The Supreme Court's recent decision in Packingham v. North Carolina struck down, as unconstitutional under the First Amendment, a state law making it a felony for registered sex offenders to access social media websites. The decision has wide-ranging potential implications for technology law, especially on matters of rights to access the internet, which are particularly important for marginalized and disenfranchised voices in our society. Below, Harold Feld reviews the Packingham decision and explores its implications for one area of law: the Digital Millennium Copyright Act's provisions regarding termination of Internet access for accused copyright infringers. This post was originally posted on Harold's personal blog, "Tales of the Sausage Factory," on wetmachine.com.
Today, Public Knowledge joins a group of consumer organizations in an amicus curiae brief to the Supreme Court in the case Impression Products v. Lexmark International. The organizations on the brief include the Electronic Frontier Foundation, AARP, Mozilla, and the R Street Institute.
Imagine a tire on a fancy Tesla, a highly technical, complex car made from myriad technological contributions and likely subject to thousands of patents. Many of those patents cover the technologies that make the car run, while others, design patents, cover only the ornamental designs. Generally, a tire's tread pattern is several straight lines that cross each other - and could be covered by a design patent. The tire itself is a small part of the final car, and the role the tread plays in the car’s value is minimal.
Today, Public Knowledge joined four other organizations in filing an amicus curiae brief with the Supreme Court in the Samsung v. Apple case. The case concerns a recent federal appellate court decision in the Apple-Samsung smartphone patent litigation. The Supreme Court will review that appellate court's holding that an infringer of a design patent must pay all profits made on the infringing product.
Today, the Supreme Court announced that it would hear arguments in the case of Star Athletica v. Varsity Brands. The case asks whether copyright may protect designs in useful articles, such as stripe patterns on cheerleader uniforms. Public Knowledge recently filed an amicus brief emphasizing the case’s potential impact on hobbyists and consumers. The International Costumers’ Guild and the Royal Manticoran Navy, two popular costuming organizations, also joined the brief.