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Socially Aware Blog The Law and Business of Social Media

Category Archives: DMCA

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Hot Off the Press: The April Issue of Our Socially Aware Newsletter Is Now Available

Posted in Copyright, Discovery, DMCA, E-Discovery, Employment Law, First Amendment, Litigation, Privacy, Wearable Computers

The latest issue of our Socially Aware newsletter is now available here. In this issue of Socially Aware, our Burton Award-winning guide to the law and business of social media, we summarize the current status of various state laws restricting employer access to the personal social media accounts of applicants and employees; we explore how… Continue Reading

Keeping Privates Private: The Legal Landscape of Revenge Porn

Posted in Copyright, DMCA, First Amendment, Privacy

Mark Zuckerberg famously stated that the purpose of Facebook is “to make the world more open and connected,” and indeed Facebook, other social media outlets and the Internet in general have brought worldwide openness and connection-through-sharing to levels unparalleled at any point in history. With this new universe of limitless dissemination often comes the stripping… Continue Reading

Thinking About Using Pictures Pulled From Twitter? Think Again, New York Court Warns

Posted in Copyright, DMCA, IP, Litigation, Terms of Use

If you want to use those pictures you found on Twitter, beware. A federal judge in New York recently held that taking photos from Twitter to use for a commercial purpose infringes the photographer’s copyrights. On January 14, 2013, Judge Alison Nathan ruled that Agence France Presse (AFP), which provides subscribers with access to photos… Continue Reading

Born to Mock: Trademark Holder’s Fight to Remove Mark on Kitsch Merchandise May Have Broad Legal Implications

Posted in Copyright, DMCA, IP, Litigation, Trademark

Popular online marketplace CafePress.com suffered a legal setback recently when a U.S. District Court in the Southern District of New York denied CafePress’s motion for summary judgment against claims of trademark infringement. CafePress operates an online “print on demand” service that allows users to upload designs which CafePress then prints on a variety of items…. Continue Reading

Judge Posner Kicks that Flava in Ya Ear: New Guidance on Contributory Infringement from the Seventh Circuit

Posted in Copyright, DMCA, Litigation

Over the past year, a number of courts across the country have decided cases involving contributory infringement and the application of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act’s § 512(c) safe harbor in the social media context. Unfortunately for those who favor a uniform approach to the law, the precedent being developed is in many ways inconsistent. On… Continue Reading

The Potential Perils of Posting Pictures (on Social Media)

Posted in Copyright, DMCA, IP, Litigation

In today’s information economy, content owners are faced with a challenging decision regarding digital content. On the one hand, the viral nature of social media can mean unprecedented exposure as digital content is shared. On the other, that opportunity can come with significant legal risk if companies take an insufficiently careful approach to intellectual property… Continue Reading

Northern District of California Court Addresses the Law of the (Virtual) Horse (and Bunny)

Posted in DMCA, Terms of Use

Online “virtual worlds,” such as Second Life, have their own cultures, customs and economies.  This presents new challenges for applying existing intellectual property laws to user-created content in such virtual worlds, as illustrated by a recent case in the Northern District of California, Amaretto Ranch Breedables, LLC v. Ozimals, Inc.. Second Life places users, or… Continue Reading

Rough Waters: Repeat Infringer Policies and the DMCA Safe Harbors

Posted in DMCA

Section 512 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”) offers various “safe harbors” to online service providers (“OSPs”) for claims of copyright infringement against them arising from certain acts of their subscribers and account holders.  Section 512 provides that in order for an OSP to qualify for the DMCA’s protections, it must satisfy certain requirements.  One threshold… Continue Reading

Stir It Up: Bob Marley and Cease & Desist Letters

Posted in DMCA

Section 512(f) of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”) imposes liability on those who abuse the DMCA’s notice and take-down procedures by making knowingly false claims of copyright infringement.  Courts have issued sanctions on overly zealous copyright owners based on this provision, such as in the case of a voting technology firm that knowingly issued meritless… Continue Reading

Using Copyright Assignments to Control Customer Reviews

Posted in Copyright, DMCA

Consumers often turn to the Internet for reviews before purchasing products or services, and companies are increasingly interested in ensuring that such reviews reflect positively and accurately on their businesses.  When patients post negative or allegedly inaccurate reviews about their doctors on the Internet, however, doctors are often prevented from responding due to ethical obligations… Continue Reading