Monday, July 2, 2012

How to be safe(r) online

How to be safe(r) online
With great power...

It's one thing to be responsible for keeping your own electronic data safe from prying eyes and quite another when you're responsible for your client's data.  Just like a client's funds, attorneys have a responsibility to protect their client's confidential information from third-parties. When the information is accessible electronically that responsibility becomes trickier to fulfill.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Apple v. Google (by proxy)

Note: A version of this post was originally published March 15, 2010 in GSU College of Law's "The Docket"

Apple v. Google (by proxy)
Apple is worried. 

Despite denials to the contrary, it appears that at least some in Cupertino are worried that Google's newest phone, the Nexus One, is an "iPhone Killer" after all. On March 2, 2010 Apple filed suit alleging that HTC, the Nexus One's manufacturer, is infringing twenty Apple patents. There are many interesting aspects about Apple's move.

Why sue HTC instead of Google?

Because Google is huge and people generally like them while HTC is relatively unknown.  Apple wants to play "good guy" as long as they can and going toe-to-toe with Google might reveal that the guy behind the curtain isn't actually a good wizard after all. 

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

The Use of Technology in Dating Violence

I've decided to write something different this time. Like other articles I've written it's about technology, Law, and how the evolving interplay between them affects people. Unlike my previous articles though, there's nothing at all enjoyable in researching or writing about this distressingly prevalent issue.

On January 31, 2011 President Obama issued a presidential proclamation recognizing February as National Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month. Although this is only the second year that the month of February has been so recognized, dating violence has long been an issue affecting many of our country's teenagers and young adults.

According to a 2009 study by the CDC, ten percent of teens report having been physically abused within the past twelve months by a dating partner.[1] Furthermore, by the time students have graduated from college 44% of them will have been in an abusive relationship.[2] As February is National Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month, I'm writing about how technology is often used in abusive relationships.

First, it's important to note that technology is not at fault for this abuse, but like any other tool it can be misused by abusers. It's also important to note that anybody in an abusive relationship could find technology being leveraged against them by an abuser.

However, as teenagers and college students are heavy users of technology they are disproportionately affected by these abusive practices. According to a 2007 study 67% of teens own cell phones, 93% use the internet, and nearly half visit social networking sites daily.[5]

Monday, August 29, 2011

EA: If you don't like our privacy policy then don't play our games

As discussed at The Escapist and other outlets, the end user license agreement (EULA) for EA’s Origin service contains some decidedly unfriendly terms. For those not-in-the-know, Origin is EA’s platform for digital distribution and, according to the marketing folks at EA, “lets you purchase and play your favorite EA games - any time and any place you want.” The platform also allows you “create a profile, connect and chat with your friends, share your game library, and effortlessly join your friends' games.” Best of all: “Origin lives where you live. On your mobile phone, on your desktop and on the web, Origin is always there.”

Wow - Origin sounds like a great service!

That is, until you become more familiar with the terms of the agreement and don’t happen to be a big fan of Orwellian thinkspeak.

Thursday, August 25, 2011


Something has changed at The New York Times. This change is to be found in the well-regarded and highly touted "New York Times Best Seller List" which appears to be the list to be on (based on the number of book covers festooned with the banner "New York Times Best Seller").

For the first time ever, on February 13, 2011 the Best Seller List included e-books:
"On the Web, there are three entirely new lists. One consists of rankings for fiction and nonfiction that combine print and e-book sales; one is limited exclusively to e-book sales for fiction and nonfiction; and the third, Web-only list tracks combined print sales — of both hardcover and paperback editions — for fiction and nonfiction." 1

This is a pretty big deal.