Archives: In the Courts

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Update on Facebook fan pages: What should organisations do after the release of Facebook’s co-controller agreement?

After another statement by the German Data Protection Authorities (German DPAs) of 5 September 2018 (Statement, available in English here), stating that the operation of a fan page as offered by Facebook was illegal, Facebook reacted “overnight” and released a co-controller agreement, the “Page Insights Controller Addendum” (Insights Addendum, available here). In a press release … Continue Reading

Get your update on IT & Data Protection Law in our Newsletter (Fall 2018 edition)

The Fall 2018 edition of the quarterly IT & Data Protection Newsletter by Reed Smith Germany has just been released. We provide updates on Facebook fan pages, the right to be forgotten, cease and desists by competitors under GDPR, spamming and customer satisfaction surveys, the German Network Enforcement Act, and more. The newsletter also includes … Continue Reading

Florida Appeals Court rules Fifth Amendment bars compelled production of iPhone passcode, iTunes password

On October 24, 2018, the Florida Court of Appeal for the Fourth District ruled that the state could not compel the production of a defendant’s iPhone passcode and iTunes password because doing so would violate the Fifth Amendment’s protection against self-incrimination. The ruling in G.A.Q.L. v. State of Florida is encouraging for privacy advocates but … Continue Reading

Germany: Berlin court holds that bitcoin is not a financial instrument contrary to the practice of the financial regulator

The German regulatory practice has been to treat bitcoin as a unit of account and thus a financial instrument. Consequently, commercial services involving bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies (including trading, brokerage, operating exchanges, investment advisory ) are regulated activities, requiring the relevant authorisation of Germany’s Financial Supervisory Authority (Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht, or BaFin). On 25 September … Continue Reading

ECtHR rules on UK mass surveillance under RIPA

On 13 September 2018, the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) issued a much anticipated judgment in Big Brother Watch and others v. United Kingdom (Applications nos. 58170/13, 62322/14 and 24960/15) [2018] ECHR 722. This judgment, the first mass electronic surveillance case against the UK, addressed the proportionality of bulk interception of communications. This ruling … Continue Reading

The digital beyond: Facebook ordered to disclose circumstances around deleted profile

In the recent case of Sabados v Facebook Ireland [2018], the English High Court ordered Facebook to disclose the identity of a mystery individual who requested that the platform delete the profile of a deceased user of the platform. Around six months after the death of Mr Mirza Krupalija, Facebook received a request from an … Continue Reading

ECJ ruling on fairness of disproportionately high default interest rate in consumer loan agreements

In the joined cases of Banco Santander SA v. Demba and another (Case C-96/16) and Cortes v. Banco de Sabadell SA (Case C-94/17), the European Court of Justice (ECJ) considered the application of the Unfair Contract Terms Directive (Directive) in two joined cases concerning the rate of default interest in consumer loan agreements, which were … Continue Reading

Munich Court of Appeal prohibits Facebook from deleting a post that does not fall under the German Hate Speech Act

On 24 August 2018, the Munich Court of Appeal (“Court”) issued a preliminary injunction against Facebook that prohibits Facebook from deleting a certain user’s post (docket no. 18 W 1294/18, available in German here). Facts of the case The claimant is a Facebook user who had taken part in a discussion on the Facebook page of … Continue Reading

Federal Appeals courts decline to exclude cell phone location information collected without warrants pre-Carpenter, but Carpenter’s future impact still unclear

In his dissent in Carpenter v. United States, 138 S. Ct. 2206 (2018), Justice Kennedy observed that “the Cyber Age has vast potential both to expand and restrict individual freedoms in dimensions not contemplated in earlier times.” Justice Kennedy worried that the ruling, which held that a warrant is generally required for police to access … Continue Reading

Get your Update on IT & Data Protection Law in our Newsletter (Summer 2018 Edition)

The Summer 2018 Edition of the quarterly IT & Data Protection Newsletter by Reed Smith Germany has just been released. We provide updates on Facebook fan pages, cookie consent, influencer marketing, liability of platform providers, framing and more. The newsletter also includes multiple recommended reads on the GDPR. We hope you enjoy reading it.… Continue Reading

CJEU decides on re-posting of protected content

On 7 August 2018, the Court of Justice of the European Union (“CJEU”) has released another judgment (surprisingly its first copyright judgment of 2018) on the interpretation of the right of communication to the public (case no. C-161/17 – “Judgment”). The CJEU held that the unauthorised re-posting of copyright protected works may constitute an act of … Continue Reading

Court of Appeals Berlin decides on the obligation to provide technical protection against framing

In a judgment of 18 June 2018, case 24 U 146/17, the Berlin Court of Appeals (Kammergericht Berlin – Court of Appeals) held that collecting societies shall grant the right of use of their picture inventory as thumbnails even if these pictures can be ‘framed’ by third parties and the prospective licensee does not commit … Continue Reading

German court rules that online retailers must specify the delivery date even for ‘coming soon’ B2C pre-release orders

In a judgment of 17 May 2018, case no. 6 U 3815/17 (“Judgment”), the Court of Appeal Munich (Oberlandesgericht München – “Court of Appeal”) held that online retailers are required to indicate a precise delivery time on their website where consumers purchase products. A ‘coming soon’ notice is insufficient, even where the relevant product has not yet been released. … Continue Reading

Digital token ruled a security under the Howey Test, for now

With the plaintiffs’ bar setting its sights on initial coin offerings, a body of precedent will soon develop analyzing digital tokens under U.S. securities laws. Last week, United States Magistrate Judge Andrea M. Simonton began developing that body of law in Rensel v. Centra Tech, Inc., No. 17-CV-24500, 2018 BL 227097 (S.D. Fla. June 25, … Continue Reading

Supreme Court strikes physical presence requirement for sales tax, with big ramifications for the Internet economy

Reversing a 1992 precedent in Quill v. North Dakota, on June 21, 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a decision in South Dakota v. Wayfair, Inc., holding that physical presence in a state is not necessary to require a remote seller to collect sales tax.  In many respects this decision sets the stage for states … Continue Reading

How big is the risk to operate Facebook fan pages in Germany?

On 5 June 2018, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) handed down its long-awaited Facebook fan page judgement (Case C-210/16), holding that the operator of a fan page on Facebook is jointly responsible with Facebook for processing the data of visitors to the page. Only a day later, the Conference of German … Continue Reading

Asserting the defense of lack of personal jurisdiction in privacy class actions

In the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Spokeo v. Robins, 136 S. Ct. 1540 (2016), there has been a plethora of litigation in privacy class actions over whether federal courts can exercise subject-matter jurisdiction over the asserted statutory or common law claims. However, in addition to considering whether a court has subject-matter … Continue Reading

Unregistered patent transactions will cost you

The findings from a recent UK Patents Court judgment have clarified the extent of litigation sanctions imposed when there is a failure to record a patent transaction at the Patent Office. The UK patents system may deprive a successful plaintiff of its entitlement to recover its full legal costs in these circumstances. This case will also affect … Continue Reading

Supreme Court drops hints about upcoming privacy decision in Carpenter

As previously reported, the Supreme Court on November 29 heard arguments in Carpenter v. United States, an important privacy case about the Fourth Amendment’s application to 127 days’ worth of a criminal suspect’s cell-site location information. While the Court has yet to decide the case, its decisions last week in Byrd v. United States and … Continue Reading
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