criminal law, focusing on practical issues that the criminal legislation in force fails to cover. In the context, are exposed the modifications of Law no.8/1996 on the categories of acts which are sanctioned as offences. Likewise, the author proposes some solutions de lege ferenda which in her opinion are necessary even after these new legislative evolutions.
The full text is not available from SSRN.
August 8, 2011
Here An App, There An App
It's back to school time already and the apps are flooding the market. Check out these articles that list lots of interesting applications for iPhones, iPads, Androids, Blackberries, and other platforms and devices. Links to The Law Pod here, the Rainmaker Blog here, NALS here, LEXIS/NEXIS here, the Darling Law Library here, the AppsLaw Blog (yup, there is one), Business Insider Law Review, and Thomson/Reuters(Westlaw). Needless to say, no endorsement implied for any app or publication and no suggestion that any publication not linked to is in some way unworthy. Looking at all of these choices makes me tired. I wonder if there's a nap for that.
One Small Book Deal Step For Google
From the New York Times, coverage of the Google-Hachette book deal.