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Showing posts from May, 2013

Weekend Project

After first setting out to create something along the lines of Click-That-Hood with legal information about different jurisdictions, I decided to create a slightly more robust document management system to help keep track of existing and developing legal issues related to privacy law in U.S. states and/or nationwide. As someone frequently collecting references, annotating documents, bookmarking pages, etc, I wanted to bring things together in a way that also lets me play around more in Drupal 7. I intend to add features like news/API feeds, map enhancements and maybe even calendar reminders (for when a law takes effect, for example). There are some great tools out their to do similar things but I see this potentially turning into somewhere between a reference manager, CMS and task manager. You know, because none of those have been made before :) You can take a peek at how it's coming along here.

A Bright Line in a Blurry Landscape

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The law is in a state of flux regarding the government's ability to search the contents of an arrestee's cell phone without a warrant. Should a higher standard apply given the breadth of information stored or one's expectation of privacy? Is it really that different from poking through the contents of a wallet? What if it's not password-protected?

The First Circuit recently parted ways with most other courts by announcing a very bright line rule in United States v. Wurie. The court decided that an officer's viewing of a suspect's call log after seeing "my house" calling constituted a search under the Fourth Amendment. (HT @slashdot) Without needing a password, the police looked up "my house" and matched it to a house where they later found Wurie's name on the mailbox. The police then obtained a warrant to search the property and eventually found crack, marijuana, ammunition, drug paraphernalia and more. The issue is whether the warrantle…

Appropriation FTW

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The Second Circuit recently published its decision in Cariou v. Prince, a case involving appropriation artist Richard Prince's use of photos from photographer Patrick Cariou's book Yes Rasta. Both the art and copyright communities were watching closely, with the decision having potential implications on everyone in the art food chain (collector and gallery owner Larry Gagosian is also a defendant), technology companies and others. An analysis of some of the amicus briefs can be found here. OK, let's draw some lines. Consider whether you think Prince's Graduation (right) should be considered a fair use of Cariou's original:

Now, how about James Brown Disco Ball, which takes from multiple Cariou photographs among other places:
After a detailed description of Cariou's and Prince's works, the court begins its discussion of fair use and rejects the District Court's rule:
"The law imposes no requirement that a work comment on the original or its author i…