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Trade Secrets and Algorithms as Barriers to Social Justice

Various mechanisms in the current intellectual property (IP) system balance competing interests of the rightsholders with the societal needs of the public. Unauthorized copyright use is not considered infringement if the use made is “fair,” and patents require that innovations be described in detail to receive protection in order to promote the useful arts and sciences. Moreover, these types of limitations and…

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Follow-up Comments for the FTC / NHTSA “Connected Cars – Workshop, Project No. P175403

The connected vehicle ecosystem consists of a growing network of automakers, telecom companies, telematics service providers, insurance companies, and a host of other players sprawled across disparate distribution channels. To add to an already crowded landscape, automakers are proactively harnessing partnerships with AI developers and ride-sharing companies, as well as entertainment and social media companies like Facebook that are eager to have a in-vehicle presence.

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Overview of the NetzDG Network Enforcement Law

The German parliament passed a law on 30 June that subjects social media companies and other providers that host third-party content to fines of up to €50 million if they fail to remove “obviously illegal” speech within 24 hours of it being reported. Here’s a review of the law with a focus on the free speech implications.

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Fixing Section 702 and the EU-US Privacy Shield

The E.U.-U.S. Privacy Shield agreement assists in the free flow of commerce by allowing companies to transfer data between the European Union and the United States, but it could be in jeopardy if U.S. surveillance law is not reformed. The Privacy Shield agreement was built on assurances that the U.S. would not subject Europeans’ data to “indiscriminate mass surveillance.”

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Section 702: Fixing the Backdoor Search Loophole

Although U.S. persons cannot be targeted under Section 702, their communications with non-U.S. persons can be collected and retained for years. The NSA, CIA, and FBI can query 702-acquired information using a U.S.-person identifier, without a warrant or court order. This loophole allows the government to bypass the Fourth Amendment’s protection against warrantless searches.

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