As attorneys who run law firms, we try really hard to land new clients. With every potential lead, we try our best to please the potential client and serve them well. Now it appears that scammers are using our professionalism against us in a new scam.
A lot of people have great ideas as well as the desire to follow their dreams and work on their ideas. But there are many hurdles and barriers standing in the way. The number one hurdle, at least in my case, is fear.
But fear could be healthy. Many years ago when I was trying to make a living racing motorcycles, my mentor used to tell me: “fear is good.” That didn’t make much sense at first. After all, this was around the same time everyone was parading around with those “NO FEAR” stickers. How could fear be good? I thought fear made me weak and kept me from reaching my full potential.
In time, however, I came to appreciate fear.
7PM. The hallway is empty. I walk by neatly organized desks and not-so-neatly organized offices. This is the last time I will be walking down this corridor for a while … Look down toward the Statute of Liberty one last time. Good bye from the top of NYC!
I have taken the almost unthinkable step: quitting a $200k job as an associate attorney at a big law firm without a replacement position. Am I crazy? Some friends sure think so. Who would give up such a sought after position that almost every law student fight for three years to land?
Going after anonymous commenters or posters who make defamatory statements is possible, as illustrated by a Federal Court ruling in Delaware recently. In Getaway.com LLC v. John Does 1-26 (Civ. No. 15-531-SLR, District of Delaware), a federal judge in Delaware allowed a website owner’s defamation lawsuit against 26 anonymous commenters to go forward and issued a subpoena ordering a third party website (which was not sued) where the defamatory statements were posted to turn over account information for the posters of those statements, including their IP addresses. The victim can then subpoena the subscriber information from Internet service providers, based on the IP addresses obtained from the website.
This case illustrates 3 crucial points about pursuing an online defamation claim:
- A victim can ask the court to help uncover the identities of anonymous commenters in order to sue them
- A victim can have access to federal courts even though defamation is a state law claim
- Substitute service of process for the subpoena to issue can be done by posting a notice where the anonymous defamatory statements were made
As reported by tech dirt, the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) talks failed to produce an agreement and treatment of IP is one of the big sticking points. While many commentators feel that US is being somewhat unreasonable on its position on patents and copyrights, I have a slightly different opinion.
(Maybe. Such a lawyerly answer!)
By now, you have probably heard that possible Russian hackers stole sensitive personal information from the IRS website in at least 104,000 successful attempts over a period of three months or more. It has been reported that the stolen information may have led to at least $50 Million in fraudulent tax refunds. Further, the stolen information exposes the affected taxpayers to the real danger of identity theft. The true loss to affected taxpayers may be much higher.
Some of you may ask: can I sue the IRS if I was affected? That’s a fair question. We tremble at the idea that the IRS will come after our wallets when we make an honest mistake with penalties and interests, wouldn’t it be nice to go after the IRS for its blunder? As is intuitive to most of you, if a private company suffered such a breach, there surely would be lawsuits and settlements ahead. But is the IRS, as a part of the federal government, vulnerable to civil legal actions? The question is a complicated one, and I will attempt to provide some color below.
The same two words started many journeys for me. It almost seems like all my accomplishments in technology started with those words, over and over. It is probably true for most developers…
It is therefore fitting to see these words filling this space when I activated this website. The instruction suggests that I delete them and start blogging with a new post. Yet I find myself wanting to celebrate this post. Let it be the start of a wonderful venture, like many before it.