Appeals Court Upholds Federal Trade Commission’s New Role as Privacy Cop

A recent decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit—FTC v. Wyndham Worldwide Corporation—may prove to be a watershed moment for the development of federal privacy law. The Federal Trade Commission is an executive agency charged with taking action against “unfair” trade practices. In the absence of a coordinated response at the[…]

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VR Modeling Has a Lot of Benefits, But Copyright Isn’t One of Them

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With the surging popularity of virtual reality technologies has come a wave of companies creating content for virtual worlds.  This includes not only the design of new and fanciful creations, but also scans of the existing, physical world.  A lot of scans. The demand for virtual recreations of the physical world is more than understandable. “The[…]

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The Internet of Things Has No Clothes – A Defcon 23 Summary

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I spent last weekend at Defcon 23, the annual hackerpalooza in Las Vegas. As usual, the experience was good for quickly disabusing people like me of the comfortable fiction that any digital information is truly secure. In five simultaneous tracks over three days and multiple ongoing “villages,” computer-savvy technophiles demonstrated their ability to gain unintended[…]

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Do You Know Who Is Watching Your Data Use? (Guest Post)

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This guest post is authored by Kim DeLisle, a blogger for www.securethoughts.com. Kim says: “I am so excited to be writing for Wassom.com. This website is a great source for information and interesting opinions. In particular I think readers would be well-informed by this piece which also touches on the topic of internet surveillance.” Your data[…]

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The Internet of Things That Eavesdrop and Invade Privacy

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A recent decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit shed light on theories plaintiffs will use in privacy litigation against owners of Internet of Things (IoT) connected devices. Already known in the legal blogosphere as “the butt dialing case,” the court’s July 21, 2015 opinion in Huff v. Spaw considered federal[…]

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Privacy and Connected Cars

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Earlier this week I had the pleasure of being a panelist at the Automated Vehicles Symposium 2015 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Our topic was “Privacy Issues Unique to Automated Vehicles,” though there was a lot of discussion about all degrees of “connected cars”–not just the “autonomous” kind. To put that topic in context, I surveyed[…]

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FTC Responds to Questions on Social Media Endorsements

|In 2009, the Federal Trade Commission put the social media world on edge when it released updated Endorsement Guidelines that made it clear that they were watching social media for deceptive and misleading endorsements. Companies doing social media marketing set about experimenting (some successfully, some not) with various ways to convey the required disclosures in as few[…]

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Is Ascribe the Answer to the Web’s Infringement Problem? [UPDATED]

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“The end of piracy?” That’s one of the breathless sub-headers from TNW’s recent article about Ascribe, a German start-up.  Ascribe uses blockchain technology–the same string of software used in Bitcoin crypto-currency–to authenticate works of digital art. Artists submit their works to the service, and receive in return a unique bit of code that identifies the work as belonging[…]

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Social Reading Raises New Copyright and Publicity Rights Issues

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The following is paraphrased from a talk I gave at the International Digital Publishing Forum’s 2015 Digital Book Conference in Manhattan. Recent Innovations in Social Reading “Social reading” is a publishing industry buzzword that has come to encompass a variety of methods for using digital platforms to expand the reading experience. This includes such simple features[…]

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Privacy, Law, and Ethics in Augmented Reality Panel at AWE 2015 [VIDEO]

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As AR comes into its own, the legal and ethical issues that come with it can’t be ignored. On June 8, 2015, I had the honor of hosting a 50-minute panel discussion on these topics with Dave Griesbach (Security Expert, Google), Jerri Lynn Hogg (Professor, Fielding University), and Dave Lorenzini (Founder, CEO, EFX). Not only did these[…]

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