November 2008 Quick Links

By Eric Goldman


* NYT: “A handful of new Web sites with names like Typo Bay and Typo Buddy are out to help shoppers save money by searching eBay for misspelled brand names.” In 2005, I blogged that typographical errors are a significant issue for eBay’s search engine.

* It’s a bull market for Obama-related trademark filings and Obama merchandise.

* Domain name tasting down 84%?

* Wired: “Think Godzilla’s Scary? Meet His Lawyers”


* Reuters: “Instead of triggering the usual take-down notices, copyright-infringing footage of select MTV Networks programing uploaded by MySpace subscribers would be automatically redistributed with advertisements that would generate revenue for the companies.” I’m interested to see how this system applies to fair uses of the works!

* Arista Records LLC v., Inc., 2008 WL 4974823 (S.D.N.Y. Nov. 24, 2008). The court dismisses’s counterclaims for declaratory relief that it doesn’t violate 17 USC 512 because the claims duplicate its affirmative defenses.

* James Grimmelmann does an excellent job parsing the Google Book Search settlement agreement and makes some sage recommendations for how it should be modified before court approval.


* The Google-Yahoo ad syndication deal is dead. Some behind-the-scenes discussions.

* I’m not sure about the implications of this, but Google is expanding its efforts to allow website and ad targeting based on automatic geographic detection. See my prior post about the future of geolocation and a bordered Internet.

* Good news: entrepreneurs want to authenticate children’s ages to keep them out of online trouble. Bad news: entrepreneurs might use age authentication to hit the kids with targeted marketing.

* sued for misrepresenting that former school chums were actually looking to reconnect. Yet more pushback on bogus “X is looking for you!” ads.

47 USC 230

* The Supreme Court denied cert in Doe v. MySpace, 2008 WL 4218722. According to Tom O’Toole, this is the seventh time that the Supreme Court has denied cert in a 47 USC 230 case.

* It appears that Children of America v. Magedson has settled.

* The Santa Clara University community is having a catharsis about Juicy Campus.

* Dan Solove and I chatted with Doug Lichtman about social networking sites (asynchronously–I spoke with Doug after Dan had), with most of my conversation focusing on 47 USC 230. Doug edited the conversations together into a one-hour podcast entitled “Privacy in the Networked World.” An added bonus for listening–you may be able to earn one hour of CLE FREE!


* Facebook v. Guerbuez. Facebook wins $873M default judgment under CAN-SPAM. Now, if Facebook could only collect any of this, they would have finally figured out a way to make money!

* Gordon v. SubscriberBASE Holdings, Inc., 2008 WL 4809833 (E.D. Wash. Oct. 31, 2008). Serial anti-spam plaintiff lost again on whether he has standing under CAN-SPAM.

* Evan Brown: Government spam filters do not deprive citizen of right to petition the government.

* Venkat: Unsolicited Marketing Extravaganza in the Ninth Circuit.


* eHarmony settles claim that it discriminates against gay singles.

* NYT: “almost five years into its expansion into Europe…Google is getting caught in a web of privacy laws that threaten its growth and the positive image it has cultivated as a company dedicated to doing good.”