Mega.co.nz removed Defense Distributed's 3D gun design files from the cloud while export regulations and other laws are being evaluated by the United States and others. Mega decided under the circumstances, given the potential security risks to society, the prudent thing to do was to err on the side of caution and remove the files. News story from Computerworld here.
Bloomberg Interview with Ira P. Rothken on the Megaupload/Kim Dotcom case discussing Court Order finding illegal government conduct
Read what Steve Wozniak thinks about Kim Dotcom and the Megaupload case in this CNET News.com article
Our firm emphasizes intellectual property litigation (including trademarks, trade secrets, copyrights, and patents), internet law, complex business litigation, class actions, videogame law, business law, employment litigation, consumer protection litigation, and personal injury/tort litigation. We are actively involved in cutting edge electronic discovery ("e-discovery") matters and Ira P. Rothken is an active member of the Sedona Conference and maintains a blog at Moredata.com on electronic discovery and evidence issues for legal professionals. Here is a CNET News Story Profiling Ira P. Rothken's Career Protecting Internet Technology Companies.
We Have Assisted in the Startup of Some of the Most Successful E-Commerce and Electronic Entertainment Companies in the World
In addition to our robust litigation practice as evidenced in our "News" section below we assist electronic entertainment, high technology, and e-commerce companies in their business and legal transactions. For example, since the inception of the "commercialized" internet in the mid 1990s, we have represented some of the largest and most successful web sites in the world on a huge range of matters from startup issues to risk reduction strategies to e-commerce policies and agreements. In many instances we were called upon to handle issues where there was no clear precedent and thus we had to innovate a solution. We have also helped start numerous successful electronic entertainment and videogame companies including Nihilistic Software, Pandemic Games, Telltale, and Arenanet. Ira P. Rothken, a member of IGDA, has spoken multiple times on how to start a videogame development company at the Computer Game Developers Conference (CGDC).
Profile Technology Ltd Files Complaint Against Facebook for Unfair, Illegal, and Deceptive Business Practices
Profile Technology Ltd today filed a lawsuit in Superior Court in California alleging that Facebook acted illegally by terminating a 2008 custom agreement that gave Profile's search engine and social networking site access to public Facebook data. The complaint further alleges that when Profile resisted Facebook demands for a lopsided new agreement Facebook retaliated against Profile by turning off Profile apps and spreading misinformation causing significant injury to Profile. The complaint asks for damages and injunctive relief according to proof and can be found here.
Portions of Mr. Rothken's statements below have been taken from an ArsTechnica interview you can read here.
Megaupload's attorney Ira P. Rothken has a succinct description of the US government case against his client: "wrong on the facts and wrong on the law."
In Mr. Rothken's words, the government is acting over-aggressively and overbroadly by taking down one of the world's largest cloud storage services "without any notice or chance for Megaupload to be heard in a court of law." The result ignores substantial non infringing uses of cloud storage and is both "offensive to the rights of Megaupload and to the rights of millions of consumers worldwide" who stored personal data with the service.
Indeed, in Mr. Rothken's view, attempting to hold a cloud storage provider criminally responsible for the acts of its users is known as "secondary" criminal copyright liability and there no such statutory claim under US Law. Secondary copyright liability is judge made law in "civil" cases, such as Grokster, and such theories are not "criminal" in nature.
Instead, the government's willingness to pursue the case as an international racketeering charge meant "essentially only sticking up for one side of the copyright vs. technology debate." The result, Rothken says, is "terrible chilling effect it's having on Internet innovators" who feature cloud storage components to their business.
This sort of thing makes Rothken furious. Using "James Bond tactics with helicopters and weaponry, and breaking into homes over what is apparently a philosophical debate over the balance between copyright protection and the freedom to innovate, are heavy-handed tactics, are over-aggressive, and have a detrimental effect on society as a whole," he said. In addition, the raid was a reminder that bills like the Stop Online Piracy Act "ought not to ever be passed, because these tactics [the helicopters, etc.] are so offensive that if you take the shackles off of government, it may lead to more abuse, more aggression."
Rothken also suggested that the timing of the raid was suspicious; "over a two-year period, they happened to pick the one week where SOPA started going south."
For now, the case remains in New Zealand, where questions of bail and then extradition are being handled by local courts. Though the entire case could take a long while to wind its way to completion, Rothken concludes, "Megaupload believes strongly it's going to prevail."
Megaupload filed a motion for a TRO and Preliminary Injunction against UMG today to ask the Federal Court to stop UMG's allegedly abusive DMCA takedown notices of the Megaupload Video. Here is the TRO motion and the declaration in support of the motion.
Update: Here is a CNET News story
Update: Here is Megaupload's reply brief
Megaupload Ltd, a leading internet cloud storage company, filed a lawsuit in the Northern District of California, to stop Universal Music Group (UMG) from sending alleged sham DMCA notices to YouTube and others. The Complaint alleges that UMG sent DMCA notices to YouTube and other similar internet services providers representing that the "Megaupload Video" was infringing on copyrights when the true facts are that the Megaupload Video was an original work owned by Megaupload.
According to the complaint the Megaupload Video includes appearances from multiple celebrities speaking or singing about Megaupload including: Will.i.am, P Diddy, Kim Kardashian, Chris Brown, Kanye West, Lil John, Jamie Foxx, Mary J Blige, Floyd Mayweather, and more. The complaint alleges that written agreements were signed by all those involved in the production or appearing in the video.
The complaint alleges that "...it appears as though UMG permits recording artists to exercise their views and free speech only when UMG agrees with such speech. The type of wrongful behavior alleged against UMG and Defendants herein is exactly the type of behavior that the DMCA Sec 512(f) was designed to remedy."
Megaupload is asking the court for injunctive relief to stop the alleged UMG misconduct and for damages according to proof. You can read a copy of the complaint here.
Rothken Law Firm Files Class Action Lawsuit Against Carrier IQ Regarding Alleged Cell Phone Data Privacy Intrusion
The Rothken Law Firm on behalf of an alleged nationwide class of consumers is suing Carrier IQ over the alleged installation of hidden software on select mobile phones that siphon off data without sufficient consumer notice and consent. The Federal lawsuit requests monetary damages and injunctive relief. If you believe you have been adversely impacted you may submit information via our Contact Us form to assist in our investigation. Read CNET news coverage of the Carrier IQ controversy.
New Booz Research Report Shows That Copyright Centric Regulation Chills Investments In High Technology Startups
The well known management consulting firm of Booz & Co. published a research report today that tends to demonstrate that Copyright centric regulations like SOPA/PROTECT IP have a chilling effect on angel and venture capital investment in high technology startups.
More than 70% of angel investors reported they would be deterred from investing in high technology companies if anti-piracy regulations against “user uploaded” websites were increased.
The Rothken Law Firm did assist Booz in the study as indicated in the report.
You can read the Booz report here.
According to the Forbes story:
"It’s a slap in the face to consumers already weary of the company’s practices, as they’re essentially saying they could have another privacy breaching screw-up like the hack, and you wouldn’t have recourse against them in the form of a class action lawsuit. There’s currently a lawsuit filed against Sony for the hacking breach by the Rothken law firm on behalf of the 77 million customers affected, but this does not fall under these new terms of service, and will be going forward."
You can read the entire Forbes story here.
See related story from the ABA Journal: First Lawsuit Filed Over Sony Playstation Data Breach
Citigroup said that it suffered a security breach in the bank's network impacting the data of about 200,000 credit-card holders in North America. Allegedly the bank waited more than a month before making the full extent of the breach public, drawing criticism from Regulators and lawyers.
U.S. Representative Mary Bono Mack is preparing legislation to ensure faster notification to customers, her spokesman told Reuters.
Ira Rothken, a San Francisco-based attorney who represents plaintiffs in hacking cases, said his firm is investigating whether the information compromised in the Citi breach has led to any secondary intrusions against impacted customers.
"If a bank can't keep data secure, it's going to have a chilling effect not only on the banking industry, but on ecommerce," Rothken said.
The full story from Reuters can be found here.
Last week the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral argument in the Isohunt copyright appeal against the major motion picture studios. The main issue on appeal is whether or not Isohunt, a bit-torrent search engine, could be held secondarily liable for copyright infringement under an inducement theory without proof of causation. You can listen to the oral argument below. Ira P. Rothken argued on behalf of Isohunt.
IsoHunt MPAA hearing
As we are sure you understand, given that over 70 million individuals are impacted by the Sony Playstation Network security breach or disablement, the Rothken Law Firm is receiving numerous calls and thousands of emails requesting information, offering assistance and/or providing further factual support. During this time period we urge you to continue to pay attention to directions from Sony.
In the meantime we are continuing our investigation. To assist us in this process, you may (but are not required to) fill out the intake form on our Law Firm website. This would expedite our ability to compile contacts and prepare communications in an efficient manner. Please indicate “Sony Class Action” in the subject line, then use the text box for describing your experience, including, but not limited to, whether you have suffered any fraudulent use of your credit information you attribute to the Sony data breach, and stating any specific questions you may have. Do not include sensitive information such as passwords, credit card numbers, and security questions in your communications with us - we will never ask you for such information. You will also find links to news articles regarding the case on this page including below.
There is nothing that you need to do at present to be involved with this litigation. In the event we reach a settlement with Sony or obtain a judgment on behalf of the Class, there will be a notification process supervised by the Court, at which time all potential Class members will have the opportunity to consider the terms of the settlement or judgment and decide whether he or she wishes to be included or excluded or objects to the settlement.
Please take whatever steps you deem necessary and appropriate to protect your own personal and financial information and to guard against identity theft. Some recommendations from PC WORLD include:
1. Be wary of people calling or e-mailing you asking for extra information such as your Social Security number or other personal information
2. Monitor your credit card for suspicious activity or consider canceling it and getting a new one
3. Review your online passwords to see whether you are using the same password and login ID across multiple accounts. If, for example, your PSN and e-mail logins are the same, change your e-mail address password immediately. Of course, for an extra layer of protection, you may consider changing your security questions and challenge responses on other sites.
ROTHKEN LAW FIRM ANNOUNCES FILING OF CLASS ACTION LAWSUIT AGAINST SONY FOR PLAYSTATION® NETWORK SECURITY BREACH
San Francisco, California, April 27, 2011 – The Rothken Law Firm announces that it has brought a class action lawsuit against Sony PlayStation® Network to seek a remedy for over 70 million consumers arising out of one of the largest data breaches in the history of the Internet.
According to the complaint entitled JOHNS v SONY COMPUTER ENTERTAINMENT AMERICA LLC, and SONY NETWORK ENTERTAINMENT INTERNATIONAL LLC filed on April 27th, 2011 in Federal Court in the Northern District of California, Sony acknowledged that the personal information of its PlayStation Network customers has been compromised.
The complaint alleges that Sony failed to take reasonable care to protect, encrypt, and secure the private and sensitive data of its users which led to the intrusion that caused over 70 million customers the loss of their personal and private information, including customer names, addresses, e-mail addresses, birthdays, PlayStation Network and Qriocity passwords, and user names, as well as online user handles, and possibly credit card related data. The complaint also alleges "on information and belief, members of the Class have begun to experience losses from fraudulent use of credit card information believed compromised by the security breach alleged herein."
The lawsuit seeks monetary compensation for the data loss and loss of use of the Sony PlayStation® Network, credit monitoring, and other relief according to proof.
"We bought this lawsuit on behalf of consumers to learn the full extent of Sony PlayStation® Network data security practices and the data loss and to seek a remedy for consumers. We are hopeful that Sony will take this opportunity to learn from the network vulnerabilities, provide a remedy to consumers who entrusted their sensitive data to Sony, and lead the way in data security best practices going forward" says Ira P. Rothken an attorney who filed the class action complaint.
If you are a subscriber to the Playstation Network and would like to tell us about yourself to assist in our investigation please fill out this form here.
In December 2010 the United States District Court for the Northern District of California granted preliminary approval to a class action settlement brought against T-Mobile, Microsoft, and Danger regarding allegations of Sidekick smartphone data interruption and loss arising out of an incident that occurred on or about October 2009. Class Action Notice, settlement, claims forms, and related documents can be found at the SidekickSettlement.com web site. If after reading the documents on the Sidekick Settlement website you believe you may be a class member and have further inquiries then please contact us.
Isohunt today filed its opening appellate brief to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals urging the court to provide better protection from mass copyright lawsuits to search engines, such as Isohunt, that do not store, touch, or distribute copyrighted works. "This case is about the freedom to search on the internet and whether web search engines have to preemptively censor user generated links and torrent data files or be subject to keyword filtering" says Ira P. Rothken counsel for the Isohunt defendants. Here is a news story at Techdirt and another news story on an industry site.
Update from March 1, 2011 Isohunt filed its reply brief in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals Tosses False Endorsement Claim Against Search Engine and Adult Social Networking Site
On the September 30, 2010 the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Stayart v. Yahoo et al found that the plaintiff did not have a protectable commercial interest in her name under certain sections of the Lanham Act and thus affirmed the trial court's dismissal of such claims against a major search engine and adult social networking site. The Seventh Circuit's opinion can be found here.
Class Action filed against Apple over alleged defective design of the iphone 4 antenna and related software
The Rothken Law Firm announces the filing of a class action lawsuit against Apple regarding alleged defective design of the iphone 4. The lawsuit was filed in Federal Court in the Northern District of California. The Class Action Complaint and CNET's coverage can be found here. The alleged design defects include the antenna embedded in the case, when used and handled in the normal and ordinary course, caused a degraded signal and dropped calls. In addition, software that was meant to provide the display of the strength of the mobile signal via "bars" was programmed in a defective manner. If you are interested in learning more about the Apple iphone 4 class action or want to assist in our ongoing investigation please fill out a form here to contact us.
Isohunt today filed a Notice of Appeal to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Isohunt is also filing a motion for stay of an injunction that in essence, to avoid violating the Order, requires Isohunt to filter search results using title words supplied by the motion picture industry. Isohunt believes the injunction is overbroad and is optimistic that the appellate court will provide relief. Here is an article in Wired and a post in Techdirt that discusses some of the free speech issues.
When discovery moved out of the filing cabinet and onto desktop computers and servers, it became e-discovery. Today, as the field expands beyond "traditional computers" to include cloud computing, data from smartphones, and recording devices in cars, a new era is dawning: E-Discovery 2.0. In an article Ira P. Rothken authored for California Lawyer Magazine he discusses five types of high-tech devices that are sure to test the rules of privacy, proportionality, preservation, and burden in e-discovery.
In this interview with tech news site ars technica Ira Rothken discusses why the Freedom to Search the internet is important even for a torrent file search engine accused of secondary copyright infringement under an ambiguous theory of inducement.
The Judge, at a status conference in January 2010, agreed to provide the isoHunt defendants after the injunction phase, but before the damages phase, an interlocutory appeal to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Meet Ira P. Rothken
Ira P. Rothken, founder of the Rothken Law Firm, has written for the Home Office Computing/Small Business Computing Magazine "Legal Matters" Column. Mr. Rothken has written numerous articles on protecting small businesses and the laws of "e-commerce." Mr. Rothken has appeared as a guest legal expert on television and radio including CNNfn (fax/e-mail marketing issues), CNN (internet privacy), KQED radio (computer keyboard injuries), FOX (internet gambling), NBC (internet copyright), CBS (internet privacy), CNET radio (internet copyright), KTVU Silicon Valley Business Report (software license agreements), TechTV (internet law), and Court TV (internet gambling issues and copyright litigation), and has been quoted in numerous publications including legal newsletters, newspapers (Wall Street Journal, NY Times, San Jose Mercury News, San Francisco Chronicle, Newsday), magazines, and law review articles. In addition, Mr. Rothken has spoken at numerous conferences and seminars on internet & e-commerce law including the IAEM Convention, the Computer Game Developers Conference (CGDC), the Annual Meeting of the Free Speech Coalition, the Recorder Legal Newspaper Roundtable, the Practicing Law Institute in San Francisco, California, the Sedona Conference, and the Privacy and American Business Conference in Washington, DC.