Internet On Trial

Internet On Trial

Modern Day Litigation, Cyber Defamation, and Law in Sports & Entertainment

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Own a gun? Hope you like jail.

Posted in New Jersey, Privacy Law

For all intents and purposes, it’s a crime just to have or possess a gun in the state of New Jersey—unless you’re in your own home—and with new rules just announced by the New Jersey judiciary, people charged with gun-related crimes now will go to jail immediately, denied bail, and the presumption of innocence until proven… Continue Reading

What is the “single publication rule,” and why should you care?

Posted in Cyber-defamation, Defamation, First Amendment, New Jersey, Ohio

  You’ve probably heard the term statute of limitations before, and you might even know what it is — the time limit for filing a lawsuit, which is established by a state legislature or Congress, and defines the absolute deadline that a suit can be filed after the occurrence of the event that gave rise to the… Continue Reading

NJ Supreme Court Limits Eligibility for Expungement

Posted in Litigation & Appeals, New Jersey

If you needed another reason not to break the law, here’s one: Last week, the New Jersey Supreme Court ruled that expungements are no longer available for individuals with multiple convictions for a “single spree” of crimes. Expungement is the process of erasing a criminal conviction from a person’s record. The way it works is, typically, after a first-time… Continue Reading

First Amendment Doesn’t Cover Jokes About Cops

Posted in First Amendment, Internet & Media Law, New Jersey, Social Media Law

The First Amendment is like that unwritten rule about the things you’re not supposed to discuss in a bar — politics and religion — because that’s what it’s really about. This is probably why the government isn’t in the bar business. Because of the First Amendment, the government can’t stop you from supporting the political candidate or issue of your… Continue Reading

Two Rules for Representing Yourself in Legal Proceedings

Posted in Litigation & Appeals, New Jersey

Everybody’s probably heard the old adage, “He who acts as his own lawyer has a fool for a client,” but apparently people either don’t believe it, or they believe they’re the exception to the rule. I say that because the percentage of “pro se” (i.e. self-represented) litigants continues to rise year after year. Why do people represent… Continue Reading

Third Circuit Will Hear GPS Tracking Case En Banc

Posted in New Jersey, Privacy Law, Technology Law

In October, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals became the highest federal court to decide that police must first have a search warrant before they can install a GPS tracking device on a vehicle. That decision came roughly a year after the U.S. Supreme Court decided that installing a GPS tracking device on a vehicle constitutes a “search”… Continue Reading

NJ Court Rules In Favor of Copyright Trolls

Posted in Computer Crimes, Copyright, New Jersey, Privacy Law

For a while, it’s seemed like the tides had turned on copyright trolls, as federal court judges appear to be more and more skeptical of the (lack of) merits to the concept and strategy behind mass copyright litigation. But a recent decision by a New Jersey federal court magistrate judge seems to send the opposite message–for copyright trolls not to give up, that the courthouse doors are still very much open. At least that’s the message I inferred from the headline in the New Jersey Law Journal “Multiple John Doe Defendants Permitted in BitTorrent Case” (subscription required).… Continue Reading

Did Rutgers Make a Mistake in Firing Head Basketball Coach?

Posted in New Jersey, Sports

Regardless of whether Rice’s behavior was cause for termination, it looks as though he was punished twice for the same conduct. Again, the video footage was filmed during the coach’s first two seasons at Rutgers, between 2010 and 2012. In December, AD Tim Pernetti suspended Rice for three games, and fined him $50,000. Since then, there have been no new reports or allegations of misconduct by the coach. So, in essence, he was fired for the same thing for which he was previously suspended and fined. In constitutional law, that’s called double jeopardy…… Continue Reading

Jersey Boys’ Use of Ed Sullivan Show Clip is ‘Fair Use’

Posted in Copyright, Entertainment Law, New Jersey

The penalties for copyright & trademark infringement can be substantial, even crippling. Don’t ever assume that you can borrow someone else’s material based on the fair use doctrine. Before you “borrow” something for your movie, song, advertisement, website, blog, photograph, etc., speak to an attorney who is familiar with the fair use doctrine.… Continue Reading

Jets Linebacker Seeking PTI Probation for Assault on His Wife

Posted in New Jersey, Sports

New York Jets linebacker Bryan Thomas is asking the Morris County Prosecutor to accept him into “pre-trial intervention,” which is a New Jersey courts diversionary program for first-time offenders. The 6’4″ 265-pound linebacker is facing criminal charges of aggravated assault and possession of controlled dangerous substances following a domestic incident last October during which he allegedly punched his wife in the stomach.… Continue Reading

Hurricane Sandy Knocked Out NJ Courts for an Entire Week

Posted in New Jersey

Since I’m a volunteer firefighter, I was on duty and responding to emergencies all day Monday and Tuesday. I got to come home yesterday, and since then I’ve been spending time with my family. Today I started reaching out to clients, individually, to let them know that we’re here and available to help if needed. If I haven’t connected with you yet, you should expect to hear from me by tomorrow/Friday, when I plan on being in the office for most if not all of the day.… Continue Reading

Fuhgeddaboudit! NCAA, NFL, NBA, MLB File Suit Against the State of New Jersey

Posted in New Jersey, Sports

The NCAA and the big four professional sports leagues filed a lawsuit against New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, alleging that the state law that was approved by NJ voters last November is a “clear and flagrant violation of federal law.” The five sports organizations are asking a federal court in Trenton, New Jersey for preliminary and permanent injunctions against NJ officials, to enjoin them from carrying out the law that authorizes sports betting in New Jersey. Perhaps the most compelling reason that New Jersey will prevail is that courts don’t hand out injunctions like Roger Goodell hands out fines and suspensions.… Continue Reading

Why Dharun Ravi Will Not Go Back To Jail: Steven Altman Might Be Even More Brilliant Than His Reputation

Posted in Computer Crimes, New Jersey, Privacy Law

Earlier this week, Dharun Ravi walked out of the Middlesex County jail a free man…at least for now, if you believe the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office, which is challenging the trial court’s 30-day sentence in the Appellate Division of the NJ Superior Court.  I’ve been writing about this seemingly epic story since Ravi was indicted not because… Continue Reading

Winter Classic Spawns More Litigation

Posted in New Jersey, Sports

You might remember the story about the Woodbridge, NJ cop, and New York Rangers fan, who was badly beaten outside of Geno’s Steaks in South Philly. The beating came on the heels of the 2012 Winter Classic, which is an annual, regular-season NHL hockey game that is played outdoors. This year’s installment featured the New… Continue Reading

The Irony of Technology: Takeaways From #ABATECHSHOW 2012

Posted in Internet & Media Law, New Jersey, Technology Law

I’m writing this from my Chicago hotel room after just getting back from the final session at ABA TechShow® 2012, where I spent the past three days learning about, seeing, and trying the latest and greatest technology tools for practicing law. Ironically, despite the myriad gadgets and tech toys from literally all over the world, the best… Continue Reading

The Ravi Verdict: Justice Served or Society’s Price of Political Correctness

Posted in Computer Crimes, Internet & Media Law, New Jersey, Privacy Law

I don’t know what Dan Abrams, Nancy Grace, and Mark Geragos were saying about the Dharun Ravi trial, and I didn’t need to know, because I was there. Granted I didn’t see the whole trial from opening statements to closing arguments, but I did see direct and cross-examination of most of the key witnesses, I… Continue Reading