Mealey's Cyber Tech & E-Commerce

  • February 22, 2021

    Ad Firm’s UCL, Interference Counterclaims Axed In Facebook Data Gathering Row

    SAN FRANCISCO — An advertising company’s counterclaims of intentional interference and violation of California’s unfair competition law (UCL), which were filed in response to a computer fraud and breach of contract lawsuit filed by Facebook Inc. over the firm’s data-gathering practices, were dismissed Feb. 19, with a California federal magistrate judge finding the claims to be insufficiently supported but granting leave for some of them to be amended.

  • February 17, 2021

    9th Circuit Won’t Rethink Ruling Against Google In AdWords Contract Dispute

    SAN FRANCISCO — The same two Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel members who ruled against Google LLC in a breach of contract lawsuit over Google LLC’s AdWords online advertising program voted on Feb. 12 to deny the tech firm’s motion for rehearing in which it raised questions of standing under Article III of the U.S. Constitution.

  • February 17, 2021

    Facebook Accused Of Monopolizing Social Media Market Via Data Collection

    SAN JOSE, Calif. — Facebook Inc. was hit with an antitrust class complaint on Feb. 15 when one of its users filed suit in California federal court alleging that the social network wielded its valuable and voluminous trove of user data to maintain its dominance in the social media market by eliminating potential competitors.

  • February 17, 2021

    Suit Over WeChat Ban Stayed In Trial Court, 9th Circuit Pending Review

    SAN FRANCISCO — One day after a Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel stayed the appeal of an injunction preventing implementation of former President Donald J. Trump’s ban of the WeChat social networking app, the trial court where the case was originally filed followed suit on Feb. 12, holding the case in abeyance pending review of the underlying executive order by the U.S.  Department of Commerce (DOC), per a stipulation by the parties.

  • February 05, 2021

    COMMENTARY: Pandemic Response, Elections, Virtual Classrooms, And Remote Work Drive Online Accessibility Legal Activity. A Look Back at 2020.

    By Sean McElaney

  • February 12, 2021

    ISP Appeals $1 Billion Copyright Infringement Judgment To 4th Circuit

    ALEXANDRIA, Va. — On the heels of a judge’s staying execution of a $1 billion judgment against Cox Communications Inc. in a copyright infringement lawsuit brought against it by a group of record labels and music publishers, the internet service provider (ISP) filed a notice on Feb. 10 informing a Virginia federal court that it had appealed the judgment and underlying rulings to the Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals.

  • February 11, 2021

    Biden Seeks Abeyance In D.C. Circuit Appeal Of TikTok Ban Injunction

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — Citing its commencement of “a review of certain recently issued agency actions,” the Biden administration on Feb. 10 filed a motion in the District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals seeking to hold in abeyance the government’s appeal of a trial court’s injunction preventing implementation of the Trump administration’s ban on the TikTok social media app within the United States.

  • February 11, 2021

    9th Circuit: Safe Harbor Doctrine Protects Against Unfair Business Practice Claims

    SAN FRANCISCO — An electronic storage company that uses gigabyte (GB) when advertising its products to mean the decimal definition rather than the binary definition is protected from claims filed under California consumer protection statutes by the state’s safe harbor doctrine, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Feb. 10, affirming dismissal of consumers’ putative class complaint.

  • February 11, 2021

    Lack Of Falsity, Scienter Dooms Claims In FedEx Cyberattack Stock-Drop Suit

    NEW YORK — A federal judge in New York on Feb. 4 dismissed claims brought by a lead plaintiff in a securities class action lawsuit alleging that FedEx Corp. and several of its current and former executive officers failed to disclose the true impact that a massive cyberattack on FedEx’s European operations had on the company’s business and financial condition, ruling that the lead plaintiff failed to properly plead any actionable misrepresentation or scienter in bringing it federal securities law claims.

  • February 11, 2021

    Google Play Store Monopolization Suits Consolidated In California

    SAN FRANCISCO — Citing issues of convenience and efficiency, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPMDL) on Feb. 5 consolidated nine antitrust lawsuits against Google LLC over its online Google Play Store in California federal court, including suits brought by consumers and developers of applications for the Android operating system (OS).

  • February 10, 2021

    Judge:  Class’s Video May Stay On Internet; Defendant Allowed ‘A Freer Presentation’

    BURLINGTON, Vt. — A federal judge in Vermont on Feb. 8 ruled that class plaintiffs who are suing a plastics company alleging drinking water contamination from perflourooctanoic acid (PFOA) do not need to take down a website and a video posted to a social media platform that provide information about the class “vilifying the defendant” because they “may open the door to a freer presentation by the defendant” as the case proceeds.

  • February 10, 2021

    University Of Rhode Island Enjoined In California Copyright Row

    SAN FRANCISCO — In a Feb. 4 holding, a federal judge in California deemed a plaintiff likely to succeed on the merits of its claim that the University of Rhode Island (URI) circumvented various technological measures “to gain unauthorized access” to copyrighted design automation software.

  • February 09, 2021

    Mexican Companies Urge High Court To Review Service By Email, Forum Contacts Test

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — Two Mexican companies in a Jan. 14 petition for a writ of certiorari urge the U.S. Supreme Court to resolve a district court split over whether service by email to a foreign entity’s U.S. counsel violates the Hague Service Convention or, in the alternative, to grant certiorari and vacate the 10th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruling affirming the confirmation of a more than $36 million award against them based on its allegedly improper application of the forum contacts test to establish personal jurisdiction.

  • February 08, 2021

    Fraud Constitutes 3 ‘Occurrences’ Under Endorsement, Arizona Panel Says In Reversal

    PHOENIX — Partially reversing a lower court, an Arizona appeals court panel on Feb. 4 held that cyber fraud against an insured constituted three “occurrences” under a business property insurance policy’s “Computer Fraud” endorsement and, therefore, the insured is entitled to recover the $10,000 limit for each occurrence.

  • February 05, 2021

    Princeton, Facebook Seek 3rd Dismissal Of Virtual Reality Items Copyright Claims

    SAN FRANCISCO — Princeton University and Facebook Inc. on Feb. 2 filed a motion to dismiss copyright infringement claims brought by a Lithuanian company over a collection of its three-dimensional scenes and objects, telling a California federal court that the twice-dismissed claims merit yet another dismissal because the plaintiff has not yet registered his works with the U.S. Copyright Office.

  • February 05, 2021

    No Computer Transfer Fraud Coverage Owed To Metal Manufacturer, 5th Circuit Affirms

    NEW ORLEANS — The Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 4 affirmed a federal court’s ruling in favor of an insurer, finding that a silicon metal manufacturer insured is not entitled to coverage under a commercial crime insurance policy’s Computer Transfer Fraud provision for its losses arising from cyber fraud.

  • February 04, 2021

    Apple Defenses In Patent Row Partly Stricken By Texas Federal Magistrate

    MARSHALL, Texas — Assertions by Apple Inc. that a patent owner is barred by estoppel from asserting that its encryption technology was infringed by the “Fair Play” digital rights management program were stricken Feb. 3 by a federal magistrate judge in Texas.

  • February 04, 2021

    WeChat Users Defend Court’s Jurisdiction In Suit Over Executive Order Banning App

    SAN FRANCISCO — Opposing a motion by former President Donald J. Trump to dismiss claims brought against him over an executive order that banned the WeChat social media application, a group of the app’s users argue in a Feb. 1 brief in California federal court that the court has authority to review and enjoin actions by the president that are deemed unconstitutional.

  • February 04, 2021

    Antitrust Plaintiffs May Depose Apple CEO Tim Cook, Senior Vice Presidents, Magistrate Rules

    OAKLAND, Calif. — In a Jan. 26 ruling that addressed three discovery motions in three lawsuits accusing Apple Inc. of anti-competitive behavior regarding its App Store, a California federal magistrate judge required the defendant to make its Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook and two of its senior vice presidents (SVPs) available for depositions.

  • February 03, 2021

    Chicago Sues Online Vape Merchant For Selling Flavored E-Liquids To City Residents

    CHICAGO — The city of Chicago on Jan. 29 filed a lawsuit accusing two Minnesota-based companies of selling flavored e-liquids to Chicago residents in violation of a recently passed city ordinance that prohibits the sales of any flavored e-liquid in Chicago, and of selling tobacco products to customers under 21 and marketing their products to youth on social media.