March, 2020

A new look at the old standard: “Force Majeure” clauses

Gordon P. Firemark

With Covid-19/Coronavirus causing cancellation of events and transactions around the globe, people are naturally looking at whether they must still perform their contractual obligations and whether they are entitled to refunds of deposits and advance payments they've made.

MLC Metadata Showdown: What’s in a Name? Your money.

Music Technology Policy

There is an unsurprising discussion going on about song titles in the metadata deliberations regarding the regulations mandating the conduct of the Mechanical Licensing Collective quango. The least surprising part of the discussion is that the services change song titles as it suits them.

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Trending Sources

Turner on Limits to Terror Speech in the UK and USA @DrIanTurner

Media Law Prof Blog

Ian Turner, University of Central Lancashire Law School, has published Limits to Terror Speech in the UK and USA: Balancing Freedom of Expression With National Security at 2 Amicus Curiae 201 (2020). Here is the abstract. Article 10(1) of the

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Keith Lee, LawyerSmack Founder, Joins Case Status as Chief Marketing Officer

Media Law

Case Status , a client communications management and marketing platform for law firms that earlier this month raised $1.5

Protecting against Cybersecurity Threats when Working from Home

New Media and Technology Law

With the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), many organizations are requiring or permitting employees to work remotely. This post is intended to remind employers and employees that in the haste to implement widespread work-from-home strategies, data security concerns cannot be forgotten.

Utilitarianism, The Coronavirus and Healthcare

Communications And Entertainment Law Blog

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Blackbeard’s Revenge!

Gordon P. Firemark

The Latest episode of my Entertainment Law podcast, Entertainment Law Update, is now available for your enjoyment. Listen here, or subscribe and download in your favorite podcast listening app. Show notes are located at www.entertainmentlawupdate.com/119.

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Chen on Free Speech, Rational Deliberation, and some Truths about Lies @SturmCOL

Media Law Prof Blog

Alan K. Chen, University of Denver Sturm College of Law, has published Free Speech, Rational Deliberation, and some Truths about Lies as University of Denver Legal Studies Research Paper No. 20-07. Here is the abstract. Could “fake news” have First

Clio Commits $1 Million To Help Legal Community Through Coronavirus Crisis

Media Law

The practice management company Clio is announcing today that it is committing $1 million to a disaster relief fund to help the legal community successfully navigate the challenges and hurdles brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Facebook Brings Suit against Mobile Marketing Firm for Siphoning User Data without Authorization

New Media and Technology Law

In continuing its push to enforce its terms and policies against developers that engage in unauthorized collection or scraping of user data, Facebook brought suit last month against mobile marketing and data analytics firm OneAudience LLC. Facebook, Inc. OneAudience LLC , No. 20-01461 (N.D.

Cuomo says possible NY quarantine 'would be chaos and mayhem'

Communications And Entertainment Law Blog

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Google’s Charm Offensive Comes to Senate IP Subcommittee

Music Technology Policy

[This is a version of a letter I sent to the Senate Subcommittee on Intellectual Property today to call attention to various discrepancies in the proposed witness list, especially the presence of the Pirate Party at a hearing at the world’s greatest deliberative body.

You Can’t Call 911: @jyunger of @MillenniumFilms Tells Senate Why Piracy is Still a Problem and How U.S. has Failed to Lead

Music Technology Policy

The most powerful testimony to legislators is not from the approved academics and it’s not from the overfed lobbyists or wealthy campaign donors.

Pandemic: Force Majeure Contracts and Insurance in the Music Business

Music Technology Policy

[ This post first appeared on MusicTech.Solutions ]. After the cancellation of SXSW, we need to think about those “force majeure” clauses that everyone skips over in contractual boilerplate. Force majeure” or the less secular “Act of God” clause is a species of the “impossibility of performance” defense to a breach of contract claim that excuses the liability of a nonperforming party.

ARW Poll Results: Facebook should pay independent artists and songwriters in cash

Music Technology Policy

It may come as a surprise but until a couple years ago, Facebook never licensed music or paid royalties. To my knowledge, Facebook paid huge payments to major labels and publishers and also made some deals with a handful of indie labels.

Quick Spend Debit Cards: If You Have A Rainy Day Fund, Guess What? It’s raining!

Music Technology Policy

US GDP is 70% consumer driven. Demand collapse is what causes depressions, real depressions. Goldman Sachs estimates that the U.S. economy could contract by 24% in the second quarter (which starts next week). Say what you want about Goldman, money is something they’re fairly good at. That is a Great Depression level of contraction. If you have any living friends or family who lived through the Great Depression, ask them how that was.

Pandemic: Digital music services should accelerate payments and liquidate any royalty minimums they are holding

Music Technology Policy

You may not have noticed, but many music services have a clause in their direct licenses that allows them to delay royalty payments if your accrued royalties are less than a certain amount, often $50. This is on top of paying quarterly in many cases (as opposed to the monthly payments required by the statutory mechanical license for example.).

Happy Birthday Michael Caine

Music Technology Policy

Isn’t your uncle Stalky a great man? Stalky & Co. by Rudyard Kipling

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Free Products and Resources for Legal Professionals During Coronavirus Crisis

Media Law

To help legal professionals who are having to work from home or make other adjustments during the coronavirus crisis, I have created a page where I will track offers of free products and services from legal technology companies and others. I have started it here: Coronavirus Resources.

Amid Pandemic, Legaler Offers Its Video Meeting Service Free to Solo/Small Firms

Media Law

To help solo and small-firm lawyers during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Australia-based company Legaler is offering its secure online video chat platform free to firms of 10 lawyers or fewer.

Legal Tech Startup Case Status Raises $1.5 Million in Seed Funding

Media Law

Case Status , a Birmingham, Ala.-based based client relationship management and marketing platform for law firms, is announcing today that it has received Series Seed II investment funding of $1.5 million from Atlanta-based venture investment firm BIP Capital.

Here Are the Top Three Winners of the Startup Alley Pitch Competition at ABA TECHSHOW

Media Law

ABA Techshow kicked off last week with the Startup Alley Pitch Competition , in which 15 companies pitched their companies in three-minute presentations in front of an audience of Techshow attendees. At the conclusion of all the pitches, the audience got to vote for their favorites.

Florida Supreme Court Asks Bar to Study Lawyer Regulation and Access to Justice

Media Law

The Florida Supreme Court has asked The Florida Bar to undertake a study of the rules governing the practice of law in order to determine whether revisions are needed to improve the delivery of legal services within that state.

Women of Legal Tech Find Strength in Numbers When Battling Imposter Syndrome

Media Law

A special guest post by legal affairs writer and editor Molly McDonough , former editor and publisher of the ABA’s flagship magazine, the ABA Journal. The last thing I expected to hear at the 2020 Women of Legal Tech Summit was this: I don’t feel like I deserve to be here.

Rocket Matter to Stage ‘Rocket Aid,’ A Charitable Virtual Conference for Lawyers

Media Law

As countless face-to-face legal conferences have been cancelled or postponed, the legal practice management company Rocket Matter has unveiled plans to hold a two-day virtual conference, with all proceeds going to charities to help people impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.

Marmor on Privacy in Social Media @CornellLaw

Media Law Prof Blog

Andrei Marmor, Cornell Law School, has published Privacy in Social Media as Cornell Legal Studies Research Paper No. 20-10. Here is the abstract. This paper is about the state of privacy in social media. Most people’s immediate concern about privacy

Green on Candidate Privacy @WMLawSchool

Media Law Prof Blog

Rebecca Green, William & Mary Law School, is publishing Candidate Privacy in the Washington Law Review. Here is the abstract. In the United States, we have long accepted that candidates for public office who have voluntarily stepped into the public

Sullivan and Tilley on Supreme Court Journalism @IowaLawSchool @LoyolaLaw

Media Law Prof Blog

Barry Sullivan, Loyola University (Chicago) School of Law, and Cristina Tilley, University of Iowa College of Law, have published Supreme Court Journalism: From Law to Spectacle? at 77 Washington & Lee Law Review 343 (2020). Here is the abstract.

PerfectIt, An ‘Eagle-Eyed Proofreader’ for Your Documents, Gets Even Better

Media Law

Four years ago, I reviewed the proofreading software PerfectIt , an add-in for Microsoft Word, writing that using it was “like having a virtual, eagle-eyed proofreader on your staff.”

Atrium, $75M Company that Vowed to ‘Revolutionize’ Law, Shuts Down

Media Law

On Jan.

Yablon on Political Advertising, Digital Platforms, and the Democratic Deficiencies of Self-Regulation @UWMadison @WisconsinLaw

Media Law Prof Blog

Robert Yablon, University of Wisconsin Law School, has published Political Advertising, Digital Platforms, and the Democratic Deficiencies of Self-Regulation at 104 Minn. Headnotes 13 (2020). Here is the abstract. Amid ongoing concerns about foreign electoral interference and fake

Yuvaraj and Giblin on Whether Contracts Are Enough: An Empirical Study of Author Rights in Australian Publishing Agreements @rgibli @MelbLawSchool @MonashLawSchool

Media Law Prof Blog

Joshua Yuvaraj, Monash University Faculty of Law, and Rebecca Giblin, University of Melbourne Law School, are publishing Are contracts enough? An empirical study of author rights in Australian publishing agreements in volume 44 of Melbourne University Law Review (2020).

A Message from @TheBlakeMorgan:

Music Technology Policy

To my sisters and brothers in NYC music, and beyond…. The Irish tell the story of a man who arrives at the gates of heaven asking to be let in, and Saint Peter says, “Of course! Just show us your scars.” The man says, “But…I have no scars,” and Saint Peter answers, “What a pity. Was there nothing worth fighting for?”. We musicians are used to fighting. For our livelihoods, for our families, for our hopes and dreams, for our calling. For our profession.

Will Coronavirus Be The Tipping Point For Tech Competence In Law?

Media Law

As law firms send their staffs to work from home and courts take their proceedings online, coronavirus has caused competence in technology to rise to a new level of urgency for the legal profession. What are the implications of this for lawyers and firms?

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Two Legal Tech Companies Postpone Conferences Due To Coronavirus Concerns

Media Law

Two legal tech companies today postponed conferences they had scheduled for this month, due to concerns over the spread of coronavirus. The trademark technology company Alt Legal cancelled Alt Legal Connect 2020 , a trademark law conference which was scheduled for March 22-24 in Brooklyn, N.Y.

In Response to COVID-19 Crisis, PacerPro Offers Three Months Free Access

Media Law

PacerPro , a company that provides automated distribution of federal court filings, said today that it is offering three months of free access to its service, as a well of helping legal professionals transition to remote work.

Mostert on Free Speech and Internet Regulation @KCL_Law

Media Law Prof Blog

Frederick Mostert, King's College London, has published Free Speech and Internet Regulation at 14 Journal of Intellectual Property Law & Practice 607 (August 2019). Here is the abstract. The article analyses free speech and internet regulation. Governments have come up