Well, it's amazing isn't it? The month of January of 2012 is almost done and so much has already happened. Here are some interesting social media and the law news that I found, as well as some other fun pieces to carry you over for the day until tomorrow's Draw the Law.
Google and Privacy Concerns (this well continue to be an issue for 2012 for all Social Media)
Have you noticed that Goolge is making some major pushes lately? Well come March 1 the search engine plans on doing a turnabout and begin combining information it collects about the user from various sites/services into a single profile. Definitely a privacy issue brewing, especially when the privacy officer has to issue statements. Click: Google to merge user data across its services - CNN.com You can also read the lengthy notification, which you keep bypassing when you log onto your Google+ page.
GPS = 4th Amendment "Search" as Determined by SCOTUS
For all of you interested in criminal law, like Marcus Landsberg criminal lawyer extraordinaire, notice that the Supreme Court- GPS Tracking Is Illegal Without Warrant. Basically, SCOTUS feels that the use of a GPS Tracking device is a "search" for the purposes of the 4th Amendment, thus cops must get a warrant.
Mutant Toys or Mutant Dolls? Yes, it Matters
This was a great listen if you love comic books and would like to theorize that certain superheroes are not human. Basically, the point of this podcast: Mutant Rights - Radiolab, was showing the importance of the word "doll" versus "toy" - you may not think it means much, but if you are an IP attorney and have an import business getting a cheaper rate for your action figures is a must and it all boils down to if a mutant is a human or not.
Department of Homeland Security Following Facebook Posts
Earlier this month DHS released a document stating it is monitoring social media and news sites. They cited federal law that they have to "provide situational awareness" to federal, state, local and tribal governments. You can read more about this here: DHS watching social media, news sites | Greeley Gazette.
NLRB Finds Certain Arbitration Clauses Violate Labor Laws
The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has determined that mandatory arbitration agreements that prevent employees from joining together to pursue employment-related legal claims in any forum, whether in arbitration or in court violate federal labor laws. Check that announcement here: Board finds that certain mandatory arbitration agreements violate federal labor law.
Local Startup and Social Media Infromation
For you startup lovers, don't forget tomorrow night will be Startup Hawaii kickoff. For more information, check it out here: Startup America Comes to Hawaii | Aloha StartUps. It will be at Bar 35 downtown. Definitely come on down if you started or are going to start a business!
Also check back at Alohastartups.com as I will be writing some future posts talking about Hawaii's new legal non-profit aimed at helping entrepreneurs and startups, Business Law Corp. (businesslawcorps.org). I hope to get some interviews with the founders soon!
Finally, clear sometime in February as I will be getting down with Social Media and the Law as I will be trying to schedule a talk at The Greenhouse Innovation Hub and will be a panelists at Social Media Club Hawaii's Creating a social media policy for business – what, how and when? event at Amuse Wine Bar on Feb. 21st. Hope to see you there!