Brands / Counterfeiting / Legal Contracts

From A to P: Amazon’s Third-Party Problem

With Christmas ‘only’ two months away, many of us will soon be turning to Amazon for our holiday shopping. But recently, the company has received heavy criticism regarding counterfeited items and expired food sold by third-party vendors. Speaking at the Wall Street Journal Tech Live Conference this week, one of the company’s top managers explained the company is prepared to spend billions to combat the problem. Some of us (myself included!) will remember that Amazon began as an online bookseller 25 years ago in Seattle, Washington at the height of the dot.com boom. Two years later, America’s largest bookseller Barnes &…

Free Speech / Social Media

Can the Rockets Rebound? The NBA’s Twitter Problem in China

One tweet from the general manager of an NBA team shows us how a well-intentioned post on social media can have explosive financial and political impact. It also serves as a stark reminder of internet censorship in China. Two weeks ago, the General Manager of an American basketball team found himself in the middle of an international political scandal. Daryl Morey, who has managed the Houston Rockets for over a decade, tweeted a message of support for protestors in Hong Kong. This led to a massive troll mob against Morey, and a major falling out between NBA fans in China,…

Deepfakes

Forging Authenticity: Experts’ workshop on Deepfake Technology, Risks and Governance

In September, I had the privilege of attending the Swiss Re Centre for Global Governance in Zürich, Switzerland for a two-day conference on deepfakes. The conference was hosted by the International Risk Governance Center (IRGC), whose objective is to better understand emerging and systemic risks, as well as the governance of opportunities and risks associated with new technologies.  Because the conference was subject to the Chatham House Rule and a paper from the event is forthcoming, I can’t go into too much detail. However, I thought it might be nice to set out in broad terms the topics of discussion, and…

Free Speech

Regulating the Raunchy? Free speech and obscenity under Miller v. California

One of the most interesting aspects of being a technology lawyer is that it necessarily requires a strong understanding of Internet regulation and digital rights, including the right to express yourself online.  As such, free speech is one of my favourite areas of legal history and theory.  Coincidentally, two major US Supreme Court cases regarding free speech were decided on this day —  21 June! This post takes a look at one of them: Miller v. California [1973].  In a later post, I’ll explore a second landmark free speech case decided on 21 June: Texas v. Johnson [1989]. The Constitution in Court.   Most…