Of Interest

  • The Practical Impact of Carpenter v. United States

    An enormous amount of attention has been paid to the oral argument before the Supreme Court in Carpenter v. United States. The transcript provides tantalizing tea leaves as to whether the Court will find a protectable right to privacy in a cell phone subscriber’s location and many pundits seem to think the day went to Carpenter while I haven’t heard anyone touting a government homerun.

  • A New Front in the Set-Top Box Piracy Wars: Can Sony’s Safe Harbor Save TickBox TV?

    (NB: This headline does not obey Betteridge’s Law.)

    Hollywood studios, led by Universal, have sued TickBox TV in federal district court in California, bringing their campaign against set-top box (STB) piracy stateside after a big win earlier this year in the EU. Last spring, the Dutch film and recording industry trade association BREIN prevailed in copyright litigation against the distributor of a STB called the Filmspeler. The CJEU held that the Filmspeler’s distributor, Wullems, directly infringed the plaintiffs’ copyrights—specifically, their right of communication to the public—by selling STBs loaded with software add-ons that provided easy access to infringing programming online. (I blogged about the Filmspeler case here.)

  • Commentary: The FCC Has Always Defended Net Neutrality. Why Stop Now?

    Author(s): 
    Barbara van Schewick
    Publication Date: 
    November 22, 2017
    Publication Type: 
    Other Writing

    Earlier this week Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai announced a radical plan to undo the net neutrality protections that have been in place in the U.S. since the beginning of the Internet.

  • Year One: Stress Testing the Constitution

    Author(s): 
    Elizabeth Joh
    Publication Date: 
    November 15, 2017
    Publication Type: 
    Other Writing

    The outlandish hypothetical is in every law professor’s bag of tricks. Can a former president sue a sitting president for defamation?

  • Killer robots are coming: Scientists warn UN needs treaty to maintain human control over all weapons

    Date published: 
    November 15, 2017

    "Scientists who specialize in Artificial Intelligence are warning that technology has advanced to the point where we will soon see lethal weapons that can decide to kill completely free of human control. Killer robots raise the prospect of a new kind of war; one in which it’s possible to selectively target and slaughter entire populations at little cost.

  • The Making of an American Nazi

    Date published: 
    November 14, 2017

    "But this activity is difficult to prosecute when trolls know how to conceal their identity. A lone troll might leave his victim only one voicemail telling her to burn in an oven, which would fail to meet the criteria for cyberstalking. When hundreds of trolls do the same, though, the effect can be terrifying. “It’s like a bee swarm,” says Danielle Citron, a professor at the University of Maryland’s School of Law and a leading expert on cyberharassment. “You have a thousand bee stings. Each sting is painful. But it’s perceived as one awful, throbbing, giant mass.”"

  • How One Woman's Digital Life Was Weaponized Against Her

    Date published: 
    November 14, 2017

    "People are starting to understand “that the web watches them back,” says Aleecia McDonald, a privacy researcher at Stanford’s Center for Internet and Society. But we still don’t appreciate the extent to which it’s happening or what risks we might face in the future. McDonald suggests thinking of the internet as a backward-facing time machine that we are constantly loading with ammunition: “Everything that’s on file about you for the last 15 years and the next 40 years” may someday be used against you with technology that, at this time, we can’t understand or predict. 

  • A brief history of crypto (Past Event)

    November 15, 2017
    Oakland, CA

    Registration is required for this free event. 

    With the DOJ recently bringing back the "Going Dark" debate, and now calling for "responsible encryption," what does the Trump administration have to say about strong crypto? Do we know yet? Do they? 

    If there's anyone who might be able to figure that out, it's Riana Pfefferkorn. 

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