Category Archives: Misc. Internet Law Topics

DMCA

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act – The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), codified in 17 U.S.C. § 512, amended the U.S. Copyright Act of 1976. The DMCA provides for severe civil and criminal penalties for circumventing technical measures protecting copyrighted works. The DMCA protects Internet Service Providers (ISPs) from liability arising from acts by the ISP’s customers. However, there are certain conditions that an ISP must meet in order to qualify for the Act’s safe harbor provisions.

To enjoy safe harbor protection, an ISP must:

1. Implement a policy to terminate infringers;

2. Designate a service provider agent for notification of claims of infringement.

3. Provide means to receive notice of infringement and upon obtaining notice act expeditiously to remove, or disable access to the infringing material; and

4. Have no actual knowledge of the infringing activity.

Whether you are an Internet Service Provider or an individual or business who is the victim of online copyright infringement, or whether you are accused of online copyright infringement, our copyright attorneys  practicing Internet law can provide you with the advice that applies to your particular situation.

Internet Trial Attorney

An Internet Law pioneer with a proven record, Domingo J. Rivera was the first attorney in the United States to win a complex jury trial involving Federal Copyright Infringement, music piracy criminal allegations.

The importance of having a computer expert as your Internet trial attorney

During a cyber trial, whether related to copyright infringement, trademark infringement, domain name dispute, Internet defamation, or a computer crime trial, it is extremely important to have an attorney who has not only legal subject matter knowledge, but is also experienced in computer technology and the technical concepts related to the Internet.  We recently completed a long and complex cyber crime trial. We were fully equipped to expertly handle the criminal defense aspects of the case, we knew the law, how to cross-examine witnesses, and how to establish reasonable doubt. However, during the trial, it was our technical knowledge that allowed us to provide a unique perspective to the evidence presented.

The evidence presented at trial contained technical details that only an attorney with Internet technology knowledge would have recognized.  Your Internet lawyer must not only be effective in arguing Internet law, but must have superior technical knowledge to recognize complex technical issues “on the spot.”

It takes a lot of finesse, patience, and competence to explain to effectively explain technical issues to the court. The typical non-technical attorney attempting to venture into Internet law may not understanding these technical concepts.  Our expertise includes technical degrees in Computer Engineering and years of Internet technology experience.

Contact an Internet lawyer

Trademark

Trademark

A Trademark identifies your company’s goods from the goods of your competitors or other third parties. Trademark Registration allows you to keep your competitors from using your company or product name, symbol or design.

When you register a Trademark, you are legally presumed to be the owner of the mark and you can stop others from using a name that is confusingly similar to your trademark. Additionally, registration of your Trademark allows you to obtain up to three times the amount of your losses if you have to sue for infringement of your registered Trademark.  However, registration is not required in order for you to be able to maintain a cause of action for trademark infringement.

Internet trademark infringement occurs frequently in domain name registration, meta tags, and keyword search advertising. As your cyber trademark lawyer, we provide you advice on how to protect your trademark rights against Internet trademark infringement.  Some instances of Internet trademark infringement include:

Trademark Infringement in Domain Names, Cybersquatting, and Cyber-piracy

Trademark Infringement in Meta Tags

Trademark Infringement in Keyword Search Advertising

We are your Internet trademark infringement attorney, Internet trademark lawyer, Cybersquatting legal counsel, cyber-piracy legal adviser and trademark law professional.

Copyright

Copyright

A copyright is the legal protection for the artistic and literary work that you create. Copyrightable items include music, books, websites, graphics, poetry, stories, and software. Your copyrighted works may not be copied, reproduced, distributed or displayed without your consent.

Registration, although not required is advisable and important if you wish to protect your work. Copyright registration provides significant benefits, including evidence that you created your own works. It is significantly more difficult to maintain a legal action for copyright infringement when you have not obtained a copyright registration for your works and have to prove to a court that you actually created your own work.

Additionally, there are advantages in case you are faced with litigation. For example, if you are forced into litigation to protect your copyright rights, a court may award significant damages for copyright infringement, including statutory damages of up to $150,000, and reimbursement for your attorney’s fees and costs for the infringement of your copyright rights.  However, under U.S. Copyright Laws, you obtain a copyright to your works the moment your works are created and registration is not required to maintain a cause of action for trademark infringement.  If your copyright is not registered, you will need to prove actual damages, as opposed to the presumed statutory damages provided for works protected by a registered copyright.

Even if your website is not registered, your content is still protected under U.S. Copyright Laws and you can maintain an action for Internet copyright infringement. As you Internet copyright infringement attorney, we understand Internet copyright laws,  U.S. Copyright Act, the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and the application of copyright laws to Internet copyright matters.

Internet Privacy

Internet Privacy

In the Internet age, the right to privacy has taken many twists and turns. Some states have enacted statutes criminalizing computer invasion of privacy.

In a worldwide market, how can the protections against the appropriation of name and likeness, online defamation, intrusion into seclusion, false light in the public eye, and public disclosure of private facts be preserved?  In fact, can you comfortably say that as you read this page there is no spyware program which is lodged deep within your system tracking your every move? Internet privacy is a complex legal area and requires the knowledge that our Internet privacy attorneys can provide.

As an example, take email privacy at your place of employment:

Some courts have held that Your employer can lie to you about reading your emails… and then fire you for relying on these lies! Most employees probably know that the emails sent from their work email accounts are probably being monitored.

However, what if your employer repeatedly assures you that all e-mail communications would remain confidential and privileged? What if your employer tells you that e-mail communications could not be intercepted and used against you as grounds for termination or reprimand? Can your employer still intercept your emails, read them, and then fire you for the contents…? The answer may surprise you… and make you realize that the assistance of an Internet Law attorney is paramount.

In Smyth v. Pillsbury Co., 914 F. Supp. 97 (1996), Pillsbury maintained a company e-mail system which the employees used to communicate among themselves. Mr. Smyth was an employee of Pillsbury. Pillsbury assured Mr. Smyth as well as the other employees that all e-mail communications would remain confidential and privileged and that the e-mail communications could not be intercepted and used against the employees as grounds for termination or reprimand. The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania surprisingly held that despite the assurances made by Pillsbury, its employees did not have a “reasonable expectation of privacy in e-mail communications voluntarily made by an employee to his supervisor over the company e-mail system.” The Court went on to hold that no “reasonable person would consider the . . . interception of these communications to be a substantial and highly offensive invasion of his privacy.”

The Pillsbury case, although decided under Pennsylvania law and dating back to 1996, has been cited with approval by courts in other states, including Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New York, Oregon, and Texas.

Contact Us For a Free Internet Law Consultation