Debbie Rosenbaum

Latest Articles

Website operators often take for granted the enforceability of their websites’ terms of service. In a recent order issued in a case from the Central District of California, Nguyen v. Barnes & Noble, Inc., Judge Josephine Tucker reminds us that such presumptions are not necessarily correct: terms of service that do not require an affirmative manifestation of assent from a website user may not always be upheld in court. Many website operators, particularly Internet…
Over the past year, a number of courts across the country have decided cases involving contributory infringement and the application of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act’s § 512(c) safe harbor in the social media context. Unfortunately for those who favor a uniform approach to the law, the precedent being developed is in many ways inconsistent. On one side of the country, the Ninth Circuit solidified § 512(c)’s protections for social media sites in UMG Recordings, Inc.
In today’s information economy, content owners are faced with a challenging decision regarding digital content. On the one hand, the viral nature of social media can mean unprecedented exposure as digital content is shared. On the other, that opportunity can come with significant legal risk if companies take an insufficiently careful approach to intellectual property clearance issues. One luxury clothing brand, Burberry Ltd., recently discovered just how substantial that legal risk can be. Burberry approached…
As we reported earlier this year, the Federal District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia held in Bland v. Roberts that merely “liking” a Facebook page is insufficient speech to merit constitutional protection. In the case, former employees of the Hampton Sheriff’s Office brought a lawsuit against Sheriff B.J. Roberts, in his individual and official capacities, alleging that he violated their First Amendment rights to freedom of speech when he fired them, allegedly for…
The Seventh Circuit held recently in Brownmark Films, LLC v. Comedy Partners that, under certain circumstances, a trial court may dismiss a copyright infringement case based on a fair use defense prior to discovery. Over the years, the satiric Comedy Central cartoon program South Park and its creators have developed a reputation for biting social commentary. Past targets include World of Warcraft players, Occupy Wall Street, and the History Channel’s recent obsession with…
A recent district court decision highlights the growing prevalence of issues relating to new media technologies arising in the courtroom.  In Bland v. Roberts, the Federal District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia held that merely “liking” a Facebook page is insufficient speech to merit constitutional protection. Five former employees of the Hampton Sheriff’s Office brought a lawsuit against Sheriff B.J. Roberts, in his individual and official capacities, alleging that he violated their…