Monday, July 27, 2009

Photos and Piracy

"Internet accessibility of images amassed by governmental organizations, commercial entities and individuals is the basis of novel privacy violation claims. However, Internet distribution of images of both individuals and private places collected from public places remains lawful."

Pictures From Public Places Not Private

French parliament delays vote on Internet law

"A law backed by French President Nicolas Sarkozy to tackle Internet piracy suffered a new setback on Tuesday after legislators postponed a vote on the bill until September."

Source: Reuters

A warning from California

"The FLIR decision is a reminder to employers to be cautious when determining to bring a lawsuit against former employees for trade secret misappropriation. California courts may not tolerate the filing of misappropriation claims where it appears the employer is merely fearful or suspicious of wrongdoing. In such cases, the employer plaintiff risks not only a dismissal of its claims but the possibility of being sanctioned for bringing the action. "

FLIR Systems v. Parrish

Apple and Protection of Trade Secrets

From the NY Times
"The local police bureau declined to answer questions about the case. But reports of the apparent suicide have set off a firestorm of criticism of Foxconn’s treatment of Mr. Sun, labor conditions at its factories and the pressures Apple places on suppliers to abide by the culture of secrecy that surrounds its development of new products.

The case also underscores the challenges that global companies face in trying to safeguard their designs and intellectual property in the hotly contested smartphone market, particularly here in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen, an electronics manufacturing center known for piracy and counterfeiting."

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/27/technology/companies/27apple.html

Monday, July 20, 2009

eBay & French Court Decision

In June 2008, the Paris Commercial Court had ordered eBay to pay damages of 38.6 million Euros to the luxury group LVMH, ruling that the auction sales platform, as a broker, was liable under ordinary law as result of the sale of infringing products on its platform. On 13 May 2009, the Paris Civil Court ruled the opposite in favor of eBay. In this case, L'Oréal claimed eBay should not benefit from the hosting provider protective status under French law, as its activities went beyond a mere technical hosting service. eBay argued, however, it merely hosted items put up for sale by users of its auction sales platform, and therefore had no general monitoring obligation.
In its judgment of 13 May 2009, the Court ruled that eBay's activity consisting in storing the listings prepared by vendors and making them available online was a hosting activity, benefiting from the hosting provider protective status. Yet, the Court suggested that the parties had recourse to judicial mediation, in order to cooperate and agree on measures to be implemented to put an end to the sale of counterfeit products on the auction sales platform. With regard to eBay's advertising activities, the Court considered that the platform could not benefit from the hosting provider protective status, since its role was no longer passive, and such activities were not essential to the hosting activity. The Court nevertheless held eBay not liable, since L'Oréal did not clearly establish the alleged infringement.
Paris Civil Court, 13 May 2009
Source: T LAW ALERT - No. 2009/03 - GIDE LOYRETTE NOUEL A.A.R.P.I.