|News Briefs from July
Patent Infringement and State Sovereign Immunity
7/20. The U.S.
Court of Appeals (FedCir) issued its opinion in State
Contracting & Engineering v. Florida, a case involving the
application of state sovereign immunity to patent infringement and related
The plaintiffs hold two patents pertaining to highway sound barrier walls.
Plaintiffs bid on, and received construction contracts from the State of Florida
Department of Transportation (FDOT). Plaintiffs subsequently obtained patents on
the technology included within their proposals. The FDOT included data from
these proposals in subsequent requests for bids. Plaintiffs sought royalties.
After unsuccessful negotiations, plaintiffs filed a complaint in U.S. District
against Florida and seven private contracts. Plaintiffs alleged direct
infringement by Florida, direct infringement by the private contractors, a
Lanham Act violation by Florida, unconstitutional taking by Florida, and breach
of contract by Florida. The District Court granting summary judgment to
The Appeals Court affirmed the District Court's grant of summary judgment to
Florida as to the patent infringement and Lanham Act claims on grounds of
sovereign immunity. It also affirmed the grant of summary judgment to Florida as
to the takings claim and the breach of contract claim. It vacated and remanded
the District Court's grant of summary judgment to the private contractors on the
patent infringement claims.
The Originality Requirement of Copyright
7/20. The U.S. Court of Appeals
(3rdCir) issued its opinion
v. Kanbridge, a case regarding the originality requirement for
Facts. Southco manufactures captive screw fasteners, devices used in
assembling the panels of computers and telecommunications equipment. Southco
developed a numbering system to serve as a shorthand description of the relevant
characteristics of each fastener to assist its employees and customers in
identifying and distinguishing among its products. This nine digit numbering
system has become an industry standard. Kanebridge is a distributor of competing
fasteners. It began using Southco's part numbers in comparison charts that were
included in advertisements and other literature that it provides to customers.
District Court. Southco filed a complaint in U.S. District Court (EDPenn)
against Kanbridge alleging patent infringement. The District Court granted
Southco a preliminary injunction. This appeal followed.
Appeals Court. Kanbridge argued several issues on appeal (including lack
of originality, the scenes a faire doctrine, the merger doctrine, and fair use).
However, the Appeals Court reversed pursuant to the lack of originality, and
therefore did not address the other issues. The Court applied Section 102 of the
Copyright Act (which provides copyright protection for "original works of
authorship") and the 1991 opinion of
the Supreme Court in Feist Publications v. Rural Tel. Serv., 499 U.S. 340
(which held that the originality requirement means that a work must have been
"independently created by the author" and must possess "at least
some minimal degree of creativity."). The Appeals Court held that there was
no originality here. It wrote: "there is simply no room for creativity when
assigning a number to a new panel fastener. The part has certain relevant
characteristics, and the numbering system specifies certain numbers for each of
those characteristics. As a result, there is only one possible part number for
any new panel fastener that Southco creates. This number results from the
mechanical application of the system, not creative thought."
U.S. Singapore Trade Agreement
7/20. The USTR stated that the U.S. and
Singapore concluded the fourth round of negotiations on the U.S. Singapore Free
Trade Agreement (FTA) in London. The USTR stated in a release that
"The two sides continued intensive negotiations on a wide range of issues,
including trade in goods, customs and rules of origin, textiles, trade in
services, investment, intellectual property rights, and government procurement.
Significant progress was achieved in services and rules of origin. The two sides
agreed to adopt the negative list approach for services and investment and to
develop state of the art rules of origin to take into account the globalization
of manufacturing in a knowledge-based world economy." The parties will
resume negotiations during the week of September 17-21, 2001 in London.
House Committee Examines Violent Video Games
7/20. The House Commerce Committee's
Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet held a hearing on the
software, movie and music industries' efforts to curb children's exposure to
Rep. Billy Tauzin (R-LA), Chairman of
the full committee, said in his prepared
statement that "there is legislation currently before the Energy and
Commerce Committee that would enable the government to enforce policies against
marketing and selling this material to minors, and we need to think about it
Douglas Lowenstein of the Interactive Digital
Software Association (IDSA) addressed games. He argued in his prepared
testimony that a majority of game players are adults, and that since games
are costly, children need parental consent to obtain them. He also testified
that "we do live in a world where media is incredibly complex, where the
Internet spans the globe, where consumers, young and old, have access to
information in ways never before imagined. In this environment, it is simply not
possible or realistic to create an airtight system where young people do not
hear about, or even obtain, games that are not appropriate for them."
Lee Peeler of the Federal Trade Commission said in his prepared
testimony that "Seventy percent of the 118 electronic games with a
Mature rating for violence the Commission examined targeted children under
See, prepared statements of other witnesses: Jack
Valenti (Motion Picture Association of America), Hilary
Rosen (Recording Industry Association of America), Doug
McMillon (Wal-Mart Stores), and Daphne
White (The Lion & Lamb Project).
DOJ Forms Anti Hacking and IP Crimes Units
7/20. Attorney General John Ashcroft gave a speech in which
he announced the formation of nine new units at the Department of Justice named Computer Hacking
and Intellectual Property (CHIP) units. The new units will prosecute computer
intrusions, copyright and trademark violations, theft of trade secrets and
economic espionage, theft of computer and high tech components, fraud, and other
Internet crimes. One such unit already exists for the San Francisco area. New
units will be created for Los Angeles, San Diego, Atlanta, Boston, New York
City, Dallas, Seattle and northern Virginia. The CHIP units will be staffed with
a total of 77 people, of which 48 will be prosecutors.
AG Ashcroft stated that "These new teams will prosecute vigorously those
responsible for cybercrime. As a result we hope to reinforce the message to
would-be criminals that there are no free passes in cyberspace. Crimes will be
investigated and criminals will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the
Export Control Bills
7/19. Rep. David Dreier (R-CA), Amo Houghton (R-NY) and Jeff Flake (R-AZ) introduced HR 2568, the
Export Administration Act of 2001. It is identical to S 149 as
reported by the Senate Banking
Committee on March 22, 2001. The bill would ease restraints on the export of
most dual use products, such as computers and software. The bill was referred to
the Committee on International Relations. See, Dreier release.
7/18. Rep. Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Rep.
Amo Houghton (R-NY), Jeff Flake (R-AZ), and Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) introduced HR 2557, the
Export Administration Act of 2001.
7/20. Rep. Benjamin Gilman (R-NY)
introduced HR 2581, a bill to provide authority to control exports.
Internet Gambling Bills
7/20. Rep. John LaFalce (D-NY)
2579, the Internet Gambling Payments Prohibition Act. On Tuesday, July 24,
the House Financial Services
Committee's Financial Institutions Subcommittee will hold a hearing on
Internet gambling proposals.
.us Domain Management
7/20. Rep. Ed Markey
(D-MA), the ranking Democrat on the House Telecom and Internet Subcommittee,
sent a letter [PDF] to
Commerce Secretary Donald Evans regarding the .us top level domain.
Rep. Markey stated that the "NTIA has announced its intent to contract out
management of the ".us" domain, apparently to any contractor willing
to run the ccTLD registry service at no cost to the government. I strongly
suggest that the Department of Commerce reconsider this proposal for several
reasons." He went on to state that it should be managed "in the public
interest, serving all Americans in a non-commercial context." Moreover, he
stated that "it is inexcusable to give away this public asset without due
On June 13, NTIA,
which is a part of the Commerce Department, issued a Request
for Quotations (RFQ) for management of the .us domain. The final date for
responses to the RFQ is July 27.
FCC Approves Verizon 271 Application in Connecticut
7/20. The FCC approve Verizon's Section 271 application to
provide in region interLATA service in Connecticut. Verizon serves only two
communities in Connecticut with a total of 60,000 lines. See, FCC
release. Verizon has a 271 application pending with the FCC for
Pennsylvania, and plans to file applications later this year for the states of
New Hampshire, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and Vermont. See, Verizon
Sprint General Counsel Richard Devlin had this reaction: "Sprint is
disappointed that the FCC did not use this Section 271 application to signal a
get-tough approach to Verizon and other Bell companies that have not truly
opened up their local markets to competition. Verizon's Connecticut customers,
like its New York customers, will experience very limited local competition -
and not benefit from the promise of full local competition under the Telecom
Act." See, release.
People and Appointments
7/20. The Senate confirmed Ralph Boyd to be Assistant Attorney General
for the Civil Rights Division and Eileen O'Connor to be Assistant
Attorney General for the Tax Division.
7/20. The U.S.
Court of Appeals (FedCir) issued its opinion in Dayco
v. Total Containment, a patent infringement case. The case
involved claims of infringement of several patents pertaining to cylindrical
hoses. The District Court granted summary judgment of non-infringement. The
Appeals Court affirmed as to one patent, and vacated and remanded as to the
7/20. Microsoft filed its opposition [PDF] to
the DOJ's July 13 motion
[PDF] for immediate issuance of mandate in the Microsoft antitrust case.
Microsoft would like the Appeals Court to address its July 18 Petition for Rehearing
[PDF] before returning the case to the District Court. It stated that the
petition "raises a substantial question and thus merits the attention of
the Court. The mandate plainly should not issue while the Court is still
considering Microsoft’s petition and plaintiffs’ response."
Senate Appropriations Committee Approves CJS Bill
7/19. The Senate Appropriations
Committee approved its version of HR 2500, the
appropriations bill for the Departments of Commerce, Justice, and State, and for
the Judiciary, and for related agencies, including the FCC, FTC, and SEC. The
House passed its version of this bill, which is also known at the CJS
appropriations bill, on July 18. See, Senate
The Senate version of the bill now includes $73.0 Million for the NTIA;
$43.4 Million is for public telecommunications facilities, planning and
construction, and $15.5 Million for information infrastructure grants. The bill
also includes $252.5 Million for the FCC, $514 Million for the SEC,
and $696.5 Million for the NIST.
The Senate bill also provides $1.1 Billion for the USPTO,
which is a part of the Department of Commerce. The House bill provides $1.129
Billion. The USPTO is funded by fees collected from users. However, the amount
of fees collected exceeds that made available to the USPTO. The difference is
diverted to subsidize other government programs, a practice that is opposed by
the intellectual property community.
7/19. The House Judiciary Committee
postponed indefinitely its scheduled mark up of HR 2047, the
Patent and Trademark Office Authorization Act of 2002. The bill provides that
"There are authorized to be appropriated to the United States Patent and
Trademark Office for salaries and necessary expenses for fiscal year 2002 an
amount equal to the fees collected in fiscal year 2002 ..." Hence, it seeks
to end the diversion of USPTO fees to fund other government programs.
Evans Will Take More Time to Develop New 3G Plan
7/19. Commerce Secretary Donald Evans sent a letter
to FCC Chairman Michael Powell regarding plans to "identify additional
spectrum for third generation (3G) advanced mobile wireless services." He
stated that this will be done "with additional time". While the
Clinton administration had developed a plan, and set a timetable for identifying
and allocating spectrum for 3G wireless systems, Evans stated that "I have
directed the Acting Administrator of the National
Telecommunications and Information Administration to work with the FCC to
develop a new plan for the selection of 3G spectrum."
CTIA P/CEO Tom
Wheeler had this reaction: "Today's letter is good news for the wireless
industry. It confirms that the highest levels of government, from both the
commercial and military perspectives, are searching for a “win-win” solution
on spectrum allocation for the next generation of wireless services. The letter
also calls for both speed and flexibility in finding that solution - two
characteristics that will be necessary as we strive in the weeks ahead for a
solution that preserves national security and enhances our economy. ..."
InterTrust v. Microsoft
7/19. InterTrust, a provider of digital
rights management technologies, announced that it will file a second amended
complaint in the U.S. District Court (NDCal) against Microsoft
adding a claim for infringement of InterTrust's U.S.
Patent No. 5,920,861, which discloses techniques for defining, using, and
manipulating rights management data structures. InterTrust will seek monetary
damages and injunctive relief, including an injunction prohibiting further
infringement by Microsoft products, including Microsoft's Reader (application for
reading electronic books) and Digital Asset Server.
InterTrust filed its original complaint on April 26, 2001, alleging infringement
of its U.S.
Patent No. 6,185,683. On June 27, InterTrust filed its first
amended complaint [PDF], adding a claim for infringement of its U.S.
Patent No. 6,253,193. (Case No. C 01 1640 JL.)
People and Appointments
7/19. The Department of Justice formally announced the appointments
of Hewitt Pate, Deborah Herman, and Michael Katz to be Deputy Assistant Attorney
Generals (DAAGs) in the Department of Justice (DOJ) Antitrust Division; however, these
selections have long been public knowledge. Hewitt Pate was appointed
DAAG in charge of regulatory matters; he will oversee airline, transportation,
energy and other regulatory matters. He previously was a partner in the
litigation, intellectual property and antitrust section of the law firm of Hunton & Williams. See, DOJ release
7/19. Deborah Herman was appointed DAAG in charge of civil enforcement.
She was previously a partner in the antitrust litigation section of the law firm
Day. She has experience in telecommunications and high technology issues.
7/19. Michael Katz was appointed DAAG in charge of economic analysis. He
is a professor of economics and business at the University of California at
Berkeley's Haas School. He also directs the school's Center for
Telecommunications and Digital Convergence. From 1994 through 1996 he was Chief
Economist at the FCC. His areas of interest
include networks industries, intellectual property licensing, telecommunications
policy, and cooperative research and development. See, DOJ release
and Berkeley bio.
7/19. The Senate Banking Committee
held a hearing on the nomination of Harvey Pitt to be Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission.
7/19. The Senate Judiciary Committee
approved the nomination of Roger Gregory to be a Judge on the U.S. Court
of Appeals (4thCir).
7/19. The Senate Judiciary Committee
approved the nomination of Ralph Boyd to be Assistant Attorney General
for the DOJ's Civil Rights
Division, and the nomination of Robert McCallum to be Assistant
Attorney General for the DOJ's Civil
7/19. The U.S. Court of
Appeals (DCCir) issued an order [PDF] in USA
v. Microsoft regarding Microsoft's July 18 petition for rehearing
[PDF]. The Court wrote, "Upon consideration of appellant’s petition for
rehearing filed on July 18, 2001, it is ORDERED that appellees respond thereto
and do so on or before August 3, 2001. A reply to the response will not be
accepted by the court."
7/19. The House rejected HJRes 50
by a vote of 169 to 259. See, Roll
Call No. 255. This resolution, which is sponsored by Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) and Rep. Sherrod Brown (D-OH), would
have ended normal trade relations with China. Specifically, it would have
disapproved of the extension of the waiver authority contained in § 402(c)
of the Trade Act of 1974 with respect to the People's Republic of China.
7/19. The Senate Judiciary Committee
approved S 407,
the Madrid Protocol Implementation Act, a bill to amend the Trademark Act of
1946 to provide for the registration and protection of trademarks in order to
carry out provisions of certain international conventions.
House Holds Hearing on Internet Taxes
7/18. The House Judiciary Committee's
Commercial & Administrative Law Subcommittee held a hearing on HR 1410, the
Internet Tax Moratorium and Equity Act, sponsored by Rep. Ernest
Istook (R-OK) and others. This bill would temporarily extend that existing
moratorium on multiple and discriminatory Internet taxes, and Internet access
taxes. It would also provide that state and local taxing authorities may require
out of jurisdiction Internet sellers (and other remote sellers) to collect sales
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Quill v. North
Dakota, 504 U.S. 298 (1992) that state and local taxing authorities are
barred under the Commerce Clause from requiring remote sellers without a
substantial nexus to the taxing jurisdiction to collect sales taxes for sales to
persons within the jurisdiction. However, the Court added that Congress may
extend such authority. HR 1410 would provide such taxing authority.
ITFA. Congress passed the Internet Tax Freedom Act (ITFA) in 1998,
creating the existing three year moratorium, which expires on October 21 of this
year. Proponents of increasing state and local taxing authority seek to bundle
their proposals with a moratorium extension. Some others seek only an extension
of the moratorium contained in the ITFA. Rep.
Chris Cox (R-CA) is sponsoring a pair of bills that would do only this.
State Tax Base. Rep. Jerrold
Nadler (D-NY) supports Rep. Istook's bill. He stated that Congress should
"enable state and local governments to levy sales and use taxes" This,
he said, is for the purpose of "protecting the tax bases of state and local
governments." Rep. Spencer Bachus
(R-AL) stated that "you have those taxes being undermined because more and
more people are going to the Internet". Grover Norquist of Americans for Tax Reform countered that
the Internet is not a threat to state and local tax collection. First, he said
that it accounts for about 1% of sales, while the "state governments are
flush with resources" that they do not tax, such as services. Norquist
added that Internet retailers are taking sales away from catalogue sellers, not
brick and mortar retailers located within the taxing jurisdictions.
States Rights. Rep. Istook testified that this is not just a tax
collection issue -- it is a states rights issue also. That is, if states are not
able to put their policies into effect with revenues collected from sales taxes,
political power will shift to Washington. Norquist retorted that this states
rights argument is "George Wallace's argument."
Privacy. Rep. Bob Barr (R-GA)
and Norquist raised the issue of privacy. Under the proposed legislation,
retailers would need to collect data, including individuals' names, addresses,
items purchased, and locations of purchases. Norquist pointed out that this
would enable the government to track individuals. He also reminded the
Subcommittee that "this government can't keep people's FBI files
private". Rep. Istook responded that "the government's interest is in
the overall level of sales", not individual level data. Rep. Mel Watt (D-NC) argued that
"this is pretty much a red herring issue", noting that the IRS already
collects far more personal information.
See, opening statement
of Subcommittee Chairman Bob Barr, and prepared testimony
of Rep. Ernest Istook. See also, prepared testimony of other witnesses: Grover Norquist, Frank Julian, and Jon Abolins.
Bock v. Computer Associates
7/18. The U.S. Court of Appeals (7thCir)
issued its opinion
v. Computer Associates, an ERISA case involving a severance pay
agreement for executives of a software company. The Plaintiff, Kevin Bock, was
an employee of Platinum Technology, a software company acquired by Computer Associates International (CAI). There
was a severance agreement that provided that employees would receive
"aggregate severance pay" consisting of a "bonus amount"
added to twice the sum of their highest base salary plus their highest 12-month
amount of "incentive compensation." In 1998, Bock had a salary of
$145,000 and commissions of $674,333. When CAI bought Platinum in 1999 it
terminated Bock, and gave him severance pay of $290,00, or twice his salary.
Bock filed a complaint to enforce the severance agreement, asserting that
commissions constituted "incentive compensation." The U.S. District
Court (NDIll) entered judgment for Bock. CAI appealed. Vacated and remanded.
Microsoft Seeks Rehearing on Single Issue
7/18. Microsoft filed a Petition
for Rehearing with the U.S. Court of
Appeals (DCCir) in Microsoft v. USA on the sole issue of commingling of
certain software code specific to web browsing with software code used for other
purposes in certain files in Windows 98. Microsoft stated that the June 28 opinion of the U.S. Court
of Appeals "accepted the district court’s conclusion that such
"commingling" had occurred and that it violated Section 2 of the
Sherman Act. The Court’s ruling with regard to "commingling" of
software code is important because it might be read to suggest that OEMs should
be given the option of removing the software code in Windows 98 (if any) that is
specific to Web browsing. ... The Government, however, did not seek such relief
SEC v. Stadtt Media
7/18. The SEC announced that it settled
all claims in SEC
v. Stadtt Media, a civil securities fraud action pending
in the U.S. District Court (NDTex). Stadtt
Media, and four of its owners and employees, fraudulently raised over $900,000
from about 50 investors for the development of a website called C-Magazines.com.
Defendants falsely represented that Stadtt Media owned patents on Internet
related inventions and that a major investment banking firm was committed to
underwriting a $100 Million initial public offering. The defendants consented to
final judgments that impose permanent injunctions and other equitable relief
against them. However, no civil penalties were imposed, and payment of
disgorgement was ordered, but waived for inability to pay.
Compaq Group Fined by FEC
7/18. The Federal Election Commission (FEC)
made public its disposition of its self initiated review of the Compaq
Citizenship Fund's (CCF) failure to timely file a disclosure report, as required
by the Federal Election Campaign Act. The FEC and CCF reached a conciliation
agreement under which the CCF will pay a $2,300 civil penalty. The Compaq
Citzenship Fund is connected with Compaq
Computer Corporation. See, FEC release. (FEC MUR
5193.) The Treasurer is Michele Blair.
7/18. The U.S. Court of Appeals (9thCir)
issued an order stating the order of July 12 of the U.S. District Court (NDCal)
in A&M Records v. Napster is "stayed pending a further order of this
court." The stayed order had required that Napster block all songs that had
been identified as copyrighted. The RIAA's Cary Sherman had
this reaction: "We are confident that after a thorough review, the Ninth
Circuit Court of Appeals will uphold Judge Patel's decision. The evidence in
this case clearly shows that Napster has not done all it can to police its
system. The Ninth Circuit Court has previously ruled that Napster's conduct
required an injunction and we expect them to do so again after a full review of
the facts. It is important to note that today's ruling does not change in any
way the fact that Napster must prevent copyrighted works from appearing on its
system as previously ordered by the Court." See, RIAA release.
7/18. The House passed HR 2500, the
FY 2002 appropriations bill for the Departments of Commerce, Justice, and State,
for the Judiciary, and for related agencies, including the FCC, FTC, and SEC.
7/18. The FCC adopted its Sixth Annual
Report on the state of competition in the wireless marketplace. See, FCC
7/18. FCC Chairman Michael Powell gave a speech to the
Tenth African Telecommunications and Information Technology Conference (AFCOM
2001) in Arlington, Virginia. He spoke about digital divides and digital
development. AFCOM opened its three day conference on July 18.
7/18. Federal Reserve Chairman Alan
Greenspan appeared before the House Financial Services Committee to present the
Federal Reserve's semiannual report on monetary policy. He provided an
assessment of the current economic situation, with particular attention to the
technology sector. See, prepared
testimony and semiannual
7/18. AT&T's Board of Directors voted unanimously to reject Comcast's
proposal to acquire AT&T Broadband. See, AT&T release.
DMCA Anti Circumvention Criminal Case
7/17. The U.S. Attorney's Office (NDCal) charged Dmitry
Sklyarov by criminal
complaint [PDF] with one count of trafficking in a product designed to
circumvent copyright protection measures in violation of Digital Millennium
Copyright Act (DMCA), at 17 U.S.C. § 1201.
The complaint states that Sklyarov developed for sale and distribution a program
that can convert Adobe's eBooks into naked files that can be read, copied, and
stored on any computer.
Adobe Systems makes the eBook Reader, a
program which can read books in an electronic format named eBook. The program is
downloadable at Adobe's web site. Users can then purchase encrypted electronic
books in eBook format from online bookstores, such as Amazon.com, and read them
with the eBook Reader. The books are encrypted to protect copyright interests.
An affidavit of an FBI Agent made a part of the complaint states that
"Adobe is being victimized by a Russian company name Elcomsoft. Elcomsoft
is distributing a key over the Internet in the form of a software program that
illegally unlocks copyright protections on the e-Book files. This unlocking key
is available for purchase on the Internet at http://www.elcomsoft.com/aebpr.html.
The commercial name given by Elcomsoft to this unlocking key program is Advanced
eBook Processor (AEBPR)." The affidavit further states that Sklyarov was
scheduled to speak on July 15 at a hacker conference titled Defcon 9 in Las
The Department of Justice stated in a release that
Sklyarov was arrested, and "made his initial appearance in federal court in
Las Vegas, yesterday, July 16, 2001. Mr. Sklyarov was detained without bail and
ordered removed to the Northern District of California. No dates have been set
for the defendant's next appearance."
See also, USAO
Elcomsoft's web site states that Sklyarov is an employee of the company, and
that he developed the AEBPR. The web site is also still selling the AEBPR.
The Statute: Anti Circumvention. 17 U.S.C. § 1201(a)(1)(A) provides, in
part, that "No person shall circumvent a technological measure that
effectively controls access to a work protected under this title." 17 U.S.C.
§ 1201(b)(1) provides that "No person shall manufacture, import, offer to
the public, provide, or otherwise traffic in any technology, product, service,
device, component, or part thereof, that (A) is primarily designed or produced
for the purpose of circumventing protection afforded by a technological measure
that effectively protects a right of a copyright owner under this title in a
work or a portion thereof; (B) has only limited commercially significant purpose
or use other than to circumvent protection afforded by a technological measure
that effectively protects a right of a copyright owner under this title in a
work or a portion thereof; or (C) is marketed by that person or another acting
in concert with that person with that person's knowledge for use in
circumventing protection afforded by a technological measure that effectively
protects a right of a copyright owner under this title in a work or a portion
The Statute: Criminal Penalties. 17 U.S.C. § 1204
provides, in part, that "Any person who violates section 1201 or 1202
willfully and for purposes of commercial advantage or private financial gain (1)
shall be fined not more than $500,000 or imprisoned for not more than 5 years,
or both, for the first offense; and (2) shall be fined not more than $1,000,000
or imprisoned for not more than 10 years, or both, for any subsequent
Goodlatte and Boucher Introduce Net Tax Moratorium Bill
7/17. Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA)
and Rep. Rick Boucher (D-VA)
introduced the Internet Tax Fairness Act of 2001, a bill to make permanent the
existing moratorium on multiple and discriminatory Internet taxes, and taxes on
Internet access. The bill would also limit the imposition of business activity
taxes (BATs) on electronic and other interstate commerce by state and local
taxing authorities. The bill does not address sales taxes.
Reps. Goodlatte and Boucher spoke at a press conference announcing the
introduction of the bill. Rep. Boucher stated that this bill "will
encourage the growth of electronic commerce by extending the moratorium on
Internet taxes and by setting forth concrete guidelines for the collection of
taxes by States and localities for business activities with their
Congress passed the Internet Tax Freedom Act (ITFA) in 1998, creating the
existing three year moratorium, which expires on October 21 of this year. The
Goodlatte Boucher bill would make permanent the moratorium contained in the ITFA.
The bill would prohibit several Internet related BATs, including taxes on
"The use of the Internet to create or maintain a World Wide Web site
accessible by persons" in the taxing jurisdiction. The bill would also
prohibit BATs on the use of an ISP, on-line service provider, internetwork
communication service provider, or other Internet access service provider, or
web hosting service. It would also prohibit BATs on the "use of any service
provider for transmission of communications, whether by cable, satellite, radio,
telecommunications, or other similar system." Also, the bill would prohibit
BATs based on the "presence or use of intangible personal property ...
including patents, copyrights, trademarks, logos, ... electronic or digital
signals, and web pages ..."
With respect to BATs generally, the Goodlatte Boucher bill provides that no
state or local taxing authority may impose a BAT unless the taxed entity
"has a substantial physical presence" in the jurisdiction. The bill
further prohibits BATs on the leasing or owning of property in the jurisdiction
for less than 30 days, and on the assigning of employees, representatives or
agents in the jurisdiction for less than 30 days. Finally, the bill prohibits
BATs based on contracts, licenses, permits, loans, deposits, and securities.
Internet Caucus Hosts Debate on Internet Taxes
7/17. The Congressional Internet Caucus Advisory Committee hosted a panel debate
on taxes on Internet and other remote sales, business activity taxes, and the
existing moratorium on new and discriminatory Internet taxes and Internet access
Rep. Goodlatte, who is a Co-Chair of the Internet
Caucus, called for a permanent extension of the existing moratorium, and
legislation regarding business activity taxes (BATs). Rep. Spencer Bachus (R-AL) advocated
Congressional legislation permitting state and local sales taxes on remote
sales, including Internet sales. He stated that "our public schools are
being annihilated today because they depend on the sales tax for funding."
v. North Dakota, 504 U.S. 298 (1992), provides that state and local taxing
authorities are barred under the Commerce Clause from requiring remote sellers
without a substantial nexus to the taxing jurisdiction to collect sales taxes
for sales to persons in the jurisdiction; however, the Court added that Congress
may extend such authority. Congress has passed no such legislation. However,
there are several bills pending in the Congress that would provide this
authority. See, for example, HR 1410 and S 512.
Two panelists at the Internet Caucus debate advocating giving state and local
governments authority to tax remote sales -- Jeff DeBoer (Real Estate
Roundtable) and Frank Shafroth (National Governors Association). They argued
that there is currently an unlevel playing field that favors Internet retailers
and other remote sellers. Michael Mazerov (Center on Budget & Policy
Priorities) advocated ending "abusive tax avoidance" practices by
corporations with respect to BATs. Three panelists defended online commerce --
Adam Thierer (Cato Institute), Frank Julian (Federated Department Stores), and
Art Rosen (Coalition for Responsible & Fair Taxation). Bill Whyman (The
Precursor Group) moderated.
Adam Thierer stated, "don't blame the Internet for the problems with the
sales tax." He said that local governments' tax collection problems are the
fault their own tax policies. "The sales tax system in America is the most
unlevel playing field you can possibly find. We play more politics with the
sales tax in America than any other tax code. And the fact is, that is what is
eroding the sales tax base, not the Internet." He pointed out that online
sales account for less than 1% of aggregate retail sales. In contrast, state and
local governments exempt from their sales taxes such things as services,
agriculture, food, and clothing. He concluded that only 42% of consumption in
America is subject to sales taxes.
Senate Holds Hearing on Media Concentration
7/17. The Senate Commerce
Committee held a hearing on the 35% national television broadcast ownership
cap and the newspaper broadcast cross ownership rule. Sen. Ernest Hollings (D-SC), the Chairman
of the Committee, said in his prepared statement
[PDF] that "the rules are under attack from an insatiable industry that is
unsatisfied with the tremendous consolidation that has already taken place, in
the courts from judges who appear to be ignoring Supreme Court precedent about
the government's strong interest in preserving a 'multiplicity of information
sources' in the marketplace, and, most importantly, at the FCC, from a
Commission that seems intent on relaxing or eliminating many of the existing
ownership rules ..."
Sen. Hollings also stated that he intents to introduce a bill, along with Sen. Daniel Inouye (D-HI) and Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-ND). "Our bill,
which we may introduce today, requires FCC licensees to alert the Commission
when they acquire a newspaper that creates a cross ownership situation. The FCC
is then directed to review the appropriateness of the acquisition, and determine
whether any action is needed to bring the licensee in compliance with the
Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), the ranking
Republican, did not agree. He said in his prepared statement
[PDF] that "In the digital era, insight and commentary on matters of public
policy will no longer be dominated by Cronkite, Brinkley, the Times and the
Post. In their place have arisen CNN, CNBC, MSNBC, Salon, Wired, Slashdot and innumerable other sources of
information and news. This new mass media market is dominated, not by
broadcasters and newspapers, but by multichannel mass media entities like cable
TV, direct broadcast satellite TV, wireless cable, and, of course, the Internet.
These new media are not only powerful economic competitors; they are also
driving all forms of media to become more interactive. ... In the face of these
new competitors, new technologies and new market demands, ownership restrictions
on traditional media have not only become unnecessary, they have become
See also, prepared testimony in PDF of witnesses: Mel Karmizan
Fuller (Tribune Publishing Company Alan Frank
(Post-Newsweek Stations), William Baker
Kimmelman (Consumer’s Union), and Eli Noam
(Columbia Business School). Karmizan, who opposes the rules, stated that "a
worldwide technological tsunami has crashed upon the world, flooding the
broadcast industry with competition in unprecedented proportions. Broadcast
radio now competes head-to-head with Internet radio" and "As for
broadcast television, it competes directly with cable ... That service,
subscribed to by nearly 70% of the country’s households, has developed into a
multi-channel video programming distribution platform that not only carries
hundreds of cable networks but serves as a high-speed gateway to the Internet
..." In contrast, Kimmelman argued that "consumers' interests will
best be served if the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is instructed to
maintain previous media ownership rules ..."
Senate Finance Committee Delays Approval of Jordan FTA
7/17. The Senate Finance Committee
met to mark up SJRes 16, approving the U.S. Vietnam Trade Agreement, and S 643,
approving the U.S.
Jordan Free Trade Agreement. Both agreements were negotiated by the Clinton
administration. The Committee approved the Vietnam agreement, but postponed
action on the Jordan FTA over disputes about labor and environmental laws.
There was no dispute that an FTA with Jordan is appropriate for political
reasons. However, this FTA includes labor and environmental (L&E) paragraphs
that are controversial. They provide that neither party "shall fail to
effectively enforce its" L&E laws. Trade with Jordan is minimal, and
neither Jordan nor the U.S. cares about the other's L&E records. Rather, the
Clinton administration insisted on these provisions with the idea that this FTA
would serve as a model for future FTAs. Hence, this FTA is a vehicle for debate
over what future FTAs and other trade agreements should contain.
The Jordan FTA, which was signed on October 24, 2000, is also a model on intellectual
property rights and electronic commerce. However, this is not
controversial. The FTA addresses patents, trademarks, copyright, and enforcement
Jordan agreed to ratify and implement the WIPO's Copyright Treaty
and WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty within two years. The FTA also
provides that "each Party shall seek to refrain from: (a) deviating from
its existing practice of not imposing customs duties on electronic
transmissions; (b) imposing unnecessary barriers on electronic transmissions,
including digitized products; and (c) impeding the supply through electronic
means of services ...".
House Holds Hearing on IPR and Government R&D
7/17. The House Government Reform
Committee's Technology and Procurement Policy Subcommittee held an oversight
hearing titled "Toward Greater Public-Private Collaboration in Research and
Development: How the Treatment of Intellectual Property Rights Is Minimizing
Innovation in the Federal Government?" Subcommittee Chairman Tom Davis (R-VA) said in his opening
statement that "three-fourths of the country's top 75 information
technology companies will not do research for the Government, citing both
difficulty in contracting with the Government and the treatment of intellectual
property in R&D contracts. Thus, at the same time that Government is no
longer driving technological innovation, many commercial firms that invest
billions in R&D every year are refusing to do business with the Government.
This has serious implications for the well being of the United States."
See, prepared testimony of witnesses: Jack Brock
(General Accounting Office), Deidre Lee
(Department of Defense), Eric Fygi
(Department of Energy), Richard
Carroll (Digital Systems Resources), Richard
Kuyath (3M Corporation), and Christopher
Hill (George Mason University).
Rep. Stearns Introduces Spectrum Caps Bill
7/17. Rep. Clifford Stearns (R-FL)
introduced HR 2535, a bill pertaining to the amount of spectrum that may be
licensed to wireless carriers. It was referred to the House Commerce Committee, of which
Rep. Stearns is a member. FCC rules prohibit a single entity's interests in the
licenses of broadband PCS, cellular, and SMR services
from cumulatively exceeding more than 45 MHz of spectrum within the same
Rep. Stearns stated in a release
that "The current 45 MHz spectrum cap is beginning to impact innovation and
competition in the wireless industry. ... The cap now works to limit competition
by denying wireless providers access to open markets, thereby denying consumers
the benefits that arise from additional competition, such as lower prices and
innovative services. Additionally, continuation of the spectrum cap will result
in the continued lag of U.S. companies behind Europe and Japan in the deployment
of wireless Third Generation technologies."
Bills Introduced on Media Ownership
7/17. Sen. Ernest Hollings (D-SC), Sen. Daniel Inouye (D-HI), and Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-ND) introduced S 1189,
a bill to require the FCC to amend its daily newspaper cross ownership rules. It
was referred to the Senate Commerce Committee; all three are members. Sen.
Hollings stated that "This legislation is necessary to stem the tide toward
concentration in the broadcast and newspaper industries and force a thorough and
reasoned examination of the claims that further consolidation will serve the
7/17. In contrast, Rep. Clifford Stearns
(R-FL) introduced HR 2536, a bill to amend the Communications Act of 1934 to
reduce restrictions on media ownership. This bill was referred to the House
Bill Would Allow Media Coverage of Courts
7/17. Rep. Steve Chabot (R-OH) and Rep. Bill Delahunt (D-MA) introduced
HR 2519 a bill to allow media coverage of court proceedings. It was referred to
the House Judiciary Committee.
FCC Authorizes MSS Systems in 2GHz Band
7/17. The FCC's International Bureau (IB)
authorized eight new mobile satellite services (MSS) systems in the 2 GHz band.
The systems will be capable of providing mobile voice, data, Internet access and
other new satellite communications services. The authorizations were issued to
Boeing, Celsat America, Constellation Communications Holdings, Globalstar, ICO
Services, Iridium, Mobile Communications Holding, and TMI Communications.
The FCC's IB also stated that each of the "systems will be authorized to
operate in an equal, 3.5 megahertz segment of spectrum in each of the 1990-2025
MHz and 2165-2200 MHz bands. ... The Bureau is delaying full implementation of
the 2 GHz MSS licensing order with regard to an incremental .38 megahertz of
spectrum per licensee in each band until the Commission has the opportunity to
fully consider various pending proposals related to the 2 GHz frequencies."
Newly appointed FCC Commissioner Michael Copps released a
praising the action.
The Cellular Telecommunications Industry
Association (CTIA) is not happy. CTIA P/CEO Tom Wheeler stated that "we
hope the Commission will revisit soon whether 70 MHz of spectrum needs to be
locked up for this use at all." On July 12, the CTIA sent a letter [PDF] to
the FCC in which it stated that "It is reasonable to expect that most –
and perhaps all – of the current MSS applicants will ultimately not launch and
provide service in that band. Given increasing spectrum needs for other
services, the track record of underutilized MSS spectrum in other bands, the
financial condition of numerous MSS companies, and the claims made by New ICO
that MSS is not viable without terrestrial flexibility, the Commission should
consider whether it is in the public interest to license an additional 70 MHz
for MSS." See also, CTIA release.
Privacy Coalition Lobbies FTC for Stricter Privacy Enforcement
7/17. Members of the Privacy Coalition met with, and presented a letter to, FTC Chairman Timothy Muris. The letter list nine
things that the group wants the FTC to do with respect to privacy. The group
wants the FTC to make public more information about privacy related complaints,
and FTC investigations.
The group also wants the FTC to interpret the Federal Trade Commission Act (FTCA)
and FTC rules in a manner that would greatly expand its authority. First, it
wants the FTC to "Increase enforcement of the Telemarketing Sales Rule and
the Telephone Consumer Protection Act not only for cases of fraud but also for
invasions of privacy."
The Privacy Coalition also wants the FTC to "Revise the interpretation of
an "unfair and deceptive practice" and take into account the
principles of Fair Information Practices when examining or endorsing industry
practices, such as the NAI proposal to limit online profiling by means of a
mandatory cookie or the unilateral revision of privacy policies by
companies." Former FTC Chairman Robert Pitofsky expressed the opinion on
several occasions that the FTC does not have this authority. However, he
recommended that the Congress pass new legislation expanding its authority to
regulate online privacy.
Zoellick Addresses New Trade Round and Antitrust
7/17. USTR Robert Zoellick released a statement in
which he advocated a new round of multilateral trade negotiations. Zoellick also
focused on antitrust law enforcement. Bush administration officials have
expressed concerns that the EU is employing antitrust enforcement, not to
protect competition and benefit consumers, but to protect EU companies from non-EU
competition. Zoellick's statement was diplomatic: "In competition policy,
U.S. trade and antitrust authorities recognize the significance of the issue.
Therefore, we are working to understand more clearly what the EU seeks, and are
discussing with the EU how it can accommodate the concerns of the United States
and other countries. The United States can see merit in adherence to core
competition principles of transparency, non-discrimination, and procedural
fairness. We also can support consultative and capacity building efforts to help
countries develop modern competition policy that promotes efficient, effective,
and dynamic markets."
Bush Addresses Trade Issues
7/17. Bush gave a speech
in Washington DC in which he advocated free trade, trade promotion authority,
and a new round of multilateral trade negotiations.
Free Trade. He stated that a goal of free trade "is to ignite a new
era of global economic growth through a world trading system that is
dramatically more open and more free. One of the most important objectives
of my meetings with other G-7 leaders in Italy will be to secure their strong
endorsement for a launch of a new round of global trade negotiations later this
Trade Promotion Authority. Bush stated that "one of my most
important legislative priorities will be to secure from Congress trade promotion
authority that five other Presidents have had -- an authority necessary so that
when our United States enters into agreement, the countries with whom we've
agreed to will understand we mean business. It's time for Congress to
act." He also addressed the debate over inclusion of labor and
environmental issues: "Legitimate concerns about labor standards, the
environment, economic dislocation should be, and will be,
addressed. But we must reject a protectionism that blocks the path of
prosperity for developing countries. We must reject policies that would condemn
them to permanent poverty."
Bush on Cyberterrorism
7/17. President Bush also touched on cyberterrorism in his speech on world
trade. He stated that "The United States and her allies will pursue a
balance of world power that favors human freedom. This requires a new strategic
framework that moves beyond Cold War doctrines and addresses the threats of a
new century such as cyberterrorism, weapons of mass destruction, missiles in the
hands of those for whom terror and blackmail are a very way of life."
NCTA Writes Report on Cable Telephony
7/17. The National Cable Telecommunications
Association (NCTA) released a report [PDF]
on cable telephony. See also, NCTA
release. The report reviews cable companies' ongoing research and testing of
Voice over Internet Protocol telephony. However, it continues that cable
companies' initial forays into residential telephony have been through
traditional circuit switched technology, although this technology has been
updated to provide digital, rather than analog service. There are now 1.3
million cable telephony access lines.
The report continues that "only facilities based competitors are likely to
provide sustainable long term competition. Such competitors are less dependent
on incumbents to provide needed inputs into the provision of the competitive
service. Even so, incumbent phone companies have often done much to frustrate
facilities based competition. They have attempted to impose onerous
interconnection terms and conditions, delayed connecting facilities, processing
orders, and porting numbers, and generally placed barriers in the way of
The report also addresses the regulatory environment of cable telephony.
"Cable companies have also faced difficulty in persuading regulators of the
importance of promoting facilities based competition over the less viable resale
and unbundled network element (UNE) competitive entry strategies envisioned by
the Telecommunications Act of 1996. The reality is that it is difficult to
implement a business model that relies heavily on purchasing essential inputs
from one's fiercest competitor. A far more reliable approach is to make capital
investments in one's own infrastructure and to decrease reliance on the ILECs as
much as possible."
NCTA CEO Sachs Addresses Open Access
7/17. NCTA P/CEO Robert Sachs gave a speech at the NARUC
conference in Seattle, Washington. He stated that the Telecom Act of 1996 has
been a great success in spurring the deployment of broadband services over
cable. See also, NCTA
He also addressed open access. He stated that "some of the RBOCs
and large ISPs, have sought to have the government require that cable share its
facilities with all ISPs. This regulatory effort has been variously known as
"open access" or "forced access", or the term I prefer
"government mandated access." While only a handful of the more than
30,000 local cable franchising authorities have passed ordinances to mandate
access to cable's facilities, the federal courts have rejected such efforts --
invalidating mandated access ordinances in Portland, Oregon; Broward County,
Florida; and, just last week, in Henrico County, Virginia."
He also stated that "States too have been skeptical -- at least
twenty-three of them considered legislation in 1999 and 2000 -- but not one
passed such legislation -- in fact, not one bill even made it out of committee
in a single state. And NARUC, I'm pleased to say, has wisely chosen not to
endorse mandated access to cable facilities. I say "wisely", because
the market is addressing this issue. About a year and a half ago cable companies
began to announce that they would voluntarily carry multiple ISPs ..."
People and Appointments
7/17. The Software & Information
Industry Association (SIIA) announced the election of officers for the 2001
- 2002 term. Michael Morris, SVP, General Counsel and Secretary of Sun
Microsystems, will be Chairman of the Board. Graham Beachum, Ch/CEO of
Edge Technologies, will be Vice Chairman. Glenn Goldberg, SVP for
Corporate Affairs of McGraw-Hill, will be Secretary. Daniel Cooperman,
SVP, General Counsel and Secretary of Oracle, will be as Treasurer. See, release.
7/17. Microsoft name Skip Pizzi to head up a new position within its
Microsoft TV Group as TV standards and regulatory affairs manager. Pizzi will be
based in Washington, D.C., See, release.
7/17. Roy Bartlett joined the San Francisco office of the law firm of Covington & Burling as Of Counsel. He
previously was a partner in the law firm of White
& Case. He will focus on complex business litigation matters, with an
emphasis on intellectual property concerns. See, C&B release [PDF].
7/17. The U.S. Copyright
Office (CO) published a notice
in the Federal Register announcing new rules for group registration of
photographs. The new regulations permit submission of groups of published images
in a variety of formats as deposit copies, together with an application and
filing fee. This option applies to groups of works created by an individual
photographer that are published within one calendar year. The CO will accept
deposits on CD-ROM in either JPEG, GIF, TIFF, or PCD formats. See, Federal
Register, July 17, 2001, Vol. 66, No. 137, at Pages 37142 - 37150.
7/17. The Recording Industry Association of
America (RIAA) and the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry
(IFPI), released a Request for
Information on Audio Fingerprinting Technologies [PDF].
7/17. The NTIA
posted a reminder in its web site regarding the deadline for submitting
responses to the Request for Quotations regarding the .us top level domain.
The notice stated: "On June 13, NTIA issued a Request for Quotations (RFQ)
for management and coordination of the usTLD. On July 16, responses to all
questions received in response to this solicitation were posted as Amendment 1.
On July 17, an amended answer to Question 36 in Amendment 1 was posted as
Amendment 2. The RFQ as well as Amendments 1 and 2 are available at http://www2.eps.gov/.
The final date for responses to the RFQ remains July 27."
7/17. The Senate Commerce Committee
approved new subcommittee assignments for the Committee. The Subcommittee on
Communications is chaired by Sen. Daniel Inouye (D-HI). The other Democratic
members are Sens. Ernest Hollings (SC), John Kerry (MA), John Breaux (LA), John
Rockefeller (WV), Byron Dorgan (ND), Ron Wyden (OR), Max Cleland (GA), Barbara
Boxer (CA), John Edwards (NC), and Jean Carnahan (MO). The ranking Republican is
Sen. Conrad Burns (R-MT). The other Republicans on the Subcommittee are Sens.
Ted Stevens (AK), Trent Lott (MS), Kay Hutchison (TX), Olympia Snowe (ME), Sam
Brownback (KS), Gordon Smith (OR), Peter Fitzgerald (IL), John Ensign (NV), and
George Allen (VA).See, release.
Media Ownership Rules
7/16. Rep. Billy Tauzin (R-LA) and Rep. John Dingell (D-MI), the Chairman
and ranking Democrat on the House Commerce Committee, sent a letter to
members of the House of Representatives regarding the Federal Communications Commission's media cross
ownership and multiple ownership rules. On July 17, the House is scheduled to
vote on HR 2500,
a bill to make appropriations for FY 2002 for the Departments of Commerce,
State, and Justice, for the Judiciary, and related agencies. The FCC's
appropriation is a part of this bill. On July 16 the House Rules Committee adopted an open rule for
consideration of this bill. Rep. David Obey
(D-WI) is likely to offer an amendment that would prevent the FCC from modifying
its media cross ownership and multiple ownership rules.
The Senate Commerce Committee,
now chaired by Sen. Ernest Hollings
(D-SC), will hold a hearing on media concentration on July 17 at 9:30 AM. In
addition, Sen. Hollings may introduce a bill that would prevent the FCC from
eliminating ruled that limit the size of media companies until it has conducted
a study of the market.
Comdisco Sells Technology Services to HP and Files Chapter 11
7/16. Comdisco announced that "it
has reached a definitive agreement with Hewlett-Packard
Company to sell substantially all of its Availability Solutions (Technology
Services) business for $610 million." Comdisco also announced that it and
its U.S. subsidiaries have filed a Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition in U.S.
Bankruptcy Court (NDIll).
release and HP
Senate Committee Holds Hearing on Security Risks for
7/16. The Senate Commerce Committee's
Science, Technology, and Space Subcommittee held a hearing on security risks for
the e-consumer. Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR),
said in his prepared
statement [PDF] that "Law enforcement can provide the tools to track
down attackers and the consequences that will discourage them". Also,
"government can encourage education and incentivize research and
development of security services. Government can also facilitate information
sharing that might not otherwise occur in the private sector, fostering
discussions to identify the best practices that might better serve the public
Internet wide." See also, prepared testimony in PDF of witnesses: Vinton Cerf
Miller (ITAA), and Bruce
Schneier (Counterpane Internet Security).
Antitrust Division Takes No Action Against Homestore
7/16. Homestore.com announced that it
has been notified by the Department of
Justice that the DOJ has concluded its inquiry into certain business
activities of Homestore, and that no enforcement action is necessary. See, Homestore
Tegal v. Tokyo Electron
7/16. The U.S.
Court of Appeals (FedCir) issued it opinion in Tegal
Corp. v. Tokyo Electron, a consolidation of three appeals in
patent litigation regarding plasma reactors, which are used in the fabrication
of semiconductor devices. The issues on appeal included right to jury trial,
invalidity for obviousness, invalidity for being anticipated, enforceability,
willful infringement, and attorneys fees. The Court of Appeals vacated and
People and Appointments
Creighton will join the FTC's Bureau of Competition, which
handles antitrust matters. She is currently a partner in the law office of Wilson
Sonsini. She focuses on intellectual property and antitrust issues. She is
best known for co-authoring with Gary Reback a white paper regarding antitrust
matters relating to Microsoft that preceded action by the Antitrust Division of the Department of
Justice against Microsoft. She has also represented Orbitz, VISX, Lexis Nexis,
and Autodesk in federal antitrust matters, and Borland and Octel in intellectual
7/16. Christopher Libertelli was named Legal Counsel to the FCC's Common Carrier Bureau Chief, Dorothy Attwood.
He will focus on local competition, broadband deployment, and antitrust merger
reviews. He joined the FCC in 1999. Previously, he was an associate in the
Washington DC office of the law firm of Dow
Lohnes & Albertson.
7/16. Stephen Crimmins joined the Washington DC and New York City offices
of the law firm of Holland & Knight as a
partner in its securities litigation practice. He was Deputy Chief Litigation
Counsel in the SEC's Division of Enforcement
until July 13, 2001. See, SEC
Paoletta joined the Washington DC office of the law firm of Wiley Rein & Fielding as a partner in its
Communications practice. She will head the International Telecommunications
Group. She was previously VP of Government Relations at Level 3 Communications.
Prior to that she worked for the House
Commerce Committee. Before that she worked as Director of Telecommunications
Trade Policy at the Office of the U.S. Trade
Representative. And before that, she worked in the Office of International
Communications at the FCC. See, WRF release.
7/16. The GAO
released a report [PDF]
titled "Department of Commerce: Status of Achieving Key Outcomes and
Addressing Major Management Challenges." The report addresses, among other
topics, proliferation of dual use commodities.
7/16. Napster announced that it has
licensed PlayMedia Systems' AMP
technology to power the secure digital music player in its new membership
service. See, Napster
release and PlayMedia
Go to News Briefs from July 11-15, 2001.