TOUCHING THE UNTOUCHABLES: Regulating the Internet of Things Industry in Light of the European Union’s Upcoming ePrivacy Regulation

A note by Clinton Oppong

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This Note argues that because of growing security and privacy issues associated with IoT devices, it is time for the United States to implement an IoT specific regulation similar to the ePrivacy Regulation. Part I is devoted to a brief discussion on what IoTs are, the breadth and scope of the upcoming ePrivacy regulation and how the ePrivacy regulation affects the IoT Industry. Part I also briefly discusses the current regulatory landscape in the United States. Further, Part II investigates why there is a need to regulate the Internet of Things Industry because of growing security and privacy issues. Finally, Part III puts forth recommendations for regulating the internet of things industry by the federal government or Federal Trade Commission (FTC).… Read the rest

ANOTHER BRICK IN THE WALL: The ‘Illinois Brick’ Co-conspirator Exception’s Treatment by United States Circuit Courts

A note by Preslav Mantchev

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The Supreme Court’s 1977 ruling in Illinois Brick Company v. Illinois profoundly shaped private antitrust enforcement at the federal level in the United States. Yet, the Supreme Court’s avoidance of subsequent questions stemming from its Illinois Brick ruling has created a circuit split regarding plaintiff standing in cases involving anticompetitive behavior by multiple co-conspirators. This Note examines the origins of this “co-conspirator” exception to Illinois Brick and analyzes the differences in the exception’s treatment by circuit courts across the United States in order to promote a clearer, more-uniform application of the legal theory going forward.… Read the rest

REVERSE ENGINEERING: Reconciling Trade Secret Law with 3D Printing and Scanning

A note by Prateek Viswanathan

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This Note proposes requiring competitors to sell original products if they reverse engineer competing products with 3D scanning and printing. This proposal would mitigate market destructive effects by providing first inventors lead time to recoup R&D expenses.  Part II of this Note provides background on 3D printing and scanning, Illinois’s trade secrecy law, and reverse engineering. Part III analyzes how 3D printing and scanning may make reverse engineering market destructive and stress the patent system. Part IV proposes a localized solution by amending Illinois’s statute to require originality in competing products.… Read the rest

WHAT HAVE YOU DONE FOR ME LATELY? How the ‘Value of a Standard’ Should be Apportioned in FRAND Licensing Royalties

A note by Matt Pham

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Although well-intentioned to mitigate patent holdup risks, recent case law on Standard Essential Patents and FRAND Licensing misses the mark on how a standard adds value to a technology and vice versa. Considering that technologies are not arbitrarily selected, the value of a standard is likely enriched by the inherent properties of its adopted technologies, justifying its inclusion within the relevant royalties. The inclusion of a standard’s value thus does not necessarily factor in any wrongful holdup value and would, to the contrary, mitigate any patent holdout concerns.  This note will explain how technologies contribute to the value of a standard and justify the standard’s inclusion in a FRAND royalty rate. This note will also show how the actual contribution of SSOs to a standard’s value can be distinguished in order to justify a lower FRAND royalty rate.… Read the rest

RIDESHARING & REGULATION: How Ridesharing Apps are Regulated and How They Should be Regulated

A note by Dawson Oler

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This note will discuss the question of whether Uber should be legally classified as a technology company or a private taxi company. Uber should be classified as a taxi company because although they consider themselves merely a technological intermediary between passenger and driver, their practice is more similar to a taxi company. Like a taxi company, transportation is its main supply and without it, the service would not exist. In addition, classifying Uber as a taxi company protects consumers. Part II of this note will provide more background into this question and how courts have grappled with it in the past. Part III of this note will analyze the way ride-sharing apps like Uber have been regulated since they first came into existence. Part IV recommends that other states follow the example of one particularly innovative state who found a solution … Read the rest