What's New With SESTA/FOSTA (January 17, 2018 edition)

What’s New With SESTA/FOSTA (January 17, 2018 edition)

It’s been over a month since I last blogged about SESTA, FOSTA, and Congress’ efforts to address Section 230 and sex trafficking. So it seems like a good time to do an update on recent developments. The holidays were quiet,…

Search Engines Aren’t Liable for Indexing ‘Scam’ Locksmith Listings–Baldino’s Lock v. Google

[It’s impossible to blog about Section 230 without reminding you that it remains highly imperiled.] The plaintiff in this case, Baldino’s Lock & Key, brought a very similar lawsuit in 2014. It alleged that Google indexed scam locksmiths and allowed them…

Online Marketplace Not Enjoined Over Gray Market Goods Sales–Dentsply v. Net32

Dentsply Sirona is a dental supply company. They use a chain of distributors and engage in international price discrimination (i.e., goods in the US market are priced higher than in international markets). Net32 runs an e-commerce site for dental supplies that relies…

Airbnb Gets Crucial Section 230 Win Over Unauthorized Subleases–La Park La Brea v. Airbnb

[It’s impossible to blog about Section 230 without reminding you that it remains highly imperiled.] Many of Airbnb’s short-term rental listings are illegal. For example, some listings violate local ordinances regulating short-term rentals. Also, apropos to this case, some listings constitute…

New House Bill (Substitute FOSTA) Has More Promising Approach to Regulating Online Sex Trafficking

New House Bill (Substitute FOSTA) Has More Promising Approach to Regulating Online Sex Trafficking

Tomorrow, the House Judiciary Committee will markup the Allow States and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act of 2017 (abbreviated to “FOSTA”). It appears a new substitute version of FOSTA will be marked up, not the bill as introduced. This makes a total of…

Fourth Judge Says Social Media Sites Aren’t Liable for Supporting Terrorists–Pennie v. Twitter

[It’s impossible to blog about Section 230 without reminding you that it remains highly imperiled.] This is one of the multitudinous 1-800-LAW-FIRM lawsuits against social media services for allegedly providing material support to terrorists. It has filed at least two new cases…

Social Networking Site Isn’t Liable for User’s Overdose of Drugs He Bought Via the Site–Dyroff v. Ultimate Software

[It’s impossible to blog about Section 230 without reminding you that it remains highly imperiled.] This opinion is a contender for the most interesting Section 230 ruling of 2017. It deals with the troubling situation of user-to-user online drug sales; it…

Zazzle Loses Copyright Jury Verdict, and That’s Bad News for Print-on-Demand Publishers–Greg Young Publishing v. Zazzle

Greg Young Publishing licenses images for posters, many of which are beach- or surfing-themed. Zazzle users posted item listings that included the copyrighted images. Greg Young Publishing sued Zazzle. In a prior ruling, the court held that Section 512(c) applied to…

Commemorating the 20 Year Anniversary of Zeran v. AOL

Commemorating the 20 Year Anniversary of Zeran v. AOL

You’re probably already quite familiar with the Fourth Circuit’s 1997 in Zeran v. AOL. The case is one of the most cited Internet Law cases of all time, and it is a staple of Internet Law course syllabi around the country and…

Facebook Defeats Lawsuit By User Suspended Over 'Bowling Green Massacre'--Shulman v. Facebook

Facebook Defeats Lawsuit By User Suspended Over ‘Bowling Green Massacre’–Shulman v. Facebook

This lawsuit is detritus from the KellyAnne Conway “Bowling Green Massacre” fiasco. You may recall that Conway, in her official White House role, referred to a “massacre” at Bowling Green that never happened. The plaintiff says he posted articles to Facebook allegedly…