CLIP-ings: July 12, 2019

Internet Governance

FCC Preempts San Francisco Broadband Ordinance: The Commission voted three to two to block an ordinance prohibiting building owners from denying ISPs access to a building’s existing wiring; opponents of the FCC’s proposed order criticize its potentially anticompetitive effect.


FBI, ICE Use Facial Recognition Software To Search Driver’s License Databases: Facial recognition technology-assisted searches designed to identify suspects, witnesses, and bystanders that are reportedly conducted without warrants or court orders face scrutiny following a House Homeland Security Committee hearing this week; the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board has also announced it will investigate the use of facial recognition software in aviation security.

Victim Of Electric Scooter Hit-And-Run Seeks User Data From Chicago Scooter Companies: A cyclist injured in the collision petitioned ten scooter companies for data on all riders in the area at the time of the incident; the case tests companies’ promises to protect riders’ privacy and data.

Information Security & Cyberthreats

British Airways And Marriott Face Record GDPR Fines For Data Breaches: The U.K. Information Commissioner’s Office has proposed fines on British Airways and Marriott of $230 million and $124 million, respectively, in response to data breaches discovered in 2018.

Intellectual Property

Patent Rejected For Smartphones-As-Remote Controls: The Federal Circuit upheld the PTAB’s rejection of smart home technology manufacturer Universal Electronics’ patent for connecting smartphones to televisions for use as remote controls on the basis that the invention was obvious based on a combination of earlier inventions.

Free Expression & Censorship

Federal Court Rules President Trump’s Twitter Blocking Unconstitutional: The Second Circuit affirmed a district court ruling that the President’s blocking of Twitter users amounts to an unconstitutional restriction of speech under theFirst Amendment’s public forum doctrine; the public’s right to criticize politicians online has spurred two lawsuits filed by New York politicians against Rep. Ocasio-Cortez for similar management of her official Twitter account.

Practice Note

California Senate Committee Amends Three Of Five CCPA Bills Now Pending Final Approval: Three of five business-backed bills were pushed forward with consumer-friendly amendments that, among other things, increase the transparency of employer surveillance practices and provide greater information for consumers who wish to contact online businesses regarding data use.

On the Lighter Side

Tesco Supermarkets Soon To Implement Cashierless Stores: Cameras and sensors powered by artificial intelligence will detect products selected by customers and automatically charge customers as they leave the store.  

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