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HEADLINES

TRO EXTENDED IN REALNETWORKS VS. STREAMBOX

The Temporary Restraining Order issued in favor of RealNetworks, which precludes Streambox from distributing its "Ripper", "VCR"' and "Ferret" products, has been extended an additional ten days. Chief among Real's claims is the contention that "Ripper" and "VCR" violate the Digital Millenium Copyright Act by bypassing RealAudio and RealVideo copyright security features thus enabling users to convert those files to unprotected formats. The court will next hold a hearing on January 17th, when it will rule on whether a preliminary injunction should issue.


"MOVIEBUFF" BELONGS TO BROOKFIELD

The Ninth Circuit, in a decision hailed for its in-depth understanding of the differences between the Internet and traditional media, issued a preliminary injunction against West Coast Video precluding it from using Brookfield's trademark, "moviebuff," in its domain name or as a metatag keyword on its web site.


FIRST AMENDMENT PROTECTS BLUE OVAL'S RIGHT TO POST

On September 7, 1999, Federal District Court Judge Nancy Edmunds denied Ford Motor Company's request for a preliminary injunction seeking to prevent BlueOvalNews from publishing internal Ford documents received from anonymous sources on its web site. In her ruling, Judge Edmunds found that, although Ford had presented "substantial evidence" that BlueOval had violated Michigan's Uniform Trade Secrets Act, the First Amendment does not permit prior restraint by way of injunction. However, Judge Edmunds did grant Ford an injunction precluding BlueOval from infringing on Ford's copyrights and also ordered BlueOval to identify all Ford documents in its possession and reveal how, and from whom, those documents were obtained.


SARBANES-OXLEY ACT

The Sarbanes-Oxley Act, which came into law back in 2002, does of course have a significant impact upon IT and the internet. The main general IT controls are in the areas of program change/development and access to data & computer operations. IT departments are reporting that the major areas of focus for audit are security, change management, SDLC and operations documentation. However, with many organizations still nowhere near to compliance (ref Sarbanes-Oxley Forum) legal penalties in this area look highly likely. We will be watching this closely. Sarbanes-Oxley introductory resource: Sarbanes-Oxley Toolkit

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