Category Archives: Technology & Cyberlaw

How Can Data Privacy Regulations Limit the Ability to Present Evidence in a Litigation?

Stéphanie Martinier and Mathilde Pepin The French Supreme Court sanctions a company for having produced complete employee pay slips in a litigation. It is not news that the rules of evidence and data privacy laws may be conflicting. A recent decision of the French Supreme Court[1] illustrates this tension and highlights the need for litigators to take into account data privacy principles before producing evidence containing personal information.In this case, a company had organized mandatory staff representatives’ elections. The company had started a court action against three election candidates aiming at opposing their candidature due to certain requirements related to their job classifications not being met. Among the evidence produced by the company were the complete pay slips of the three employees. All of the trade unions that were participants in the election process were also parties to the litigation and as such, they all received copies of the evidence….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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The Fine Print in Smart Contracts

The Fine Print in Smart Contracts – Joshua S. Gans. NBER Working Paper No. 25443 Issued in January 2019. “One of the purported benefits of blockchain technologies is the ability to house what have been termed ‘smart’ contracts. Such contracts are potentially self-executing depending on the state of information recorded on a blockchain ledger. This paper examines the capabilities of smart contracts from an economic perspective. It is demonstrated that by improving observability and reducing the costs of verification of contract obligation performance, the space of feasible contracts can be enlarged. Moreover, by providing commitments to various monetary payments, a blockchain can potentially create a foundation to house certain mechanisms that have been shown to overcome difficulties of contractual incompleteness. This is demonstrated using a simple international trade environment. Thus, even though smart contracts must respect the incentives of….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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Report: DOJ pursuing criminal charges against Huawei for theft of tech

Enlarge / A Seattle jury found Huawei liable in a civil lawsuit brought by T-Mobile for theft of robotic tech. Now the DOJ is ready to file criminal charges. (credit: Getty Images) In the wake of a civil lawsuit by T-Mobile and other telecommunications companies against the Chinese networking and telecommunications company Huawei, the US Department of Justice is reportedly conducting a criminal investigation of the company. According to a Wall Street Journal report, the DOJ is close to filing an indictment against Huawei for theft of trade secrets, including the technology used in a robot developed by T-Mobile to test smartphones. The report comes a week after an employee of Huawei was arrested in Poland on espionage charges. And Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou was arrested in Canada in December based on US charges that she was responsible for violations of US sanctions against Iran. In November, the US government began ratcheting up pressure on allies to ban Huawei network….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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All the President’s Memes

The New York Times: “On the 12th day of the federal government shutdown, the 45th president of the United States of America posted a meme on his Instagram account: an image of his half-glowering, half-smirking visage, hovering gigantically above the Southwestern desert, dwarfing the picture’s centerpiece — a rendering of his signature campaign promise — and, in a familiar font, some explanatory text: “The Wall Is Coming.” It’s an image that makes you think, That’s from HBO’s hit series “Game of Thrones” — sort of, and then makes you think about the unique privileges and burdens of living in this moment in history. There are so many unusual aspects of Donald Trump’s presidency that his willingness to communicate with the public through internet memes is often overshadowed. Typically, he retweets images made by his most enthusiastic backers — in November he shared one of the Clintons, Barack….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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Paper – Correcting Biases

Sunstein, Cass R., Algorithms, Correcting Biases (December 12, 2018). Forthcoming, Social Research. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3300171 “A great deal of theoretical work explores the possibility that algorithms may be biased in one or another respect. But for purposes of law and policy, some of the most important empirical research finds exactly the opposite. In the context of bail decisions, an algorithm designed to predict flight risk does much better than human judges, in large part because the latter place an excessive emphasis on the current offense. Current Offense Bias, as we might call it, is best seen as a cousin of “availability bias,” a well-known source of mistaken probability judgments. The broader lesson is that well-designed algorithms should be able to avoid cognitive biases of many kinds. Existing research on bail decisions also casts a new light on how to think about the risk that algorithms will discriminate on the basis of….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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