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Category Archives: Intellectual Property

Delaware first state to legislate issue of digital assets of the deceased

FindLaw: “Delaware has moved into the digital rights vanguard by passing a law granting families the right to control a loved one’s digital assets after his or her death. According to Ars Technica, Delaware is the first U.S. state to accomplish this kind of legislation, although some states (like Idaho and Nevada) have more limited versions of digital rights for heirs. Speaking to the law’s strengths, a spokeswoman for the Delaware governor’s office noted that regardless of the location of the digital account provider (e.g., Twitter, which is based in San Francisco), if a will is governed by Delaware law, the executor would have access to those accounts. Several other states have laws dealing with email or certain social networking assets after death, but they lack a comprehensive grasp of the scope of a modern person’s so-called “digital estate.” In addition, each social media service has its own policy on what happens to a user’s account after death, leaving some to try to place these accounts in a trust. Delaware’s HB 345, the Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets and Digital Accounts Act, attempts to patch these gaps in law and policy by providing a state sanctioned procedure for requesting and gaining access to a dead loved one’s accounts. The law is set to take effect on January 1, 2015.”

Uniform Fiduciary Access To Digital Assets Act – Draft

National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws, June 14, 2014 [snipped from Draft]: “The purpose of this act is to vest fiduciaries with the authority to access, control, or copy digital assets and accounts. It is important to understand that the goal of the Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act (UFADAA) is to removeContinue Reading

Stealing Trade Secrets and Economic Espionage: An Overview of 18 U.S.C. 1831 and 1832

CRS - Stealing Trade Secrets and Economic Espionage: An Overview of 18 U.S.C. 1831 and 1832. Charles Doyle, Senior Specialist in American Public Law. July 25, 2014. “Stealing a trade secret is a federal crime when the information relates to a product in interstate or foreign commerce, 18 U.S.C. 1832 (theft of trade secrets), or when the intended beneficiaryContinue Reading

EFF Publishes New Whitepaper on the Broken Penalty System

EFF – “Today, the House Judiciary Committee [held] a hearing on “remedies” in copyright law—that is, the penalties, injunctions, and other means of challenging and penalizing alleged infringement. This is hugely important: fixing copyright’s remedy provisions (like excessive, unpredictable monetary penalties and government seizures of domain names) is key to ensuring that copyright does its job—helpingContinue Reading

Collection Directions: The Evolution of Library Collections and Collecting

“Written by Lorcan Dempsey, Constance Malpas, and Brian Lavoie, “Collection Directions: The Evolution of Library Collections and Collecting” takes a broad view of the evolution of collecting behaviors in a network environment and suggests some future directions based on various simple models. A preprint of the article is available online. In this article, the authors look at the changing dynamicsContinue Reading

The World in 2025 – 10 Predictions of Innovation

“This paper is a compilation of 10 innovation predictions for the world in 2025, based on research done by Thomson Reuters analysts using the company’s patent and scientific literature solutions. In some cases, the analysts found a growing body of work that gave additional credence to the prediction. In others, the topic was still emerging.Continue Reading

New GAO Reports – Afghanistan, Bulk Fuel Pricing, E-Health Records, Littoral Combat Ship, Software Licenses

AFGHANISTAN: Kabul Embassy Construction Costs Have Increased and Schedules Have Been Extended, GAO-14-661R: Published: Jul 8, 2014. Publicly Released: Jul 8, 2014. BULK FUEL PRICING: DOD Needs to Reevaluate Its Approach to Better Manage the Effect of Market Fluctuations, GAO-14-595: Published: Jul 8, 2014. Publicly Released: Jul 8, 2014. ELECTRONIC HEALTH RECORDS: Fiscal Year 2013 Expenditure Plan Lacks Key Information Needed toContinue Reading

Houston, We Have A Public Domain Problem – Commentary

Parker Higgins is an activist at the Electronic Frontier Foundation: “I received a bogus copyright takedown notice for using public domain audio on SoundCloud yesterday. The sound in question—the famous “Houston, we have a problem” snippet of the Apollo 13 mission—is incontrovertibly available to all, for any use, without copyright restrictions. The fact that it’sContinue Reading

New GAO Reports – Aviation Safety, Export-Import Bank, Medicare Fraud, Traffic Safety

AVIATION SAFETY: Additional Oversight Planning by FAA Could Enhance Safety Risk Management, GAO-14-516: Published: Jun 25, 2014. Publicly Released: Jun 25, 2014. EXPORT-IMPORT BANK: Status of GAO Recommendations on Risk Management, Exposure Forecasting, and Workload Issues, GAO-14-708T: Published: Jun 25, 2014. Publicly Released: Jun 25, 2014. INFORMATION SECURITY: Additional Oversight Needed to Improve Programs at Small Agencies, GAO-14-344: Published: Jun 25, 2014. Publicly Released:Continue Reading

Launch of openFDA Beta Research Project

“OpenFDA offers easy access to FDA public data and highlight projects using these data in both the public and private sector to further regulatory or scientific missions, educate the public, and save lives. OpenFDA is specifically designed to make it easier for developers, researchers, and the public to access and use the many large, important, healthContinue Reading

New GAO Reports – Federal Software Licenses, Foster Children, Freshwater

FEDERAL SOFTWARE LICENSES: Better Management Needed to Achieve Significant Savings Government-Wide, GAO-14-413: Published: May 22, 2014. Publicly Released: May 22, 2014: “The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and the vast majority of agencies that GAO reviewed do not have adequate policies for managing software licenses. While OMB has a policy on a broader information technology (IT) managementContinue Reading

Metropolitan Museum Initiative Provides Free Access to 400,000 Digital Images

“Thomas P. Campbell, Director and CEO of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, announced today that more than 400,000 high-resolution digital images of public domain works in the Museum’s world-renowned collection may be downloaded directly from the Museum’s website for non-commercial use—including in scholarly publications in any media—without permission from the Museum and without a fee.Continue Reading