CLIP-ings: November 6, 2020

Internet Governance

California Voters Pass Proposition 22 To Keep Rideshare Drivers As Independent Contractors: After the most expensive campaign in state history, Californians voted to create an app-based-delivery-company exception to a labor law passed last year that otherwise would have required companies such as Uber and Lyft to classify their California drivers as employees instead of independent contractors.

European Union Regulatory Proposals Would Require Internet Platforms To Open Up Their Algorithms To Oversight: Concerned about discrimination, the amplification of bias, and abusive targeting of vulnerable individuals and groups as a result of algorithmic decisionmaking, the proposals ask for more accountability and transparency around algorithms, particularly those from the most powerful internet platforms; lawmakers also seek increased user control, increased regulator access to data, and more information for users regarding ad targeting and greater reporting requirements for content moderation.

Portland, Maine Passes Facial Recognition Ban: The new measure strengthens Portland’s existing ban on the use of facial recognition technology by law enforcement agencies and public officials by, among other things, allowing Portland citizens to sue the city for illegal surveillance and to receive $100 per violation or $1,000, depending on which amount is higher.

California Passes CPRA, Shores Up CCPA: The California Privacy Rights Act, which takes effect in January 2023, makes several substantive updates to the existing California Consumer Privacy Act, including clarifying what constitutes a “sale” of information, requiring disclosure of automated decisionmaking and data subject profiling, supplementing the list of protected data and creating a category of sensitive personal data, and providing for the formation of a data privacy authority to replace the state attorney general as the act’s enforcer, among other things.
Information Security and Cyberthreats

Ransomware Attacks On United States Hospitals Stem From Google Drive Documents: After several hospitals were struck by Ryuk ransomware, analysis from security firm Sophos reported that many of the attacks were delivered by a campaign of phishing emails that contain links to Google Drive documents, which, when opened, would deliver malware content onto victims’ computers.
Intellectual Property

Massachusetts Voters Overwhelmingly Support Ballot Measure Allowing Sharing Of Vehicle Telematics: Massachusetts residents voted to expand the state’s wide-reaching right-to-repair law to require carmakers to provide owners with a platform capable of accessing their vehicle’s mechanical telematic data and sharing that data with third-party repair shops and auto-part stores; the Coalition for Safe and Secure Data, which opposed the ballot measure, contends that the expansion does not significantly add to the existing law and that real-time, two-way access to vehicle data increases risk without justifiable benefit.
Free Expression & Censorship

Twitter’s Pledge To Label Misleading Tweets Could Effectively Slow Down Their Spread: After labeling one of President Trump’s tweets as constituting misleading content about the election only thirty-six minutes after it was posted, Twitter was able to quickly slow down the tweet’s overall spread as people could not easily reshare the post; according to analysis by the Election Integrity Partnership, the labeling of the tweet reduced the rate of retweets from 827 times per minute to 151 times per minute.

YouTube Took Down Multiple Livestreams Broadcasting Fake Election Results: Before polls closed anywhere in the country on Election Day, YouTube removed livestreams that broadcasted fake election results videos; similarly, TikTok deleted videos from two popular pro-Trump accounts that promoted election misinformation, including allegations that Democrats have plotted to steal the election.
Practice Note

Plaintiff’s Win Preliminary Injunction Against TikTok Ban Set To Go Into Effect November 12th: Three TikTok creators who had previously failed to sustain an argument that their livelihoods would be irreparably harmed by the Trump administration’s decision to ban the social media app successfully obtained the preliminary injunction from a Pennsylvania federal judge, who agreed with the plaintiffs that their content constitutes “informational materials,” a protected category under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, the statutory authority under which the ban was invoked.
On the Lighter Side

Ball-Tracking, AI-Powered Camera Mistakenly Tracks Soccer Referee’s Bald Head Instead Of The Actual Soccer Ball: As part of the Scottish Inverness Caledonian Thistle FC soccer club’s initiative to increase social distancing by live-streaming its home games, the club replaced human camera operators with an AI camera system to better track the action on the field; however, instead of tracking the soccer ball, the AI system focused on the referee’s bald head for most of the game.
Joel R. Reidenberg
Stanley D. and Nikki Waxberg Chair and Professor of Law
Founding Academic Director, Fordham CLIP

Tom Norton
Executive Director, Fordham CLIP

Erica Chan
Daniel Gerken
Editorial Fellows, Fordham CLIP