Posts tagged ‘Law’

New FTC Guidelines for Bloggers, Others

December 1st, 2009

Today — December 1 —  new Federal Trade Commission guidelines for endorsements and testimonials went into effect — guidelines that apply to bloggers and others who endorse products and get paid for it, ie through affiliate links.  The guidelines are broad but it’s basically all about disclosure and being honest. While officially you should seek your own counsel, here is a link that lists a variety of reactions and opinions to the guidelines. Our opinion — and it’s just an non-legal opinion of course — is that if you practice disclosure and you’re honest about why you are recommending a product, you won’t be a target.  See our Disclosure Statement in our “About” Page.

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Internet “Pirate Bay” Founders Sentenced to Jail (Update)

April 20th, 2009

The founders of Pirate Bay, a file-swapping site are headed for jail, in what could be the beginning of increased prosecutions: “Lawyers believe that the sentencing of Peter Sunde, Gottfrid Svartholm Warg, Fredrik Neij and Carl Lundström to a year in jail for breaching Swedish copyright law could lead to a flurry of similar lawsuits as Hollywood and  the music industry battles to regain the upper hand in the war against file sharing.” These prosecutions are going after those who provide the channel for others who are swapping copyrighted material.

UPDATE: The lawyer for the defendants is demanding a retrial after it was revealed the judge in the case belongs to Swedish “copyright groups.”

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South Korea Goes After Blogger; And in Iran, Blogger Dead

April 13th, 2009

It’s getting to be a dangerous world out there for bloggers. A South Korean blogger who was arrested in January faces up to 18-months in jail. A verdict is expected April 20th. The blogger — known as “Minerva” — has been a fierce critic of that country’s economic policies. He became famous after several of his predictions came true, including the collapse of Lehman Brothers. Full story here.

In Iran, where blogging has become a major outlet of opinion and dissent, a blogger has died in prison, after being jailed for violating what the regime had called crimes against Islamic law.

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“FCC Studies Goal of National Affordable, Fast Internet”

April 8th, 2009
As USA Today reports: “The Federal Communications Commission Wednesday begins work on a national broadband plan, with the goal of ensuring that all consumers have access to services that are fast and affordable.” Story here.
This is essential infrastructure for any nation today. A good comparison is the United States’ interstate highway system, which was authorized in 1956. Imagine us today without interstate highways or freeways, trying to cross the country on an endless number of unorganized and independent roads. Do you know the #1-ranked country with broadband penetration ? Bermuda. The U.S. is #19, Japan #22. Check it out in this  amazing video. MySpace has 200 million registered users — if it was a country, it would be the 5th largest in the world (between Indonesia and Brazil).

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Bloggers, Others Could Be Sued Under New Regulations

April 3rd, 2009

The Financial Times is reporting:

Revised guidelines on endorsements and testimonials by the Federal Trade Commission, now under review and expected to be adopted, would hold companies liable for untruthful statements made by bloggers and users of social networking sites who receive samples of their products.”

“If a blogger received a free sample of skin lotion and then incorrectly claimed the product cured eczema, the FTC could sue the company for making false or unsubstantiated statements. The blogger could be sued for making false representations.”

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Extortion Plot on Dating Site

March 30th, 2009

Robert Frank reports on his always fascinating The Wealth Report that a wealthy gentleman from Connecticut was extorted out of $100,000 by a potential match he met through Sugardaddies.com, a young woman — and her 29-year-old husband.

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Craigslist Prostitution Task Force in New York

March 22nd, 2009

Police in Westchester County, NY are the latest to go after Craigslist advertisers/clients of the “oldest profession” — they’ve made over 100 arrests. Most recently, they arrested a husband and wife who were allegedly running a bordello in their quiet neighborhood home.

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Sheriff Sues Craigslist Over Sex Ads (Updated)

March 6th, 2009

The sheriff of Cook County, IL says Craigslist is “a public nuisance” and wants a federal judge to shut down the “erotic services’ section. And he wants $100,000 to reimburse his department for investigating the website. The sheriff is not the first law enforcement official to go after Craigslist, which is often in the bullseye for its size (Craigslist is the #9 most popular website).

Brook Meeks, spokesperson for the Center for Democracy and Technology stated: “Craigslist is providing an interactive computer service, and as such is protected under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. This provision essentially says that a service like Craigslist can’t be treated as a publisher or speaker of any information put there by a user. So Craigslist isn’t responsible for the content that users put on its site. That said, Craigslist has worked with law enforcement and toughened up the procedures — requir(ing) (a)  name and valid credit card — for putting erotic ads online.” Here’s the full story.

UPDATE: WE RECEIVED A QUESTION ON THIS: “Where’s this county located?”

This is the county Chicago is located in.

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