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Category Archives: Courts

In Court, Facebook Blames Users for Destroying Their Own Right to Privacy

The Intercept: “In April 2018, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg sat before members of both houses of Congress and told them his company respected the privacy of the roughly two billion people who use it. “Privacy” remained largely undefined throughout Zuckerberg’s televised flagellations, but he mentioned the concept more than two dozen times, including when he told the Senate’s Judiciary and Commerce committees, “We have a broader responsibility to protect people’s privacy even beyond” a consent decree from federal privacy regulators, and when he told the House Energy and Commerce Committee, “We believe that everyone around the world deserves good privacy controls.” A year later, Zuckerberg claimed in interviews and essays to have discovered the religion of personal privacy and vowed to rebuild the company in its image.

But only months after Zuckerberg first outlined his “privacy-focused vision for social networking” in a 3,000-word post on the social network he founded, his lawyers were explaining to a California judge that privacy on Facebook is nonexistent. The courtroom debate, first reported by Law360, took place as Facebook tried to scuttle litigation from users upset that their personal data was shared without their knowledge with the consultancy Cambridge Analytica and later with advisers to Donald Trump’s campaign. The full transcript of the proceedings — which has been quoted from only briefly — reveal one of the most stunning examples of corporate doublespeak certainly in Facebook’s history.”..

Federal judge tosses suit seeking to stop Obama center in Jackson Park

Chicago Tribune – “In a major defeat for opponents, a federal judge ruled Tuesday that the city of Chicago was within its authority when it approved the Obama Foundation’s plan to build the Obama Presidential Center on publicly owned property in Jackson Park. The center “surely provides a multitude of benefits to the public. It… Continue Reading

Citation Stickiness

Bennardo, Kevin and Chew, Alexa, Citation Stickiness (April 19, 2019). 20 Journal of Appellate Practice & Process, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3375050 – “This Article is an empirical study of what we call citation stickiness. A citation is sticky if it appears in one of the parties’ briefs and then again in the court’s opinion.… Continue Reading

Federal Weapons Prosecutions Continue to Climb in 2019

“According to the case-by-case information analyzed by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) at Syracuse University, two out of every three prosecutions were for the offense of unlawful shipment, transfer, receipt, or possession of a firearm by a felon. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) was the lead investigative agency for 63.5… Continue Reading

France Bans Judge Analytics, 5 Years In Prison For Rule Breakers

Artificial Lawyer – “In a startling intervention that seeks to limit the emerging litigation analytics and prediction sector, the French Government has banned the publication of statistical information about judges’ decisions – with a five year prison sentence set as the maximum punishment for anyone who breaks the new law. Owners of legal tech companies… Continue Reading

Justice Department Clarifies Redactions To Mueller Report

The US government pushed back on a lawsuit by BuzzFeed News that seeks the Mueller report in its entirety: “The Department of Justice told a federal court judge that it cannot disclose any redacted parts of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report without harming ongoing national security investigations and other sensitive matters. BuzzFeed News and the… Continue Reading

Enforcing Federal Privacy Law – Constitutional Limitations on Private Rights of Action

CRS Legal Sidebar – Enforcing Federal Privacy Law—Constitutional Limitations on Private Rights of Action, May 31, 2019: “Over the last two years, the prospect of a comprehensive federal data privacy law has been the subject of considerable attention in the press and in Congress. Some Members of Congress and outside groups have developed many proposals… Continue Reading

Facebook reportedly thinks there’s no ‘expectation of privacy’ on social media

cnet – The social network wants to dismiss a lawsuit stemming from the Cambridge Analytica scandal. “Facebook on Wednesday [May 28, 2019]reportedly argued that it didn’t violate users’ privacy rights because there’s no expectation of privacy when using social media. “There is no invasion of privacy at all, because there is no privacy,” Facebook counsel… Continue Reading

How Often Has the U.S. Supreme Court Struck Down a Federal Law? Part II

More often than you might think – Keith Whittington |The Volokh Conspiracy: “As I noted last week, there once was a robust political and scholarly debate over the answer to the question of how often the U.S. Supreme Court had struck down a provision of a federal statute. The question was thought to matter because… Continue Reading

The Indian Law That Helps Build Walls

The Supreme Court’s legal abuse of Native Americans set the stage for America’s poor treatment of many of its vulnerable populations. By Maggie Blackhawk. Ms. Blackhawk is an assistant professor of law at the University of Pennsylvania. “The first two years of the Trump administration have brought us horror story after horror story about our… Continue Reading

Burgeoning Workloads for Immigration Judges Inbox x

“The hiring pace for new judges continues to be insufficient to keep up with the Immigration Court’s workload. As a result, the court’s backlog continues to climb – up 65 percent since President Trump assumed office. A total of only 424 judges face a backlog of 892,517 cases on the courts’ active dockets as of… Continue Reading

PBS Frontline – Supreme Revenge

Season 37: Episode 14 – “Inside the no-holds-barred war for control of the Supreme Court. From Brett Kavanaugh to Robert Bork, an investigation of how a 30-year-old grievance transformed the court and turned confirmations into bitter, partisan conflicts.” See also Law.com [subscription req’d] – New Documentary Examines Supreme Court Confirmations From Bork to Kavanaugh. “The… Continue Reading