CLIP-ings: June 7, 2019

Internet Governance

House Judiciary Subcommittee Pushes Antitrust Investigation Of Tech Industry: Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft, and Google will be called to testify as part of a wide-ranging probe over the tech industry’s perceived concentration and misuse of market power and the resulting impact on local journalism, consumer privacy, and market entry for startups; the hearing is being conducted in addition to three separate antitrust inquiries simultaneously pursued by the executive branch, the Justice Department, and the F.T.C.


New York Privacy Act Receives Pushback From Big Tech: A bill recently introduced by New York State senator Kevin Thomas that would create a private right of action and would require online businesses to act as “data fiduciaries” would become one of the strongest privacy laws in the country if passed.

Information Security & Cyberthreats

EU Embassy In Moscow Falls Victim To Multi-Year Cyber Attack: A leaked internal document reveals that the EU Embassy in Moscow was compromised by sophisticated cyber-attacks to its unclassified network as early as February 2017; the European External Action Service, the EU’s foreign and security policy agency, did not discover the attack until this April, shortly before the EU Parliament elections.

Intellectual Property

Uber Faces Patent Infringement Claim: A former Georgia Institute of Technology professor is suing the company for allegedly infringing his 2004 patent over a system that combines cellphones, GPS, and auto-billing technology to facilitate ridesharing; the former professor also sued Lyft last July for infringement of the same patent.

Free Expression & CensorshipS

EU Court Signals That Facebook May Be Required To Remove Content Worldwide: The European Court of Justice’s legal adviser issued an advisory opinion indicating that Facebook could be ordered to remove content that is identical or “equivalent” to content that is hateful, defamatory, or otherwise illegal; Facebook argues that the opinion, if followed, would have far-reaching implications for how states maintain sovereignty and uphold freedom of expression.

CNN And Reuters Fall Victim To Chinese Government Censorship: Upon the 30th anniversary of Beijing’s pro-democracy uprising and subsequent Tiananmen Square massacre, the Cyberspace Administration of China has blocked CNN and has pressured the financial information firm Refinitiv to block Thomson Reuters stories from its Eikon news software; the Chinese government has also denied visas to journalists who have published articles critical of the nation’s leadership.

Practice Note

D.C. Court Allows Privacy Case Against Facebook To Proceed: In a suit stemming from the Cambridge Analytica scandal, the D.C. Superior Court rejected Facebook’s argument that the court lacked jurisdiction over the company, as well as its alternative argument that the action should be stayed pending resolution of the F.T.C.’s investigation of the company and a separate class-action; the ruling allows the D.C. Attorney General to begin obtaining evidence that Facebook has violated the District’s consumer-protection and privacy laws.

On the Lighter Side

Teens’ Use Of AirDrop Confuses Unsuspecting Adults: Adults are increasingly getting caught in the crossfire of teenagers’ use of Apple’s AirDrop feature.

Joel R. Reidenberg
Stanley D. and Nikki Waxberg Chair and Professor of Law
Founding Academic Director, Fordham CLIP

Tom Norton
Executive Director, Fordham CLIP

Robert Chislett
Alison Gordon

Editorial Fellows