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Global Media and Communications Watch The International Legal Blog for the Tech, Media and Telecoms Industry

Category Archives: Internet

Posted in Digital Single Market (EU), e-commerce, Internet, Policy & Regulation, Technology

Shaping Europe’s Digital Future – EU publishes its draft Digital Services Act

Awaited with bated breath by stakeholders in the online industry and by IP right holders alike, the EU Commission published on 15 December its official draft for the Digital Services Act (DSA). The DSA is conceived as one of the central pillars for its ambition to shape Europe’s digital future. Its published draft aims high, both in the scope of topics it covers, and the depth in which it addresses them. The DSA provides a staggered set of obligations and liability rules for all intermediaries (such as internet access providers,

Posted in Digital Single Market (EU), e-commerce, Internet, Policy & Regulation, Technology Photo of Christopher ThomasPhoto of Myrto TagaraPhoto of Alexandra Bray

DMA – a whole new world for large platform service providers?

On 15 December The European Commission published the long awaited Digital Markets Act proposal. The Proposed Regulation imposes a series of ex ante behavioural obligations on entities that the Commission designates as ‘gatekeepers’. The obligations for those designated platforms and the potential sanctions largely resemble behavioural remedies and fines that the European Commission might otherwise seek to impose under its competition law powers. The Commission’s enforcement action is expected to be intense, with ten on-site investigations per year and an additional 80 full time staff.

Posted in Intellectual Property, Internet Photo of Brendan C. Quinn

U.S. Supreme Court rejects categorical rule that generic term plus “.com” results in a generic composite

The United States Supreme Court holds that adding a top-level domain, like “.com”, to an otherwise generic term does not automatically result in a generic composite, and that a genericness determination must consider the significance of the term to consumers. The case is U.S. Patent & Trademark Office v. Booking.com B.V., U.S., No. 19-46 (2020). Booking.com – an online travel company that provides hotel and other reservation services – filed four trademark applications for the mark “Booking.com” with different visual features. The United States Patent and Trademark Office (the “PTO”)

Posted in Internet Photo of Michelle KisloffPhoto of Paul OttoPhoto of Adam Cooke

COVID-19 and IT Service Provider Contracts: A Checklist for Force Majeure Events

The COVID-19, and the various restrictions that have been implemented in response to it, are causing extraordinary business disruptions. Many organizations have had to modify their operational controls and accommodate a shift to remote working (among other adjustments). One key impact of COVID-19 involves an organization’s relationships with its IT service providers, which often play important roles in securing their data and systems. Under current conditions, some service providers may face challenges in performing this work, especially for engagements that require significant personnel resources or that require personnel to be

Posted in Internet, Internet of Things, Technology

Webinar: Internet of Things or Internet of Payments?

Making (the Internet of) Things pay? Will cars, fridges, watches, printers, and other moving and non-moving parts of the Internet of Things know value for money when they see it? At a time when the world is increasingly in need of connecting remotely, devices allowing transacting and paying remotely will be a common feature of the billions of devices that interact. Please join us our webinar, Internet of Things or Internet of Payments? We will look at the growth of connected devices, why payments are so important to this growth, and

Posted in Data Protection & Privacy, Internet, Policy & Regulation Photo of Ewa KacperekPhoto of Weronika Wolosiuk

A summary of polish legislation and of the guidelines of authorities concerning covid-19 in the context of data protection

To meet your questions and concerns related to maintaining the principles of personal data protection in the face of the global COVID-19 pandemic, we have prepared a short guide to the key legal regulations and guidelines of authorities that you should keep in mind not only when conducting business and professional activity but also in everyday life. 1.         COVID-19 Act Decisions, orders, recommendations and guidelines addressed to legal entities and entrepreneurs The Act of 2 March 2020 on special solutions related to the prevention, counteracting and combating of COVID-19, other

Posted in Internet, Policy & Regulation Photo of Peter WattsPhoto of Penny Thornton

Online Harms White Paper: UK Government publishes its consultation response

The UK Government Department for Culture, Media and Sports (DCMS) has today published its initial response to the public consultation on the Online Harms White Paper, published in April 2019.  In its response, DCMS gives an indication of how it plans to adapt the proposed regulatory framework to take account of some of the concerns raised by industry stakeholders, including the fact that is it minded to make Ofcom the new regulator and that Ofcom will be providing guidance on the companies in scope. The Online Harms White Paper, published

Posted in Internet Photo of David TaylorPhoto of Jane Seager

Czechs say no to Internationalised Domain Names, again

CZ.NIC, the Registry for the .CZ country code Top Level Domain (ccTLD), recently published the results of a survey that indicate that Czechs have once again rejected the possibility of registering Internationalised Domain Names (IDNs) under .CZ. IDNs are domain names that contain at least one non-ASCII character – for example, a character with diacritics like é, ü, ñ, or a Chinese character like 飛.  Registering IDNs is already possible in many ccTLDs such as Belgium (.BE), Brazil (.BR), China (.CN), Hong Kong (.HK), France (.FR), Germany (.DE), Greece (.GR),

Posted in Cybersecurity, Internet, Policy & Regulation, Technology

UK Government set to move forwards with regulation on consumer IoT device security

UK Government set to move forwards with regulation on consumer IoT device security The UK Government has just announced that it intends to draw up legislation aimed at ensuring that all consumer smart devices sold in the UK adhere to rigorous security requirements for the Internet of Things (“IoT“). Over the last couple of years, the Government has been considering the need to develop a robust regulatory framework governing the cybersecurity of consumer IoT devices, to ensure that these devices are sufficiently secure from cyber-threats. What will the new legislation

Posted in Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain, Copyright, Cybersecurity, Data Protection & Privacy, Intellectual Property, Internet, Policy & Regulation, Technology

A Turning Point for Tech – Global survey on digital regulation

Whilst political uncertainty may have businesses’ attention fixed, the Hogan Lovells Global Survey on Digital Regulation: ‘A Turning Point for Tech’ suggests that tech companies should be looking elsewhere. During yesterday’s launch at Hogan Lovells’ London Office, editor of the survey, Falk Schoening uncovered the 452 digital regulations that had been proposed across 16 jurisdictions in just six months of monitoring. The report aims to provide insight for what is on the horizon for tech companies, giving them a ‘heads up’ on how they should look at their business models

Posted in Internet Photo of Julia Anne Matheson

New USPTO rule: Applicants and registrants to provide email address

The USPTO’s new all-electronic processing initiative has imposed a new requirement on all applicants and registrants to update their application and registration records to provide an email address for correspondence with the office. That requirement is effective as of 5 October 2019 and applies even for applications that already identify an appointed attorney for USPTO communications. The email address will appear in the USPTO’s public records and will not be private. Accordingly, our recommendation is to provide a general contact email address rather than one associated with a particular person

Posted in Internet

U.S. government investigates potential threat to e-service providers: France’s Digital Service Tax

On 10 July 2019, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) initiated an investigation pursuant to Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974 into France’s Digital Services Tax (DST) to determine whether the tax is discriminatory or unreasonable and burdens or restricts United States commerce. Following an affirmative finding by USTR, the U.S. may take unilateral actions against imports of goods and services from France (including the imposition of a tariff or quota) or may initiate World Trade Organization (WTO) dispute settlement proceedings, among other actions. Click here

Posted in Internet, Policy & Regulation

Digital Battle in Russia: Russian Parliament will consider a Draft Law on Foreign Ownership Restrictions in Significant Internet / Information Resources in Russia

Click here for text in Russian/текст сообщения на русском языке Russia is facing potential restrictions of foreign ownership in digital companies. This follows on similar restrictions over Russian mass media companies and online cinemas which took effect in 2016 and 2017, respectively. These proposed amendments coincide with the announcement of major e-commerce and foodtech JV deals in Russia with participation of Mail.ru, the owner of Russia’s top social network VKontakte (a JV with Alibaba, Megafon and the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) as well as a JV with Sberbank). In

Posted in Cybersecurity, Internet Photo of David Taylor

Cyber Security: NCSC warns over global DNS hijacking

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), an organisation of the UK Government that provides cybersecurity advice and support for the public and private sector, published an article earlier this year relating to a recent large-scale global DNS hijacking campaign. The article discusses the risks and solutions for protecting organisations against such attacks, whereby the Domain Name System (DNS) records of websites are changed and visitors are subsequently redirected to malicious websites. In simple terms, the DNS is the service that helps internet users navigate to a domain name by correctly

Posted in Internet Photo of Laetitia ArraultPhoto of Jane Seager

Launch of brand protection service for adult oriented gTLDs

The Registry Minds + Machines Group Limited (MMX), which owns 32 new generic Top Level Domains (gTLDs) such as .VIP, .WORK or .LUXE, has recently launched a blocking service that enables trade mark holders to protect their rights across the adult namespace. This new service enables trade mark holders to block domain name registrations under the four adult oriented gTLDs XXX, .PORN, .ADULT, and .SEX that are operated by ICM Registry, which was acquired by MMX last year. According to MMX’s press release, this service allows “trademark holders to affordably

Posted in Cybersecurity, Internet, Privacy and Security Litigation Photo of Paul OttoPhoto of Allison Holt-RyanPhoto of Nathan Salminen

IoT Webinar Series: Cyberthreats in the Internet of Things

On July 16, 2019, Nathan Salminen, Allison Holt, and Paul Otto from the Hogan Lovells Privacy and Cybersecurity and Litigation teams presented a webinar, “Cyberthreats in the Internet of Things” where they explored some techniques that can be used to exploit potential vulnerabilities in connected devices and how those types of events impact organizations from a regulatory and litigation perspective. Many of the nearly 20 billion Internet of Things (IoT) devices deployed worldwide perform critical functions or have access to networks that process highly sensitive information. The proliferation of connected

Posted in Internet Photo of Eugene LowPhoto of Charmaine Kwong

China: 2-year time-bar revised to 3 years under CNDRP

Previously, under the CNNIC ccTLD Dispute Resolution Policy (CNDRP) which governs the .CN (and .中国) domain in China, no complaints under CNDRP could be filed against a .CN domain which had been registered for more than 2 years. This time bar led to debates as to whether it imposes an unreasonable time limit on the fair and equitable enforcement of intellectual property rights.  For further background to this time-bar under CNDRP, please refer to our previous post (July 2017). Time-Bar extended to 3 years As discussed in our previous post, we

Posted in Internet Photo of Jane Seager

.PL Registry lock service introduced

NASK, the organisation responsible for the Top Level Domain .PL (Poland), recently announced the introduction of a Registry Lock service for .PL domain names. Locking a domain name at the Registry level provides an added layer of security against domain name hijacking. Domain name hijacking occurs when an attacker gains unauthorised access to registration data for a domain name, thereby gaining administrative control over the domain.  This enables them to modify several elements of the domain name, including the website to which it resolves. The .PL Registry Lock service will work

Posted in Internet, Policy & Regulation Photo of Winston Maxwell

Internet of Things – A Fast Forward to the Future

On Monday, April 29th 2019, policy makers and industry representatives from different IoT ‘verticals’ (agriculture, automotive, health, energy, aerospace) gathered in Brussels at the initiative of Vodafone to launch a conversation about the future policies applicable to the Internet of Things (IoT) in Europe. Global Players Require Global Regulation      The debate emphasized how global any approach to IoT regulation should be. All participants agreed that Europe should and must be competitive on the IoT market globally. One aspect of such competitiveness may reside in the interoperability of IoT within Europe,

Posted in Internet Photo of Christelle CoslinPhoto of Pauline Faron

Hogan Lovells represents Twitter in first ever “fake news” case

London, Paris, 4 June 2019 – Hogan Lovells recently represented Twitter in the first case brought under the new French ‘fake news’ law. On 17 May a claim brought by Ms. Marie-Pierre Vieu (a European Deputy running for reelection) and Mr. Pierre Ouzoulias  (a French Senator), against Hogan Lovells client Twitter France SAS, was dismissed by the Paris Civil Court. The claim aimed to get the removal of a tweet posted by Mr. Christophe Castaner on 1 May 2019 in relation to some ‘yellow vest’ events at the Parisian hospital

Posted in Internet Photo of David TaylorPhoto of Laetitia Arrault

.CLUB launches brand protection service

.CLUB Domains, the Registry operating the .CLUB new generic Top Level Domain (gTLD), has recently launched a new service that enables qualified trade mark holders to block .CLUB domain name registrations containing their trade marks. According to the .CLUB Domains’ press release, the Trademark Sentry Unlimited Name Blocking Service (UNBS) “protects a trademark from appearing in any portion of a domain with the popular .CLUB extension – literally covering trillions of permutations of a qualified trademark. Blocked at the registry level, protected names show up as “unavailable” through any registrar’s

Posted in Cybersecurity, Internet, Policy & Regulation Photo of David Taylor

Analyzing the impact of the EU GDPR on access to WHOIS data, one year on

During the Annual INTA 2019 Meeting, a panel was held on the EU General Data Privacy Regulation (GDPR) and the temporary removal of data for the WHOIS directory. IPMT Partner David Taylor spoke on the following GDPR issues and their impact on global brand protection. When the GDPR came into force back in 2018, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) implemented a temporary policy which resulted in a majority of global registrant data being hidden from public view in the WHOIS directory. This temporary policy cannot extend beyond one year,

Posted in Cybersecurity, Data Protection & Privacy, Internet

Privacy and Cybersecurity June 2019 Events

Please join us for our June events. June 4 Privacy Breakfast Paul Otto and Tim Tobin are presenting at the Hogan Lovells Munich office’s privacy breakfast, “EU General Data Protection Regulation,” on privacy topics such as the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), cybersecurity and data breaches, and sector-specific issues found in the life sciences and health care, automotive, and financial sectors. Click here to register. Location: Munich, Germany June 25-26 National Association of College and University Attorneys Bret Cohen and Stephanie Gold are presenting at the annual conference of the National Association of College and University Attorneys on the panel, “Focus

Posted in Internet Photo of Jane SeagerPhoto of Maria Różyło

WIPO Domain Name Dispute Resolution: One Americano, please!

In a recent decision under the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) before the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), a Panel refused to order the transfer of a Domain Name because the Complainant failed to demonstrate that the Respondent registered the domain name in bad faith. This decision serves as a reminder that having a trade mark does not necessarily mean that the rights holder will succeed in obtaining the transfer of a domain name, even if it is identical to such trade mark.  The UDRP requires complainants to