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Craigslist Gets a $40 Million CAN-SPAM Judgment

CircleID CircleID: Classified ad site craigslist is famously protective of its contents. While they are happy for search engines like Google to index the listings, they really, really do not like third parties to scrape and republish their content in other forms. In 2013 craigslist sued a company called 3taps which had created an API for craigslist data. They also sued real estate site Padmapper, which showed craigslist and other apartment listings on a map, something craigslist didn't do at the time. After extensive legal wrangling, 3taps eventually gave up and in 2015 paid craigslist $1 million and shut down. Craigslist donated the money to the EFF which was a little odd since the EFF had generally supported 3taps.

One of 3taps' other customers was another real estate site Radpad, which kept showing craigslist listings after 3taps shut down.

Radpad has since gone bankrupt, and last week the court accepted and the bankruptcy administrator did not contest an impressive settlement with craigslist.

It lists all of the bad stuff that craigslist alleged that Radpad did, including copyright infringement of about 130 craigslist listings, scraping 80,000 people's contact information from craigslist, and sending them 400,000 e-mail messages through craigslist's system in violation of CAN SPAM. (The particular violations alleged were fake return addresses and fake subject lines to make it appear that the messages were from a live person.) A detailed injunction forbids Radpad to do any of the things craigslist objected to.

The interesting piece is the damages: $60.5 million, of which $40 million is CAN-SPAM damages for the 400,000 messages at $100 each. I think that's the largest CAN-SPAM judgment ever.

It's worth noting that Radpad initially denied all of craigslist's allegations, but stopped defending the case when they went bankrupt. The bankruptcy administrator was not a target of the suit. They just added the judgment to the pile of claims against Radpad that are unlikely ever to be paid.

The judgment does allow craigslist to keep pursuing the people who did the scraping, so it's possible we haven't yet heard the last of this case.
Written by John Levine, Author, Consultant & SpeakerFollow CircleID on TwitterMore under: Law, Spam

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German cabinet OKs fines up to $53M for social networks that don’t delete hate speech fast

A couple weeks ago we wrote about Germany taking hate speech and fake news seriously. In an article out from Reuters it looks like the fines are going to be huge and I would expect companies either pulling out of Germany or moderating a lot of content. From the article: Germany has some of the […]

The post German cabinet OKs fines up to $53M for social networks that don’t delete hate speech fast appeared first on TheDomains.com.

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Studying .BRAND New gTLDs

CircleID CircleID: Many participants in the latest ICANN meeting in Copenhagen asked that same question: "when is the next round of the ICANN new gTLD program?". If the question came from new gTLD service providers, I also noticed that it was different from "the first round": now the question focuses more on .BRANDs rather than Generic TLDs dedicated to selling domain names. The question also comes more from representatives of certain Trademarks who want to acquire a .BRAND domain name extension.

When is the next round?

There have been dozens of publications with that same title and no answer inside. I recently read a publication saying that it could be between 2020 and 2025. I also asked the question publicly at the latest ICANN meeting in Copenhagen and was told that the answer would remain the same as when previously asked in other ICANN forum sessions; no one knows, and the reason is simple: a few things like "singular and plural domain name extensions" must be fixed for the next round.

A "date" is not the only question anymore

Now more Trademarks have started to use their domain name extension. The Dot Brand Observatory has published a certain number of case studies which answer the second most important question for Trademarks willing to apply for their personalized TLD: what to do with a .BRAND new gTLD?

Trademarks such as SEAT, FAGE, LECLERC, BNPPARIBAS, SENER, JCB, CITIC GROUP, BRADESCO, DNP and BARCLAYS do the show in published case studies and more will be added.

"Leclerc" for example, is a French supermarket and hypermarket chain. The 26 pages study says that it is developing its .brand TLD in a progressive and consistent approach: second level domains correspond to product categories, keywords or specialized stores. An example of a live website is www.sport.leclerc.

"Bradesco", a financial company from Brazil, has 114 domain name registered. Note that this is a lot for a .BRAND applicant since none of these domain names are sold: they belong to the registry (Bradesco here) who pays to renew them, unlike a generic registry who has registrants to buy them from registrars. Bradesco uses its personalized domains but also uses a "redirect" strategy. 45 domain names are redirected: 9 of them to the main welcome page and the 36 others are pointing to relevant correspond pages (consorcios.bradesco redirects to www.bradesco.com.br/html/classic/produtosservicos/consorcios/index.shtm).

"Usage is key"

If the initial speech on .BRAND new gTLDs has long been negative due to the incredibly high cost to submit ICANN an application, ".brand" new gTLD registration volumes now clearly show that applicants want to activate the full potential of their domain name extension.

If registration volumes are a nebulous indicator in regard to generic gTLDs dedicated to selling domain names, they are a good indicator that .BRAND new gTLDs are deploying since a .BRAND applicant has no reason to activate domain names just to say: "hey: my registry has thousands of live domains registered". A .BRAND applicant does not need to attract customers to buy its domain names since it does not sell them.

When digging in the Dot Brand Observatory websites, there is a page dedicated to "Volume of domains”: MMA, Audi, NRA and Abbott are applicants to be using more than 100 ".brand" domain names: this is not what we call a defensive strategy which consists in acquiring a .BRAND domain name extension for the sole purpose of securing the Trademark's assets.

This is real usage.
Written by Jean Guillon, New generic Top-Level Domains' specialistFollow CircleID on TwitterMore under: Top-Level Domains

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Did you really expect all the new gTLDs to be a success?

Morgan Linton Morgan Linton: So it’s no secret that new gTLDs have been in the news even more than usual lately. A lot of this was kicked-off earlier this month when Frank decided to increase the renewal prices on a bunch of new new gTLDs which seemed to ripple through the domain industry in a major way. I wrote […]

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Trump Administration Backs Repeal of Broadband Privacy Rules

CircleID CircleID: "In a defeat for digital privacy advocates, the House of Representatives voted Tuesday to allow internet service providers to sell information about consumers’ browsing history without their knowledge or consent," Molly Olmstead reporting in Slate. "The bill repeals FCC the broadband privacy rules passed during the final months of the Obama administration. In addition to protecting customer data, the rules, which never had a chance to go into effect, also required the providers to notify customers when they experienced a data breach. The Senate voted to revoke the rules last week."
Follow CircleID on TwitterMore under: Broadband, Policy & Regulation, Privacy

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Certified Internet Pharmacy Criminally Charged for Conspiring to Sell Foreign-Made Drugs

CircleID CircleID: "Yet ANOTHER CIPA- and PharmacyChecker-certified internet pharmacy criminally charged for selling bad, non-Canadian medicines," John Horton reporting in LegitScript blog. "Yet another supposedly 'Canadian' internet pharmacy certified by PharmacyChecker and the 'Canadian' International Pharmacy Association (CIPA) has been criminally charged with conspiracy to sell unapproved, misbranded drugs and money laundering. According to the DOJ's press release, the drugs were not really from Canada." Horton writes that "the website names, such as 'Canadian Pharmacy Meds' indicate that they are Canadian internet pharmacies, and they are approved by these two “credible” organizations..."
Follow CircleID on TwitterMore under: Domain Names, Registry Services, Law, Policy & Regulation

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