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Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) are now considered mainstream technologies, and if your company is not yet using them, it will be. AR has the ability to blur the lines between reality and computer-generated information, whereas VR is further along the spectrum of computer-generated content and involves the creation of an immersive, wholly computer-generated environment. Both are known primarily for their use in recreation, most notably video games, though the technologies are also…
In the most recent edition of Digital Media Link, we explore the legal issues surrounding new technologies, with a particular focus on augmented and virtual reality. As we have seen time and again, new technologies do not necessarily mean new statutes or case law, which usually are slow to catch up. What is a lawyer to do, then, when advising on the legal issues associated with these new technologies? We do what we were…
Given the ubiquity of emoji, businesses have used them in commercial ad campaigns. Honda has used emoji in creative advertisements, releasing Aprils Fools’ ads in 2016 and again in 2017. Twentieth Century Fox created some buzz last year when it placed a billboard in Los Angeles advertising a movie release (guess which one) with the following message: Translation: “Deadpool.” Adweek wrote an article entitled: “Deadpool’s Emoji Billboard Is So Stupid, It’s Genius.”…
The ASA received 23 complaints from individuals believing that the game content for No Man’s Sky (“NMS”) was not the same as was advertised on Steam (Steam is an entertainment platform where, among other things, video games are advertised to Steam’s gaming community). The Complainants challenged a number of advertised NMS features including that: (1) the gameplay footage on Steam misrepresented the game; and (2) the in-game graphics did not match the advertisement. The game…
In a decision handed down September 6, 2016, the Ninth Circuit revived the notion, long presumed dead, that an implied confidential relationship can arise from the context of a business communication or relationship.  While the Ninth Circuit declined to rule on the basis of an implied confidential relationship, it did open the door to future rulings. Electronic Arts (EA) contracted with Direct Technology (DT) to produce a prototype of a USB flash drive shaped like…
Website disclosures are a hot topic these days, and are not new. And yet, you should still be paying attention to the law as it evolves around this important component of your website. There are nuances to consider, and, in California, we now have some clarity on how to analyze a browsewrap agreement. In Long v. Provide Commerce, Inc., 245 Cal. App. 4th 855 (Cal. Ct. App. Mar. 17, 2016), the California…
In “The War of the Roses” Kathleen Turner delivered the most dramatic “woof” in movie history when her character implied that the pate she just served was made from the family dog. While dramatic and intentional, rarely, if ever, should any company take a line from this movie and intentionally imply anything about its warranty claims. Indeed, the opposite is most often true; companies should strive to be clear and express about what is and…
In 2014, the Supreme Court decided POM Wonderful LLC v. The Coca-Cola Company, 134 S.Ct. 2228, which we have discussed in detail here, and here, and here.  In POM Wonderful the Supreme Court held that “Congress did not intend the [Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act] FDCA to preclude Lanham Act suits like POM’s.”  Since that decision, enterprising plaintiffs have tried to interpret the decision broadly to argue that post-POM Wonderful district courts…
The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act (MMWA), is one of many vehicles that plaintiffs use to bring lawsuits over warranty claims.  It is a federal statute that governs warranties on consumer products.  The Federal Trade Commission has enacted regulations governing the disclosure of written consumer product warranty claims. Just this month, the Federal Trade Commission completed a review of its Interpretations, Rules and Guides under the MMWA.  One of the revisions that the FTC made was…