Behind the Scenes | Volume 2, Issue 9
DAA Releases Guidance for Mobile Advertisers
Tenth Circuit Rules on Keyword Advertising in 1-800-Contacts Case
The blurry state of the law regarding keyword advertising got a little clearer last month when the US Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit held that purchasing search engine keywords containing third party trademarks does not inherently infringe those marks (1-800 Contacts, Inc. v. Lens.com, Inc., 2013 WL 3665627).
August 8, 2013
Mobile App and Web Advertising Guidelines Released
The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), along with other stakeholders, recently released the “Mobile Web Advertisement Measurement Guidelines” (the Guidelines), rules for determining the performance and effectiveness of mobile marketing campaigns. The Guidelines apply specifically to ads designed to be served in a mobile web environment (such as from a mobile version of a website), as opposed to ads served by other means (such as via SMS or mobile applications).
August 2, 2013
Data Security & Privacy
AssertID Inc. Submits Parental Verification Method for Approval
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently announced that AssertID Inc. submitted a parental verification method, “ConsentID,” for approval under the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule (the Rule). The Rule provides several options for online websites directed at children under the age of 13 to obtain verifiable parental consent, but also includes a provision permitting entities to submit new methods for approval. In sum, ConsentID is a portal that permits parents to register and view child-directed websites from a central location. Websites will be able to register with the portal and provide all information that is required to be presented under the Rule. When a child submits a request to engage with a website, ConsentID will send the parent a notification. Parents will also be able to pre-approve websites with which their children may interact. The federal register notice will be published shortly, and the comment period will be open until September 20, 2013.
World of Warcraft Slays Plaintiff in Data Breach Battle
Blizzard Entertainment (Blizzard) scored a victory recently when a California federal court dismissed claims by video game users who alleged that they were harmed when hackers accessed their email addresses, security questions, and scrambled passwords in a data breach of Blizzard Entertainment’s website “Battle.net.” The court agreed with Blizzard’s arguments that the users’ alleged harm — increased risk of future identity theft and diminution of the value of their video games — was insufficient to maintain their claims.
August 19, 2013
Fashion Counsel: Urban Outfitters Class Action Suit Raises Consumer Data Collection Questions
Last month,Time Style reported that a class action law suit was filed against Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie for allegedly leading customers to believe that they needed to provide their zip code to complete a purchase. In stores, retailers often collect customer data at the transaction point, but as seen in the Urban Outfitters/Anthropologie case, it is problematic as the US moves towards considering certain types of data, like zip code and email, sensitive.
August 15, 2013
Fashion & Entertainment
Men Can Wear Jewelry Too: Court Permits Sex-Bias Claim Against Accessories Company to Proceed
The United States District Court for the District of Alabama recently permitted a male’s sex-bias claim to proceed against Charming Charlie, a women’s accessories company with over 200 locations, after the company’s manager allegedly made sexist comments about men during the hiring process and failed to establish a start date after offering employment to the plaintiff. Owen v. Charming Charlie, No. 13-S-1009-S, 2013 WL 3968658 (N.D. Ala. July 31, 2013).
August 12, 2013
US and China Announce Results of First Joint Crackdown on Counterfeit Luxury Goods
Overcoming the challenges of fighting organized crime networks involved in industrial scale illicit trade and counterfeiting, international partnerships recently led to 6,000 arrests and the seizure of 24 million fake goods worth nearly $133 million US dollars during INTERPOL-led operations codenamed “Black Poseidon II” (Europe), “Etosha” (Africa), “Hurricane” (Asia), and “Pacific” (the Americas) in May and June. Seized goods included fake consumer electronics, DVDs, mobile phones, tobacco, and cooking oil.
August 7, 2013
Instagram Leader in Consumer Engagement
A recent study, the “Intelligence Report: Social Platforms” by the L2 Think Tank recently found that visual content may be more likely to engage consumers than other types of social platforms. It indicated that Instagram showed 18 times the amount of consumer engagement than Facebook and 48 times that of Twitter. In fact, even some brands lacking an Instagram account show high numbers for consumer engagement due to the use of hashtags. For example, more than 2.7 million images have been posted with the hashtag “#Chanel.” The study also found that other visual platforms such as Pinterest and Vine do not have as many users as Instagram, but that they are still useful for consumer engagement. That being said, it is noted that there is no real value in joining a social media platform if a brand’s customer base is not there. While Facebook remains the platform with the most reach, there is value in engaging with other platforms — especially some of the more visual ones.
NTIA Releases Draft Mobile App Rules
The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) recently released draft rules for engaging consumers through the mobile app space, entitled the “Short form Notice Code of Conduct to Promote Transparency in Mobile App Practices.” Most notably, the draft code calls for mobile app providers to provide short form privacy notices prior to download or purchase of an app to disclose the app’s practices regarding collection of certain personal information. The notice requirement is triggered whenever the information is being shared with third parties, such as advertising networks, data analytics providers, government entities, and other apps. The exceptions to the code mirror the exceptions present under Gramm-Leach Bliley. An additional exception is made for information that is submitted by a user, but not requested by the app. As the issue of consumer privacy continues to take center stage, this code provides useful information for mitigating the risk of a complaint.