LEGAL THOUGHTS

This blog contains our personal opinions on topics that interest us.

Data scraping in California

Last year, I blogged about a case where LinkedIn decided that it would no longer allow HiQ, a data scraper, to scrape public information from LinkedIn's website. The district court preliminarily enjoined LinkedIn from blocking HiQ from scraping information. On September 9, 2019, the Court of Appeals affirmed the injunction (see link). It is important to note that this is a decision about the propriety of a preliminary injunction, and not a ruling on the merits of the claims. Thus, this decision does make data scraping is lawful. While the Court of Appeals did not find LinkedIn's Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) claim applicable, businesses that have their data scraped have other legal c

Happy Thanksgiving

From all of us at the Law Office of Henry Park, PC, may you celebrate this holiday surrounded by friends and family We wish you good health and good times. Image from New York Public Library #holiday

Reasonable suspicion needed to search US citizen phones and computers at the border

Last year, I blogged about how the US Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) was conducting suspicion-free, warrantless searches of travelers' phones and computers. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), and ACLU of Massachusetts challenged the CBP practice on behalf of 11 plaintiffs. On November 12th, the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts in the case Alasaad v. Nielsen ruled against that practice as a violation of the Fourth Amendment's protection against unreasonable searches and seizures (see Order hosted on Mega.nz). The Court started with the border search exception to the Fourth Amendment. The Court found the exception does not g

FTC provides guidance to Social Media Influencers

On November 5th, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued new guidance concerning the proper disclosures for social media influencers (see Disclosures 101 for Social Media Influencers document). The FTC press release includes a video with compliance tips. Some of the key take aways are: 1. If you work with a brand to recommend or endorse its products to consumers, then federal and state law impose certain obligations on you as an influencer or endorser. 2. You have to disclose if there is a financial, employment, personal or family relationship with a brand. 3. Disclosures should be conspicuous, simple and clear. #influencers #FTC

Is it time to renew your DMCA agent?

Back in December 2016, I blogged about how the US Copyright Office changed from its old paper based DMCA agent registration system to a new online DMCA agent registration system. As part of the new system, DMCA agent registrations lapse after three years. If you were one of the first online service providers to register with the new system in December 2016, then it probably is time to renew your DMCA registration. You can renew your registration on the US Copyright Office website through your DMCA Designated Agent Registration Account (see link). Please note that every time you update your registration (via an amendment or renewal), you are restarting the three year clock. Photo by Moose P

Coke Energy

I love Coca-Cola, especially because it has more carbonation than Pepsi Cola. But, I'm not sure we needed a version that will wire you up even more. #trademark

Cookies really need explicit consent

The Spanish Data Protection Authority (DPA) recently fined the airline Vueling for the way it configured cookies on its website. The following analysis is based on a translation of the decision (see link). Visitors to Vueling's website were greeted with a cookie notice that said that "We use cookies.... If you continue browsing, we consider that you accept its use. You can get more information about it by consulting our Cookies Policy." In the Cookies Policy, the visitor learned that they could control cookies via their web browser. The DPA found that Vueling's practice violated Article 22.2 of the Law on Information Society Services (LSSI) which permits service providers to place cookies if

NJ and sports betting contemplate the future of esports

The repeal of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) by the US Supreme Court last year made sports betting legal in the eyes of the federal government and left regulating it at the state level (Murphy v. National Collegiate Athletic Association, 138 S. Ct. 1461 (2018)). New Jersey lawmakers quickly passed Assembly Bill 4111 with sports betting regulations including what seemed like a ban on esports events (see link). A prohibited sports event includes all high school sports events, electronic sports, and competitive video games but does not include international sports events in which persons under age 18 make up a minority of the participants. The bill was then signed

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