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Monthly Archives from February 2023

DMCA Abuse & How Anonymity Protects Free Expression

Have you ever been served a DMCA Takedown Notice? This legal tool was created by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act in 1998 to protect intellectual property on the internet. But decades down the road, we’ve seen that some internet users experience DMCA abuse – tactics that chill speech or uncover anonymous speech, which is protected by the first amendment. One notable case came up against the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, a Jehovah’s Witness group.  […]

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Is Abortion Speech Protected by the First Amendment?

We know that the Supreme Court overturning of Roe v. Wade affects abortion rights throughout the nation. But is abortion speech protected by the First Amendment even if it’s banned in certain states? The new state-by-state nature of abortion law  is what renders speech a complex issue – especially since some laws mention “aiding and abetting” abortion. If someone advises a person on how to have a legal abortion in a state where it’s illegal […]

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Patent Illustration Renderings Show Possible Next Generation Toyota Tacoma

A new design for what may be the next Toyota Tacoma has surfaced recently from the springboard of a patent filed in Brazil. Some clever person on the internet created patent illustration renderings from the filing’s detailed drawings (as many good patent applications must contain).  The renderings were initially proliferated by the website Motor1, and they have spread throughout auto enthusiast news sites. Nuts & Bolts, Grilles & Vents Calling the images “next generation Toyota […]

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First Amendment Complications of AZ HB2319: Restricting Filming of Police

Even though case law is well settled, the debate over the filming of police as a First Amendment right continues. The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals recently reinstated a lawsuit, ruling that civilian videos of police are protected by the constitution: “[The plaintiff’s] right to film the police falls squarely within the First Amendment’s core purposes to protect free and robust discussion of public affairs, hold government officials accountable, and check abuse of power.” Meanwhile, […]

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When Government Officials Use Private Texts and Emails

Are you allowed to read the private texts and emails of public officials? Absolutely, if they count as public records. With the advent of smartphones and laptops, personal devices have become entangled with official communications, and government devices have become entangled with personal communications.  Many state public records laws have acted to keep up with this change. Florida law, for instance, says private communications on government devices are not public records, but official communications on […]

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What Is the Protecting Intellectual Property Act?

At the beginning of this year, President Biden signed the Protecting American Intellectual Property Act into law. We already have laws protecting intellectual property assets, as well as measures to punish those who flout those laws: civil lawsuits, the U.S. restricted parties list, and criminal prosecution. So what, exactly, is the point of this new act? Specifically, the Protecting American Intellectual Property Act is designed to make foreign actors think twice about stealing U.S. trade […]

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