Corporate and Commercial Law Blog

Insights and legal updates from our specialist corporate lawyers.

29 May 2012

Online privacy: how to comply with the new law on cookies

On 26 May 2012 the Electronic Communications (EC Directive) Regulations 2003, which governs websites’ use of cookies in the UK, came into force. At the time of writing, very few websites are compliant.

27 April 2012

Privacy: Pornography - should we opt-in to opting out?

The suggestion by the cross-party ‘Independent Parliamentary Enquiry into Online Child Protection’ (the ‘Enquiry’) that Internet Service Providers (“ISPs”) be obliged to implement an ‘Opt-Out’ filter for adult material has been greeted enthusiastically by several news outlets; but would implementing such a proposal really do any good?

5 April 2012

Injunctions and online privacy: parliamentary proposals to censor search engines in the UK? Surely not…

The recent release of the Joint Committee on Privacy and Injunctions’ report gives an interesting indication of the future of enforcement of court orders relating to online activity. The document covers a broad range of topics but its section on ‘Online Enforcement’ is key to the technology sector.

29 March 2012

Patents: Facebook v Yahoo continued; if you can’t beat them, join them

It has been reported that Facebook has responded to Yahoo’s recent patent infringement lawsuit by purchasing a portfolio of 750 patents from IBM.

Details of the specifics of the deal are unconfirmed, but there are reports that some (if not all) of the patents relied on in Yahoo’s suit are licensed to it by IBM and that the rights to those very patents may have just been signed over to Facebook. If that is’s the case, Facebook may now be in a position to terminate the licences to Yahoo, which could effectively pull the rug out from underneath its claim. However, if infringements have already occurred, it seems unlikely that Facebook can erase the past.

29 March 2012

Defamation: Online publishers still in the dark

The Supreme Court’s recent judgement in the case of Flood v Times Newspapers Limited [2011] UKSC 11 is likely to be greeted in muted terms by both online publishers and technology lawyers.

Both groups had hoped that the judgement would clarify the legal status of allegations/implications contained in articles which remain online in their original form even after facts come to light proving that the original allegation/implication was incorrect.

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