April 18, 2013

Class Action Certified in John Doe v. PositiveSingles.com and SuccessfulMatch.com Case

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Green & Noblin, P.C. and Traverse Legal, PLC were able to obtain an order granting motion for class certification in the John Doe v. PositiveSingles.com and SuccessfulMatch.com class action.  The court granted class certification for approximately 9,346 members of PositiveSingles.com and SuccessfulMatch.com, many of whom signed up through defendant's affiliate marketing scheme, finding that joinder of all members would be impracticable, class action is well-defined and the questions of law and fact common to the class predominate.  The class action certification order is included below. 

Order Granting Class Certification

 

The common questions to this class action are as follows:

1. Whether Defendant's ommision of the names of over 1,000 different websites that link to the profile information entered into each ofhte individual websites was a material nondisclosure;

2. Whether Defendant's use of privacy and exclusivity langauage in its websites soliciting members was rendered misleading by the failure to disclose all of the websites that would link to each member's infomration;

3. Whether the use of language in the terms of service suggesting that the information "may" be available to other sites was rendered misleading by the fact that the information was in fact immediately accessible on over 1,000 other sites;

4. Whether the Defendant's conduct was unfair because the harm it caused fat outweighed the utility of having 1,000 undisclosed websites;

5. Whether the Defendant's conduct violated the CLRA;

6. Whether the terms of the Terms of Service were unconscionable by virtue of granting a worldwide, perpetual right to modify and edit and otherwise exploit the user's information or by purporting to limit the CLRA statute of limitations to one year, which is substantively unconscionable as a matter of public policy.

A federal class action is being prepared.  If you are a registered user of PositiveSingles.com or any other website indicating that it is "powered by PositiveSingles.com" during the 4-year period ending on October 1, 2011, you will likely be a member of this class action.  Contact Traverse Legal for more information by clicking here

January 17, 2013

Social Media Policy Considerations

With more and more states banning employers from accessing password protected social media accounts, it is critically important for businesses to understand what is and is not permitted when it comes to social media in the workplace.  Michigan is the most recent state to enact legislation to prohibit employers and schools from asking applicants, employees, and students for their online passwords or account information in order to access private internet and email accounts, which includes social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Youtube, or other sites.  Anyone who breaches this law may face jail time and up to a $1,000 fine.  Michigan is not the only state to have enacted such legislation.  California, Maryland, and Illinois have also enacted such legislation. 

While this kind of legislation is important for businesses to be aware of, it's equally important for businesses to understand that they would be well served to draft a social media policy for their workplace.  Drafting such a policy, idealy with the help of an internet lawyer, will allow the business to clearly identify what is acceptable and unacceptable usage inside and outside of a business workplace.  It will also detail such things as what happens to the social media accounts when the employees employment is terminated.  A properly drafted social media policy should comply with privacy laws, such as those mentioned above that continue to be regularly enacted. Without a social media policy, it may be difficult to discipline an employee or terminate an employee based upon social media activity.

Continue reading Social Media Policy Considerations >>
September 12, 2012

Legal Compliance for Mobile App Developers

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has published a new guide for app developers on how to market their products legally.  This guide provides mobile app developers basic information regarding how they collect, use, and disclose information from users.  The title of the guide, “Marketing Your Mobile App: Get it Right from the Start,” discusses the importance of truthful advertising and privacy considerations.
Continue reading Legal Compliance for Mobile App Developers >>
August 31, 2012

How to Subpoena a Web Hosting Company

The internet is still the Wild, Wild West, and it's so easy for people to post information, to upload information, to review, to comment that there are a lot of things that happen on the internet that are very difficult to trace.  That is to say, to find out who did it and so if it is something that is a defamatory comment that someone has posted about you.
   
You're trying to figure out who said it, or someone has stolen your copyright protected material and engaged in copyright infringement by posting that copyright protected material on their website or some other website.  Then you have to find out who they are.
   
The same issue can arise in the trademark infringement context, where people are using your trademark.  But they've registered a domain name which incorporates your trademark, and they're using a privacy or proxy service to hide their identity. 

Continue reading How to Subpoena a Web Hosting Company >>
August 13, 2012

Financing for Internet Startups: Part 1

Clients of mine often ask, “What kind of financing is available for internet startup?” Well, there’s really three areas of financing that are available at the early stages. The first is angel investment. Angel investment is early stage investment, or sometimes called seed round investment, and an angel investor can basically be anyone, it can be family member. A lot of times, it is a high wealth individual and it can also be other entrepreneurs.

 

Continue reading Financing for Internet Startups: Part 1 >>
July 19, 2012

What to do in the Event of a Security Breach

The federal government is also discussing and introducing bills regarding data security and breach notification requirements. In fact, the latest, known as the Data Security and Breach Notification Act of 2012, is one moving through government right now. So, the question becomes, what must a company do in the event that a security breach occurs? Now, there are many things that a company needs to do once they receive notice that a security breach has occurred.

Continue reading What to do in the Event of a Security Breach >>
June 19, 2012

Social Media Trademark Infringement

Today, I will be talking about many issues that my law firm Traverse Legal, PLC often hears about as it relates to social media trademark infringement. And just so we’re all speaking the same language, when I’m talking about social media, I’m obviously talking about sites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and many of the others that are popping up on what seems to be a daily basis.  And we are getting existing clients and prospective clients that continuously contact us and ask what is social media trademark infringement?

Continue reading Social Media Trademark Infringement >>
June 04, 2012

An Internet Law Lawyer Needs to Understand How the Internet Works

You can hire an attorney who's a general practitioner, or you can hire the lawyer down the block, the lawyer that you've used for different things and real estate matters, or perhaps to draft some contracts.  But here's what they are missing, if they don't understand the back end technology of the internet and how the online world works.

 

 

Continue reading An Internet Law Lawyer Needs to Understand How the Internet Works >>
May 22, 2012

Court Denies PostiveSingles and SuccessfulMatch Motion to Dismiss in John Doe Class Action Lawsuit.

Contact for us more information on this Class Action

Find below the recent court decision denying Defendant’s SuccessfulMatch and PositiveSingles Motion to Dismiss.  This will allow the class action lawsuit filed by John Doe to move forward.  Recall, the class action filed in the Superior Court for the State of California in the County of Santa Clara alleging violation of California’s Unfair Competition Law and Consumer Legal Remedies Act.  The lawsuit is being handled by Green Welling, P.C. in San Francisco and Traverse Legal, PLC out of Los Angeles, California;  Austin, Texas; and Traverse City, Michigan.  If you are a registered user of PositiveSingles.com or any of the SuccessfulMatch affiliate websites and feel like you have been aggrieved, please contact us privately using the “contact an attorney today” button on this page.  Your information will be kept private and confidential. 

The class action against PositiveSingles and SuccessfulMatch will now continue forward on the merits of the lawsuit.  Class action plaintiffs are seeking compensatory and punitive damages, including attorney’s fees and costs. 

Continue reading Court Denies PostiveSingles and SuccessfulMatch Motion to Dismiss in John Doe Class Action Lawsuit. >>
February 29, 2012

Newman | Du Wors and Strange & Carpenter Announce Antitrust Investigation Against Facebook at StopFacebookCredits.com

The law firms of Newman| Du Wors and Strange & Carpenter have issued a press release regarding the investigation into the virtual currency system known as Facebook Credits.  It is believed that users of its online gaming platform are forced to use only Facebook credits, and as a result, may be in violation of U.S. antitrust laws. 

In an effort to spread the word about the investigation, the firms have launched the stopfacebookcredits.com website. 

Related Stories:

US lawyers float Facebook Credits antitrust suit - The Register

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