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Gamustra: Seven Steps to Improved Security - Published Article -  05/02/2012

By Gary A. Kibel and S. Gregory Boyd

While privacy and data security are hot topics everywhere these days, they are of particular interest to the game industry. Vast quantities of consumer data are generated every day in the game industry, including through consoles, websites, and mobile devices. Data can be a significant asset in that it provides valuable insight into a consumer’s behavior which can be used to improve games and target messages and offerings. However, data can also be a liability.

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The National Law Journal 2012 Midsize Hot List: When it Comes to Marketing, They Go Way Back - Published Article -  04/30/2012

By: Bob Stigle

Midsize and mighty. Oh, and venerable. All of the above apply to Davis & Gilbert, which opened in 1906. The firm's 114 lawyers specialize in the law attending marketing and advertising for clients including Discover Financial Services and Nissan North America.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> Groupon Settles "Expiration Date" Claims for $8.5 Million - Alert -  04/12/2012

E-commerce company Groupon, Inc. has agreed to pay $8.5 million to settle over a dozen lawsuits alleging that it violated federal and state gift certificate laws by selling vouchers with illegal expiration dates.

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MediaPost: There’s An App For That – But At What Cost? - Published Article -  04/10/2012

By Alison Fitzpatrick and Alison Winter

The App Store has over 500,000 apps for work, play and everything in between. There are apps for news, finance, travel, social networking, games and everything else you can imagine. There is even a turkey call app for those who enjoy turkey hunting. (For the record, the authors of this article do not condone that activity – so please no letters!)

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> Commercial Email with Falsified or Misrepresented Header Information Violates Anti-Spam Law - Alert -  04/02/2012

The California Court of Appeal ruled that commercial email that uses a sender domain name that neither identifies the actual sender on its face nor is readily traceable to the sender using a publicly available online database, such as WHOIS, violates the state's anti-spam law.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> Final FTC Privacy Report Seeks New Laws, Supports 'Do Not Track,' Exempts Small Businesses, and Targets Data Brokers - Alert -  03/27/2012

The final privacy report just issued by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) substantially reflects the preliminary staff report (click here to view previous Alert) on consumer privacy and data collection practices issued by the FTC in December 2010 - albeit with a number of rather important changes.

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MediaPost: The Pinning Rules - Published Article -  03/26/2012

By Vejay G. Lalla and Anne DiGiovnni

In addition to “friending,” “liking,” “tweeting,” and “checking in,” the social-media savvy have added “pinning” to their repertoire as Pinterest.com has taken off more than 1 billion page views per month.

As with other social networks or sites that have significantly increased traffic over a very short time, the rules of engagement, particularly for brands, are not yet entirely clear. However, we know that social media marketers have a continuing desire to drive traffic and monetize the ever-growing word-of-mouth engagement power of social networking.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> Mobile App Operators Announce Agreement with California Attorney General - Alert -  03/15/2012

In response to consumer privacy concerns, the leading operators of mobile application platforms – Amazon.com Inc., Apple Inc., Google Inc., Hewlett-Packard Company, Microsoft Corporation, and Research in Motion Limited (the Mobile App Operators) – announced an agreement with the California Attorney General setting forth improved privacy protections for app users.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> Copyright Termination Rights Create Quandaries For Music Licensees - Alert -  03/14/2012

Brewing battles between artists and music companies over ownership rights could pose a significant liability problem for producers of commercials, motion pictures, television programs, digital content and others who seek to use musical works.


The Recorder // Louis Willacy - Press Mention - 03/08/2012

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> Obama Administration Releases New Privacy Framework; Interactive Industry Responds to Calls for a "Do Not Track" Option - Alert -  02/28/2012

The Obama Administration has released a framework for protecting privacy and promoting innovation in the global digital economy that it intends to implement "without delay." The document, "Consumer Data Privacy in a Networked World," highlights the continuing importance of privacy issues to businesses and individuals - and to the government.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> FCC Adopts 'Robocall' Rules Tracking FTC's Standard - Alert -  02/22/2012

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has adopted new rules relating to autodialed or prerecorded telemarketing calls, also known as "telemarketing robocalls," that essentially are intended to be consistent with the Telemarketing Sales Rule (TSR) enacted by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> European Commission Proposes Comprehensive Reform of EU Data Protection Rules - Alert -  01/26/2012

It has been approximately 17 years since the European Commission enacted its Data Privacy Directive governing the processing of personal data of EU residents.  Obviously much has changed since that time, including the explosion of access to broadband internet access, smart phones and consumers’ online activities and behavior.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> FDA Issues Draft Guidance on Responding to Unsolicited Requests for Off-Label Information - Alert -  01/17/2012

On December 27, 2011, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released its draft "Guidance for Industry on Responding to Unsolicited Requests for Off-Label Information About Prescription Drugs and Medical Devices," the first of multiple planned draft guidances responding to testimony and comments from 2009 hearings addressing social media marketing by manufacturers and distributors (companies) of prescription human and animal drug products and medical devices.

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Edge-Online.com: The great US patent shakeup – How will changes to US patent law affect the videogame industry?  - Published Article -  01/16/2012

By S. Gregory Boyd and C. Andrew Keisner

US patent law is about to receive its biggest shakeup since the Patent Act of 1952. And it’s likely to affect all game publishers and developers. The Leahy-Smith America Invents Act, or AIA for short, which was signed into law last September and gradually phases into effect in March 2013, will significantly change the way companies will apply for and defend their patents.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> FTC To Issue Mandatory Information Requests To Alcoholic Beverage Companies  - Alert -  01/11/2012

Last year the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced that it intended to begin a study of the self-regulatory efforts of the alcoholic beverage industry and sought public comments on its proposed collection of data from these companies.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> Circuit Court Upholds Challenges To New Jersey Gift Card Law - Alert -  01/10/2012

In a ruling that provides at least some relief to issuers of stored value cards, a federal court of appeals has affirmed a district court decision preliminarily enjoining the retroactive application of a broad New Jersey law governing stored value cards and preliminarily enjoining the prospective application of the law’s "place-of-purchase" presumption.

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PRWeek: Be It Snake Oil Or Social Media, Transparency is Recommended - Published Article -  01/01/2012

By: Gary A. Kibel

Since the days when the snake-oil salesman would roll into town with a well-placed accomplice in the crowd to support bogus medicinal claims during his sales pitch, promotions professionals have struggled with issues of transparency and full disclosure. The Web has replaced the stage outside the covered wagon as the venue of choice, but the issues are still very relevant as word-of-mouth marketing and testimonials remain effective promotional strategies.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> NAD Considers 'Like-Gated' Campaign For The First Time - Alert -  12/07/2011

Many companies rely on social media to promote their brands and products. Toward that end, these companies often use a variety of offers, including rebates and coupons, to solicit Facebook "likes."

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> Models Must Be Paid On Last Day Of Photo Shoot Under California Labor Law - Alert -  12/06/2011

The California Labor Code provides that, with limited exception, when an employer "discharges" an employee who provided services in California, the wages earned and unpaid at the time of the discharge are due and payable immediately.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> Facebook-FTC Settlement Resolves Multiple Privacy Complaints With The Dominant Social Network - Alert -  12/01/2011

Facebook's settlement of Federal Trade Commission (FTC) allegations that it misrepresented its privacy practices to consumers resolves numerous complaints over Facebook's privacy practices and may be viewed as a model for how interactive companies in the United States should handle consumer privacy issues.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> FTC Endorses New Privacy System for the United States and Asia-Pacific Region Regarding Cross-Border Data Transfers - Alert -  11/28/2011

Cross-border data transfers have become increasingly complex over the years as different countries and regions enforce privacy laws and practices that vary from those in the United States.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> California Suit Highlights Risks of Environmental Marketing - Alert -  11/17/2011

In 2008, California amended its environmental marketing law to prohibit the sale of food or beverage containers within the state that are labeled with the terms "biodegradable," "degradable," or "decomposable." Now, California Attorney General Kamala D. Harris has filed the state’s first court action under the law against three companies that allegedly made false and misleading claims by marketing plastic water or beverage bottles as 100 percent "biodegradable" and "recyclable."

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> Stop Online Piracy Act: The Details - Alert -  11/10/2011

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Tex.), Ranking Member John Conyers (D-Mich.), IP Subcommittee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), and former Subcommittee Chairman Howard Berman (D-Calif.), together with a number of other Republican and Democratic House Members, have introduced H. R. 3261, the "Stop Online Piracy Act," to "promote prosperity, creativity, entrepreneurship, and innovation by combating the theft of U.S. property."

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> Cause Marketing Targeted By New York Attorney General - Alert -  10/26/2011

This past June, New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman went to court to shut down the "Coalition Against Breast Cancer," which he characterized as a "sham charity that fraudulently raised millions of dollars under the guise of fighting breast cancer, only to funnel the money to organization insiders and fundraisers." 

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Washington Legal Foundation - Legal Opinion Letter: Will Federal Food Ad "Guidelines" Tread On Brand Trademarks? - Published Article -  10/21/2011

By: Joseph J. Lewczak and Angela M. Bozzuti

Kellogg’s, McDonald’s, General Mills, Campbell Soup Company – these company names are immediately recognizable to consumers and evoke certain feelings or emotions about these companies and their multiple brands. These names are trademarks: source identifiers that communicate brand integrity and established goodwill. Trademarks, which can include business and product names, logos, slogans, and characters, are among a company’s most valuable assets and are intrinsically tied to overall brand equity.


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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> FTC Proposes Amendments To "Mail Order Rule" To Keep Up With Technology - Alert -  10/12/2011

For many years, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has required that sellers who solicit buyers to order merchandise through mail or telephone have a reasonable basis to expect that they can ship ordered merchandise within the time frame they advertise or, if they do not specify a time frame, within 30 days. When a seller cannot ship within the promised time, the FTC's Mail or Telephone Order Merchandise Rule (the Rule) also requires that the seller either obtain the buyer's consent to the shipping delay or refund payment for the unshipped merchandise.

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