Category: EFF

Electronic Frontier Foundation Updates

I Join the EFF and Others in Calling for Craigslist to Drop CFAA Claims

Craigslist is suing several companies that scrape data from Craigslist advertisements. These companies, like Padmapper and 3taps, repurpose the data in order to provide more useful ways of searching through the ads. I have written about this in earlier posts, “Dear Craig: Voluntarily Dismiss with Prejudice,” and “A Response to Jerry: Craig Should Still Dismiss.” […]

New Boost Mobile Terms and Conditions

With the “odd” timing of the announced rules to the Boost Mobile Terms and Conditions in their Mobile voice and data contract, we saw the opportunity to make a quick comparison to find out if anything in this change provides additional information about what might be their involvement in the recently uncovered Government PRISM Program.  […]

Ladies and Gentlemen, SCO v. IBM Is Officially Reopened

The Hon. David Nuffer has ruled on the SCO v. IBM motions, granting SCO’s motion for reconsideration and reopening the case, which IBM did not object to. Judge Nuffer apologizes to the parties for the error in his previous order refusing to reopen the case. Sounds like a mensch to me. I love it when […]

The low-transaction-fee argument for Bitcoin is silly

A common argument advanced by Bitcoin proponents is that unlike banks and credit cards, Bitcoin has low (or even zero) transaction fees. The claim is a complete red herring, and in this post I’ll explain why. Let’s assume for the purposes of argument that Bitcoin transaction fees are, in fact, zero. There are small mining-related […]

On the Legal Importance of Viewing Genes as Code

The Supreme Court yesterday issued its opinion in the much–awaited Myriad case, which challenged the validity of patents on isolated human genes. The Court held that the isolated genetic sequences claimed in Myriad’s patents did not satisfy the inventive threshold for patentability, although the complementary DNA (cDNA) claimed in the patents did. One of the […]

How Consensus Drives Bitcoin

This post is the first in a series exploring our paper’s analysis of why Bitcoin works and what could derail it.

Consensus drives Bitcoin. Like any fiat currency (a currency not backed by anything of intrinsic value), Bitcoin has value because of an expectation that people will continue to accept the currency in payment. Like Tinkerbell, who exists because you believe in her, Bitcoin has value because enough people believe it has value. This much is true for all fiat currencies.

Naturally Occurring Human Genes Not Patentable – Myriad Loses – Our Genes Belong to Us

Here [PDF] it is! The opinion in Association for Molecular Pathology v. Myriad Genetics, Inc. striking down patents on naturally occurring human genes, even if they’ve been isolated. It was unanimous! I have done it as text for you. From the opinion: … Myriad did not create anything. To be sure, it found an important […]

Amicus Brief of Intellectual Property Law Professors in Support of Google and Affirmance ~pj

Bit by bit, the amicus briefs on behalf of Google in the Oracle v. Google appeal about the uncopyrightability of Java APIs are becoming available. They are all interesting in different ways, but they all agree — Oracle is wrong on the law and if it prevails, it will be a sad day for innovation. […]

Microsoft’s Amicus Brief in Support of Apple in Appeal of Posner Ruling – A Change in Tune on Injunctions

Microsoft has now filed an amicus brief in support of Apple in the appeal of Judge Richard Posner’s ruling in which the judge tossed out both Apple and Motorola’s claims with prejudice, saying neither had proven damages and saying injunctive relief when there was no demonstrable harm would be against the public interest. Interestingly, Microsoft […]