A student-run resource for reliable reports on the latest law and technology news

Insuring Patents

By Yaping Zhang – Edited by Jennifer Chung and Ariel Simms

Despite its increasing availability, patent insurance—providing defensive protection against claims of patent infringement and funding offensive actions against patent infringers—continues to be uncommon. This Note aims to provide an overview of the patent insurance landscape.



Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016 Seeks to Establish Federal Cause of Action for Trade Secrets Misappropriation

By Suyoung Jang – Edited by Mila Owen

Following the Senate Judiciary Committee’s approval in January of the Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016, the Committee has released Senate Report 114-220 supporting the bill. The bill seeks to protect trade secret owners by creating a federal cause of action for trade secret misappropriation.



Federal Circuit Flash Digest

By Evan Tallmadge – Edited by Olga Slobodyanyuk

The Linked Inheritability Between Two Regions of DNA is an Unpatentable Law of Nature

HP Setback in Challenging the Validity of MPHJ’s Distributed Virtual Copying Patent

CardPool Fails to Escape an Invalidity Judgment But Can Still Pursue Amended Claims



Amicus Brief by EFF and ACLU Urging Illinois State Sex Offender Laws Declared Unconstitutional under First Amendment

By Yaping Zhang – Edited by Mila Owen

With the Illinois Supreme Court gearing up to determine the constitutionality of the state’s sex offender registration statute, two advocacy non-profits have filed amicus briefs in support of striking the law down.



Flash Digest: News in Brief

By Gia Velasquez – Edited by Ken Winterbottom

Federal Court Grants Uber’s Class Action Certification Appeal

Independent Contractor Classification of Uber Drivers May Violate Antitrust Laws

Self-Driving Car Will Be Considered Autonomous Driver


infringementBy Yaping Zhang – Edited by Danielle Kehl

On March 14, 2016, Judge Selya, writing for a unanimous bench on the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, affirmed the District Court of Massachusetts’ decision dismissing the complaint filed by three victims of child sex trafficking against online forum Backpage.com. Former Supreme Court Associate Justice Souter serves as a judge by designation.

The First Circuit Court opinion can be found here, and the District Court of Massachusetts’ opinion can be found here.

The three anonymous plaintiffs, victims of child sex trafficking, alleged that they were molested and repeatedly raped after being advertised as sexual wares on Backpage.com. They sued Backpage.com, a website that hosts online classified adds, alleging that it had violated the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008 (“TVPRA”), 18 U.S.C. §1595, which applies to anyone that “knowingly benefits, financially or by receiving anything of value from participation in a venture which that person knew or should have known has engaged in an act in violation of this chapter.” The defendant invoked Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act of 1996 (“CDA”), which shields online service providers from liability for material posted by users of the site, and allows website operators to engage in blocking and screening of third-party content free from liability for such good-faith efforts. 47 U.S.C. §230. In addition, the CDA includes an immunity clause that exempts enforcement of a federal criminal statute, which plaintiffs argued applicable in a civil case such as this one.


Posted On Apr - 4 - 2016 Add Comments READ FULL POST

Google FranceBy Kayla Haran – Edited by Ariane Moss

The French data-protection regulator, Commission Nationale de l’Informatique et des Libertés (CNIL) has fined Google 100,000 euros (about $112,000) for not conforming on a global scale with a May 2014 European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruling over the right to be forgotten.

The ECJ ruling held that search engines are responsible for enforcing the right to be forgotten in the following manner:

the operator of a search engine is obliged to remove from the list of results displayed following a search made on the basis of a person’s name links to web pages, published by third parties and containing information relating to that person, also in a case where that name or information is not erased beforehand or simultaneously from those web pages, and even, as the case may be, when its publication in itself on those pages is lawful.

Google complied with this ruling by scrubbing the requested search results across its European domains, such as google.fr and google.de, but did not do so across google.com or other, non-European domains. Google defended this choice (as previously reported in JOLT Digest) as one that would prevent a chilling effect on the free flow of information. In implementing the order, Google vets individual requests by weighing that person’s privacy rights against the public interest in keeping that information linked to that person’s name.


Posted On Apr - 4 - 2016 Add Comments READ FULL POST

Hertz rent-a-carBy Sheri Pan – Edited by Henry Thomas

Howard v. Hertz Corp., No. 13-00645 (D. Haw. Jan. 25, 2016), Slip Opinion hosted by Wolters Kluwer.

The District Court for the District of Hawaii granted summary judgment in favor of the defendant, Hertz, in a negligent supervision, retention, and training lawsuit brought by a customer, Maurice Howard.  Howard initiated the case after Hertz employees wrote disparaging comments about him on Facebook.

The Technology & Marketing Law Blog and National Law Review provide commentary.


Posted On Mar - 29 - 2016 Add Comments READ FULL POST

Iphone4 and NexusSBy Filippo Raso – Edited by Frederick Ding

In the Matter of the Search of an Apple iPhone Seized During the Execution of a Search Warrant on a Black Lexus IS300, California License Plate 35KGD203, No. ED 15-0451M (C.D. Cal. Feb. 16, 2016) Order hosted by DocumentCloud.

Magistrate Judge Sheri Pym of the United States District Court for the Central District of California ordered Apple to assist federal investigators in accessing data stored on the iPhone that belonged to the San Bernardino gunman who killed 14 people.

In response to an ex parte motion for assistance from the Department of Justice (“DOJ”), the magistrate judge ordered Apple to provide the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”) with “reasonable technical assistance” to accomplish three functions aimed at circumventing Apple’s security measures. The magistrate judge accepted the DOJ’s explanation in granting the order. Apple moved to vacate the order. Following Apple’s motion, the DOJ moved to compel Apple’s cooperation, and Apple filed an appeal of the order before a district court judge. At the time of writing, the DOJ delayed the next hearing since it may have obtained an alternative method to circumvent the iPhone’s security without Apple’s assistance.

After the December 2015 massacre in San Bernardino, California, the FBI executed a legal search warrant and discovered an iPhone used by the terrorist. It is uncontested that the search warrant authorizes the FBI to access the contents of the iPhone. However, investigators have been unable to circumvent Apple’s anti–brute-force security features, which include multi-layered encryption, an auto-erase function after ten incorrect passcode attempts, artificial delays between attempts, and disallowing electronic passcode submissions.


Posted On Mar - 29 - 2016 Add Comments READ FULL POST

3642973520_1451bc1137_bBy Evan Tallmadge – Edited by Stacy Ruegilin

SB 180, SB 182

Text and history of SB 180

Text and history of SB 182

On February 24, 2016, the Governor of Florida, Rick Scott, signed Senate Bill 180, Trade Secrets, and Senate Bill 182, Public Records and Meetings/Trade Secrets, into Florida law. This legislation includes financial information under the umbrella of protected trade secrets.  The bills exempt financial information from Florida’s sunshine laws, which mandate public access to both government records and minutes of meetings. This legislation has been a longtime goal of P3s, private companies building public projects in exchange for the ability to collect revenue from them for a period of time. The bill was originally introduced by Republican Senator Garrett Richter. (more…)

Posted On Mar - 28 - 2016 Add Comments READ FULL POST
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Insuring Patents

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Flash Digest

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Illinois Flag

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