101 Things You Need to Know about Internet Law

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101 Things You Need to Know about Internet Law is the first complete guide to Internet Law prepared for e-business people. Entertaining and accessible, this book is a concise and comprehensive guide to the legal issues and answers involved in all facets of electronic commerce. Prospective e-business people will learn about:
  • contracts
  • taxes
  • rights
  • options
  • obligations
  • limitations
  • relations
  • liabilities
  • debt collection
  • advertising
  • billing
  • refunds
  • intellectual property protection
  • and eighty-eight other essential bits of information.

This book will save time and money by helping them avoid common Internet legal problems.
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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
101 Things You Need to Know About Internet Law is the first complete guide to Internet law prepared for e-business people. Entertaining and accessible, this book is a concise and comprehensive guide to the legal issues and answers involved in all facets of electronic commerce. Prospective e-business people will learn about contracts, taxes, rights, options, obligations, limitations, relations, liabilities, debt collection, advertising, billing, refunds, intellectual property protection, and 88 other essential bits of information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780609806333
  • Publisher: Crown Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 12/5/2000
  • Edition description: 1 ED
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 5.17 (w) x 7.98 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Jonathan Bick splits his professional life between academia and the practice of law. In addition to representing a wide range of clients in connection with Internet law and e-commerce matters at the national law firm of Greenberg Traurig, he teaches at Pace Law School and Rutgers Law School, among others, and writes about Internet law. He lives in Short Hills, New Jersey.
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Read an Excerpt

1 A parent is almost never liable for a child's bad acts on the Internet.

Three sets of apprehensive parents approached me recently. Each had a child who was particularly skilled in using the Internet, and each was worried that they might be liable for something their child had done while online. The first set of parents had a child who published an arguably libelous statement about a classmate as part of an e-magazine that he created and that could be accessed only via the Internet. The mother of the classmate had threatened to sue the parents for what their child had published.

The second set of parents had a child who accessed the Internet at home and showed a younger friend a pornographic Internet site, which allegedly caused his friend to have a string of nightmares. The parents of the Internet user were afraid that the parents of his friend would sue them.

The third set of parents had a daughter in middle school who used the Internet to access a retail store's web site and allegedly changed the content of the site, causing a rash of undesirable orders. The store contacted the child's parents and asked that they pay the store enough to cover the cost of processing the erroneous orders and the consequent loss of profits.

In the past, courts have found that parents are liable and legally responsible for wrongful actions and damages done by their children on the grounds that parents have a unique relationship with their children. This basis for liability is known as the "family purpose doctrine."

However, in recent years, courts in most states have rejected the family purpose doctrine. They have ruled that negligence cannot be imputed to aparent simply because of this "unique relationship" and that a parent is not generally liable for the bad acts of a child unless there is some element of participation by that parent. The advent of the Internet has not changed this conclusion.

If parents allow their children access to the Internet, doing so is not sufficient to rise to the level of participation. A parent is liable for the bad acts of his or her children only if the parent had certain knowledge and opportunity to take action but failed to do so when there was good reason to believe it likely that their children would cause injury to others.

The fact that a parent knows that his or her child has access to and skill in using the Internet and is aware of the child's tendency to use it recklessly or harmfully is usually not sufficient to make the parent liable for torts (damage or harm) done by the child. This is particularly the case when there is nothing to show that the parent had any knowledge, or foreknowledge, or a particular line of conduct on the part of the child.

Summary: Parents are responsible and liable for harmful actions by their children on the Internet to the degree that they have reasonable knowledge that their children may do or actually are doing such harm, have the opportunity to take action to prevent such behavior, and fail to do so.

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Table of Contents

1 A parent is almost never liable for a child's bad acts on the Internet 1
2 To make Internet contracts enforceable, simply have proof of written, signed terms 2
3 To avoid out-of-state liability when using web ads, avoid out-of-state contacts 5
4 Web site advertisement publishers are almost never liable for customers' advertisements 7
5 What can legally be done if a person impersonates another on the Internet 9
6 Buying and selling medicine on the Internet is legal 12
7 Spamming is generally not illegal ... but one California court ruled spam e-mail to be illegal trespass 17
8 Sweepstakes and other Internet games of chance are legal 19
9 An Internet site's activities can result in an out-of-state suit 20
10 Internet credit card transactions will be afforded the same standard of protection as all other credit card transactions 23
11 Trademark names and e-linking are subject to legal scrutiny 26
12 Internet banking is legal 27
13 Unencrypted Internet communication is not usually protected by attorney-client privilege 30
14 Internet business methods can be patented 33
15 License - don't sell - Internet domain names 36
16 Internet privacy rights are scarce 41
17 E-commerce data collection is subject to legal limitations 46
18 The Constitution limits a court's ability to make an Internet site owner subject to an out-of-state suit 48
19 Internet repossessions are legal 51
20 Internet service providers (ISPs) are protected from legal liability for certain actions of their clients 54
21 Protect domain names by securing trademark rights first 56
22 An Internet service agreement has some standard elements 58
23 Legal notices that are properly placed on a web site will minimize or eliminate legal liability 63
24 Changes in trademark laws have resulted in changes in domain name dispute outcomes 64
25 Internet telemedicine patients have fewer rights than traditional patients 66
26 Applying suitability legal concept to e-stock brokers 68
27 Current laws do not fully protect the privacy of information in the possession of an Internet Service provider 70
28 Workplace privacy is nearly nonexistent 72
29 The Internet may soon be deemed a public accommodation for the visually impaired 75
30 Personal jurisdictions are in flux with respect to the Internet 77
31 The Internet can provide legal notice 79
32 Consider European comparative advertising legal limitations when preparing Internet advertisements 81
33 Commercial Internet web site content is protected by the First Amendment 84
34 Internet auctions result in legal contracts 85
35 Internet transactions can result in "choice-of-law" difficulties 87
36 U.S. legal limitations apply to international Internet services 89
37 International law limits use of Internet digital signatures 91
38 State laws limit physicians' use of the Internet 94
39 European Internet signature legal limitations differ among countries 98
40 International laws extend internet service providers' content liability 99
41 Most proposed Internet legislation is not likely to be implemented 101
42 Digital certificates do not usually provide significant legal rights 102
43 Internet loans are lawful 104
44 Internet insurance addresses new risks 106
45 Internet wagering is generally illegal 108
46 Some Internet content is legally free to use 110
47 Internet nondisclosure agreements have unique features 112
48 Internet investment advisers require special legal precautions 114
49 Taxation of European e-commerce differs among countries 117
50 Using Internet materials may increase legal risk 120
51 E-business is particularly susceptible to nine legal perils 122
52 International program license agreements are important for e-commerce outside the United States 125
53 The responsibility for content control by Internet service providers varies in Europe 127
54 Some countries legally protect personal data stored on the Internet 130
55 Worldwide Internet e-data legal protection varies 132
56 Internet signatures can be legally acceptable 134
57 Internet patents are subject to legal testing 136
58 Internet proxies are lawful 137
59 Internet intellectual property transfers must apply state law 139
60 Internet message encryption laws diverge 141
61 Internet chemical purchases are subject to recipients' jurisdictional rules 142
62 International e-privacy laws are primarily voluntary 144
63 International e-copyright laws are in flux 146
64 Clicking "I agree" has different meanings around the world 148
65 Global e-buyers beware 150
66 International e-broadcasting legal rules are country specific 151
67 Special legal liability is associated with e-promotions 153
68 Typical domain name cease-and-desist letter 155
69 Reply to domain name cease-and-desist letter 158
70 The FCC has begun to regulate the Internet 159
71 Selling wine via the Internet is lawful 161
72 E-commerce infrastructure builder contracts require special elements 163
73 Forty-three state laws recognize digital signatures 166
74 The Federal Trade Commission has begun to regulate the Internet 168
75 The Internet is a litigation tool 170
76 The Internet is an evidentiary source 172
77 Internet legal evidence results in new legal difficulties 174
78 Promotion agency agreements for Internet services are advisable 175
79 E-mail is legally discoverable 179
80 Internet crimes and violations are emerging 181
81 Reducing e-law risks is possible 184
82 Dot-com liability insurance contracts address legal risk 186
83 Copying, printing, and redistributing e-data are generally lawful 187
84 How can I protect my name on the Internet? Register it with many variations 189
85 Additional legal activity may be required to protect certain e-names 192
86 What can be done if someone links to a web site without permission? 196
87 Using the Internet to find Internet law is easy but may be inaccurate 198
88 Legally assigning Internet content usually requires a customized contract 199
89 Internet hijacking is unlawful without content 201
90 Unauthorized framing is usually unlawful 203
91 Image (IMG) links normally increase legal liability 205
92 Offering securities through the Internet has legal limitations 206
93 E-notices help protect copyrights 207
94 Internet publicity releases help to limit legal liability 209
95 An e-content writer's contract may be a work-for-hire agreement 211
96 Internet employment services agreements usually protect one party 213
97 Securities brokers' obligations apply to clients' Internet trading 214
98 WebTrust seal providers are liable to the public 218
99 Obscenity and indecency e-content regulation on the Internet is in flux 220
100 Some public access to the Internet is legally limited 222
101 Taxes apply to Internet transactions 223
Appendix 226
Index 229
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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 9, 2002

    Interesting Topics covered here

    The 'Net at one time was a kind of 'Wild West' in that it was anarchy at its finest, with no beginning or no ending. However over time, commercial interests as well as private interests, or even just the average user wondered what kind of laws covered the 'Net? This book attempts to answer that question. Like its title says, it covers 101 legal topics about the Internet, everything from how binding 'legal contracts' are, to on-line liability, how much privacy do you have online, is spam legal, advertising, medical practices, protecting your name and/or domain online, and so on. The book covers some fascinating areas in addition to the topics I've just listed. The book is a valuable reference if you spend any time online, whether you're a part-time web surfer, do any online business, or have a company that relies heavily on the 'Net to make money.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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