Monthly Archives: August 2013

August 29, 2013 | ICYMI, News

ICYMI- Industry Groups Join Ad Campaign Against Patent Trolls

Progressive Grocer
Industry Groups Join Ad Campaign Against Patent Trolls
Posted: 8/29/2013 15:21

The National Retail Federation (NRF) and the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) have joined the Internet Association (IA) and the National Restaurant Association (NRA) on a print and radio advertising campaign in targeted states and districts across the United States, urging Congress to end patent abuse and shield American businesses from patent trolls.

The campaign asks voters in multiple states, among them Illinois, Iowa, Nevada, Ohio, Texas, Vermont and Virginia, to request that their Congress members take immediate action to “stop bad patents and stop the trolls.”

“The intentional misuse of the patent system by patent trolls not only crowds our courts with unnecessary lawsuits, but also hampers retailers’ adoption of technology aimed at improving the customer experience,” explained Matthew Shay, president and CEO of Washington, D.C.-based NRF. “Retailers are among the most frequent targets of patent trolls due to the industry’s use of cutting-edge innovations. NRF’s strong position on patent trolls and support for this association-led campaign demonstrates our industry’s commitment to addressing this issue.”

“Supermarkets are increasingly the targets of patent trolls,” added Erik Lieberman, regulatory counsel at Arlington, Va.-based FMI. “In recent months retailers have been sent demand letters or sued for using widely adopted technology, such as store-locater functions and QR codes. The activities of trolls pose an unfair and unnecessary barrier to entrepreneurship, making it harder for retailers to operate their businesses and communicate with customers. Congress must act to address these abuses.”

Patent trolls are draining the economy of $80 billion annually, according to the trade groups, which note that victims have even included charities.

Washington has begun to take notice, however, led by Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) and Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.). Congress is working to deter abusive patent litigation, and the White House has issued a set of legislative proposals as well as executive actions to address the issue. The trade organizations expressed the hope that “bipartisan support to address abusive patent troll legislation will provide some relief to American innovators and entrepreneurs.”

Recent developments on the patent troll issue include a July letter signed by 50 organizations calling for Congress to stop patent abuse, another letter the same month from a group of more than 40 companies from a range of sectors urging Congress to make it easier to challenge low-quality patents, and an August report from the General Accounting Office (GAO) that confirmed patent abuse has a costly impact on U.S. businesses and the economy.

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August 29, 2013 | News, Press Releases

National Internet, Restaurant, Retail and Grocer Associations Launch Ad Campaign Calling on Congress to Stop Patent Trolls

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, The Internet Association (IA), National Restaurant Association (NRA), National Retail Federation (NRF) and the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) launched a print and radio advertising campaign in targeted states and districts across the country urging Congress to put an end to patent abuse and to protect American businesses from patent trolls.

The campaign will ask voters across multiple states—including Illinois, Iowa, Nevada, Ohio, Texas, Vermont, and Virginia, among others—to contact their Congressional representatives and ask them to take action now to “stop bad patents and stop the trolls.”

“Patent trolls use bad patents to bully companies of all sizes, in every economic sector, from coast-to-coast,” said Michael Beckerman, President and CEO, The Internet Association. “This is essentially legalized extortion, forcing hard working businesses to go to court or write a check—money they can’t spend on hiring and growth.”

Patent trolls are draining the economy of $80 billion every year and are targeting an increasingly broad array of businesses—moving on from just technology companies and start-ups—to Main Street businesses like supermarkets, restaurants, and retailers. Even charities have been victimized by patent trolls.

“Litigation demand letters from patent trolls is a significant and growing concern for the restaurant and foodservice industry,” said Scott DeFife, EVP, Policy and Government Affairs, National Restaurant Association. “It is critical that we increase transparency and disclosure around who these companies are in order to change the market dynamics behind these frivolous and litigious claims. We believe that doing so will help provide significant relief for the restaurant and foodservice industry, as well as other end-users of the commonplace technologies often in question. We are hopeful that Congress will examine the patent troll industry this fall, and push for a common-sense solution that protects main street businesses.”

Fortunately, momentum is building to stop patent trolls. Under the leadership of Chairman Goodlatte and Chairman Leahy, Congress is working to make sure the patent system is promoting real innovation and to deter abusive patent litigation. The White House has also issued a set of legislative proposals and issued Executive Actions. We are hopeful that the bi-partisan support to address abusive patent troll legislation will provide some relief to American innovators and entrepreneurs.

“The intentional misuse of the patent system by patent trolls not only crowds our courts with unnecessary lawsuits but also hampers retailers’ adoption of technology aimed at improving the customer experience,” Matthew Shay, President and CEO, National Retail Federation said. “Retailers are among the most frequent targets of patent trolls due to the industry’s use of cutting-edge innovations. NRF’s strong position on patent trolls and support for this association-led campaign demonstrates our industry’s commitment to addressing this issue.”

The ad campaign follows on the heels of a number of recent developments on the patent troll issue. In July, 50 organizations signed on to a letter calling on Congressional leaders to take action to stop patent abuse. Another letter followed later that month from a group of more than 40 companies from a variety of sectors to Congressional leaders urging Congress to make it easier to challenge low quality patents. And last week, the GAO issued a report that confirmed patent abuse has a costly impact on America’s businesses and economy.

“Supermarkets are increasingly the targets of patent trolls. In recent months retailers have been sent demand letters or sued for using widely adopted technology, such as store-locater functions and QR codes,” said Erik Lieberman, Regulatory Counsel, Food Marketing Institute. “The activities of trolls pose an unfair and unnecessary barrier to entrepreneurship, making it harder for retailers to operate their businesses and communicate with customers. Congress must act to address these abuses.”

To learn more and view/hear the ads, go to http://www.stopbadpatents.com/.

 

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August 29, 2013 | ICYMI, News

ICYMI- Ad Campaign Asks Consumers to Tell Congress to Stop Patent Trolls

Adweek
Ad Campaign Asks Consumers to Tell Congress to Stop Patent Trolls
August 29, 2013, 8:00 AM EDT

Congress may be out of town, but that doesn’t mean it can hide from Beltway lobbyists. Giving lawmakers a little nudge to make sure they keep their promise to take up patent reform legislation addressing patent troll abuses when Congress returns Sept. 9, four associations are launching an ad campaign tomorrow in 17 states.

Both the print and radio ads are running in states and districts of lawmakers that sit on the committees of jurisdiction for the issue, such as Virginia, home to Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R), chairman of the House judiciary committee; and Vermont, home to Senate judiciary chairman Patrick Leahy (D). Other states include Illinois, Iowa, Nevada, Ohio and Texas.

A 60-second radio ad starts tomorrow and will run for a week. The full-page print ad will run in the Sunday editions of papers such as the Des Moines Register, the Hartford Courant and the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

Aimed at local business owners, the radio ad asks the listener to “imagine you start the business of your dreams” only to have it be ruined by a patent troll that bullies the business owner with a letter threatening a lawsuit over a common business practice unless you pay $100,000.

“Because these trolls suck $80 billion a year out of our economy, they won’t stop until Congress makes them. Go to stopbadpatents.com. Tell Congress to stop bad patents and stop the trolls,” the radio ad says.

Four associations are behind the campaign: The Internet Association, the National Restaurant Association, the National Retail Federation and the Food Marketing Institute.

“Patent trolls use bad patents to bully companies of all sizes, in every economic sector, from coast to coast,” said Michael Beckerman, president and CEO of the Internet Association. “This is essentially legalized extortion, forcing hard working businesses to go to court or write a check—money they can’t spend on hiring and growth.”

A bill aimed at stopping patent troll abuses is one of the few things that could move in Congress this year. Right before the August recess, a coalition of more than 50 organizations met with Leahy and Goodlatte, who promised draft legislation soon after the August recess.

The campaign could help keep Congress on track.

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August 26, 2013 | ICYMI, News

ICYMI- NSA Revelations Prompt Tech Industry to Call for Privacy Safeguards

CIO Magazine
NSA Revelations Prompt Tech Industry to Call for Privacy Safeguards
Posted Mon, August 26, 2013

Amid the fallout from the revelations of the National Security Agency’s wide-ranging electronic surveillance program, several leading technology trade groups are calling on the White House to temper the data-collection activities with new transparency and privacy provisions.

In a letter to White House Chief of Staff Dennis McDonough and counsel Kathryn Ruemmler, the groups urged the administration to give their member companies more latitude in making public disclosures about the government’s national security data requests.

The groups, which include the Business Software Alliance, the Internet Association and the Software & Information Industry Association, wrote to “encourage the government to revisit limitations on what private companies can disclose about the orders they receive, recognizing that a lack of transparency on this subject may lead consumers to overestimate the scope of these intelligence programs and, thereby, undermine public trust in both industry and the government’s efforts.

“In particular, companies should be allowed to report the number of orders they receive pursuant to U.S. national security or intelligence gathering and surveillance programs, and the number of users or accounts that are the subject of the orders,” they wrote, recommending further that “the government disclose similar information relating to the orders.”

For the tech sector, the national-security requests are an issue of consumer trust and the bottom line. The perception that the government has direct and unlimited access to data stored with tech firms has created yet another obstacle for U.S. cloud providers seeking to do business in foreign markets such as Europe, where government officials are already wary of the privacy implications when data moves across borders.

The trade groups cite an estimate that U.S. cloud computing providers could lose as much as $35 billion over the next three years as a result of the NSA’s PRISM program.

Small wonder, then, that companies like Google and Microsoft have been trying to debunk the notion that their cooperation with government intelligence requests represents any sort of departure from their longstanding compliance with orders from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act courts, and are seeking greater authority to disclose the frequency and extent of the national-security requests they receive.

The new letter from the trade groups seems an effort to present a unified front amplifying those calls.

“One of the most negative consequences of the recent disclosures would be if it were to result in increased barriers to global cross-border data flows,” the groups wrote. “The free flow of data is critical to the continued growth of our global economy, and such free flow is recognized as one of the most important principles of international trade.”

They are calling for U.S. officials to engage with their counterparts in Europe to restore trust in the safe harbor framework governing cross-border data flow between the United States and European Union, the legal mechanism that underpins much of the operations of domestic cloud providers doing business in EU member states.

Additional, the trade groups are appealing for reforms to an aging electronic privacy law that they say no longer makes sense in the age of cloud computing.

They are asking for the White House to endorse the reforms to the 1986 Electronic Privacy Communications Act, or ECPA, that have been introduced in the Senate and would require law enforcement authorities to obtain a warrant to access the contents of electronic communications stored with all cloud providers.

“We urge the Obama Administration to support efforts to pass a clean ECPA bill and oppose efforts to include carve outs to the warrant requirement, which would weaken the privacy protections the bill seeks to establish,” the groups wrote.

At the outset, the groups contend that commercial privacy issues such as targeting advertisements to consumers’ online behavior must be treated separately from the government’s surveillance programs, “as the policy considerations in these two areas are distinct.”

The letter follows a series of meetings that White House officials held earlier this month with industry representatives, privacy advocates and other stakeholders concerning the privacy implications of the government’s intelligence activities.

The tech trade groups say that they are encouraged by President Obama’s directive to the intelligence community to bring more information about PRISM and other similar programs to light, and are calling for a high level of transparency and detail to be included in a new website that will serve as a hub for public information about the government’s activities.

“The tech industry can be a positive force in helping the government achieve a balance between the needs of law enforcement and national security, and the protection of privacy and civil liberties,” says SIIA President Ken Wasch. “A key element in making this work is improving transparency and giving businesses the flexibility to provide consumers with more information about the extent to which government has access to personal information.”

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August 24, 2013 | ICYMI, News, Op-Eds

ICYMI- Uber is a Test of Colorado’s Commitment to Startups

The Denver Post
Uber is a test of Colorado’s commitment to startups
Posted:  08/24/2013 05:01 PM MDT

Colorado’s leaders have spent a great deal of time, energy and money to position the state as a hub for innovation, the Internet economy and entrepreneurship.

In 2011, Gov. John Hickenlooper launched the Colorado Innovation Network (COIN), which is designed to transform Colorado into the most innovative state in the nation.

The results to date are impressive. Forbes ranks Colorado as the fifth-best state in which to do business; the U.S. Chamber of Commerce ranked Colorado second in the nation for entrepreneurship and innovation; and StartUpHire listed Colorado as first for growth in the startup job sector, as the state saw a 170 percent increase in startup employment between 2010 and 2011.

COIN’s second annual summit — which will be held on Wednesday and Thursday in Denver — will bring together Internet entrepreneurs, startups, technologists, venture capitalists and others involved in Colorado’s thriving Internet economy.

When the governor welcomes those leaders and entrepreneurs, they will have one thing on their minds: What will be the fate of Uber Technologies?

The eventual answer — and we realize it can’t be provided at this time — will be paramount in defining Colorado’s commitment to lead the Internet economy. And we recognize that Hickenlooper has personally indicated support for Uber in its clash with state regulators.

Uber is an innovative ride-for-hire service that connects drivers with riders for on-demand transportation. The company is operating in 40 cities worldwide, but it finds itself embroiled in a regulatory dispute with incumbent taxicab companies in Denver who feel threatened by the increased competition.

After more than a year of meetings, Colorado regulators may be on the verge of adopting regulations that would essentially drive Uber out of the state. If the Public Utilities Commission takes this draconian step, Colorado would become the first state to enact rules making it illegal for Uber to operate.

Such a decision would irrevocably harm Colorado’s tech-friendly image and cost the state jobs, investment and opportunity.

Uber has become a litmus test for the Internet economy and the state’s business climate for startups. And it is bigger than just one company. What happens to Uber has implications for some of the fastest growing Internet startups, many of which, like Uber, are disrupting markets long-plagued by inefficiency and entrenched interests. Telling Uber that Colorado is “closed for business” will send a chilling message throughout the Internet economy.

The Internet is a fundamentally disruptive technology. Uber has shaken up an outdated transportation sector unresponsive to consumers and challenged the incumbent operators with a better product and superior customer service. So let’s drop the charade about public safety: entrenched incumbent taxi operators want regulators to shield them from competition.

Uber is not a taxi company or a limousine service. It is an electronic clearinghouse that efficiently connects people seeking rides with a universe of potential drivers. No one would accuse Expedia of operating an airline, but that is exactly what the incumbent taxi operators would have you believe about Uber.

Competition is good for business and good for consumers. Consumers fare best when a market becomes competitive and stays that way. Yet the PUC’s proposed regulations will harm the very consumers they are charged with protecting. Of course consumer protection is important. Rules ensuring safety, preventing fraud and deterring abuse are necessary and proper exercises of regulation. However, what is proposed here is not intended to safeguard consumers, but rather to protect incumbents from new competition — all at consumers’ expense.

Politicians of all stripes like to pay lip service to the Internet economy, extolling the virtues of disruptive technologies, and new and innovative thinking.

Uber presents Colorado with one of the biggest tests in terms of making the the most innovative state in the nation. If it is truly serious about transforming itself into the best state for entrepreneurs and Internet startups, the choice is clear.

The eyes of the Internet economy are watching.

Michael Beckerman is president and chief executive of The Internet Association.

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To read the original article, click here.

 

August 22, 2013 | News, Press Releases, Statements

GAO REPORT: LITIGATION BY PATENT TROLLS IS ON THE RISE, OFTEN USING LOW-QUALITY SOFTWARE PATENTS

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Internet Association today commented on an important new report from the Government Accountability Office that confirmed the rapid rise in patent litigation and noted the increase in litigation by “patent monetization entities” (patent trolls) and the assertion of low-quality patents.

Statement of Michael Beckerman, President and CEO, The Internet Association
“The GAO report demonstrates that abusive patent litigation is out of control, and that patent trolls and low quality patents are to blame. Abusive patent litigation is a hidden tax on our economic recovery that is hurting both consumers and entrepreneurs. And this report only scratches the surface, acknowledging that much of the impact goes undetected. For every lawsuit filed, a company faces many more demand letters, and small companies tend to settle quickly to avoid high litigation costs. Congress must take action to put patent trolls out of business for good.”

Key Findings of the GAO Report

  • Patent infringement lawsuits increased by 31 percent between 2010 and 2011 alone, while litigation involving software-related patents accounted for 89 percent of the increase in defendants between 2007 and 2011.
  • Patent trolls, or “patent monetization entities” (PMEs), which exist solely to assert and litigate patents, sued close to one-third of all defendants in patent infringement suits and accounted for about one half of the overall increase in defendants in recent years. The number of defendants sued by patent trolls tripled in just four years.
  • One patent troll admitted that it preferred to sue end users rather than technology vendors because it could extract larger settlements.
  • The report acknowledges, “in addition to lawsuits, patent assertion occurs without firms ever filing lawsuits.” “[F]or every patent infringement lawsuit filed against [a company], they might receive many times more [demand] letters notifying them of potential infringement and offering licenses.
  • The GAO report also identified low quality patents as a key factor in the increase in litigation. Stakeholders noted that “claims in software-related patents are often overly broad, unclear or both.” Software-related patents were used to sue 93 percent of all defendants in cases brought by patent trolls between 2007 and 2011.
  • Patent litigation can cost a defendant anywhere between $650,000 to $5 million, even when there is no damage award. Discovery costs alone can range from around $350,000 to $3 million. PMEs do not face the same litigation burdens and, the GAO observed, often attract outside investors to fund lawsuits.
  • PMEs exploit these huge potential legal bills to force companies to settle before going to trial. “Of [cases already concluded]…about 86 percent either ended or likely ended in a settlement.
  • Companies tend to “…settle quickly to avoid high litigation costs…even if [the company accused of infringement] know[s] the case against them is weak.”

The Internet Association is the unified voice of the Internet representing the interests of leading Internet companies including: Airbnb, Amazon.com, AOL, eBay, Expedia, Facebook, Gilt, Google, IAC, LinkedIn, Monster Worldwide, Path, Practice Fusion, Rackspace, reddit,Salesforce.com, SurveyMonkey, TripAdvisor, Yahoo!, and Zynga.

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August 21, 2013 | News, Statements

The Internet Association Recommends USPTO Broaden View on Industry Efforts to Reduce Infringement

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Internet Association, the unified voice of the Internet representing the interests of the leading Internet companies including Airbnb, Amazon.com, AOL, eBay, Expedia, Facebook, Gilt, Google, IAC, LinkedIn, Monster Worldwide, Path, Practice Fusion, Rackspace, reddit, Salesforce.com, SurveyMonkey, TripAdvisor, Yahoo!, and Zynga, released the following statement regarding its filing in response to the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) inquiry of industry’s voluntary initiatives to reduce online infringement:

“The Internet Association recommends the USPTO set aside its inquiry of industry’s voluntary initiatives to reduce online infringement for a broader review that looks beyond data and metrics of enforcement mechanisms. By moving forward with its present examination, the USPTO runs the risk of drawing conclusions about our entire copyright system based on only one piece of a complex puzzle.

“Taking a holistic approach will reveal that today’s copyright landscape involves important industry practices, marketplace realities, and consumer behavioral dynamics that all play a role in both the source of and potential solutions to online infringement. For instance, the introduction of legal alternatives to content in certain markets has resulted in dramatic reductions in online infringement. This phenomenon, among others, is largely under-examined.

“We recommend an expansive and balanced investigation to set the stage for a fully informed and meaningful discussion of copyright policy, which will ultimately yield a successful, functioning system.”

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August 21, 2013 | News, Other

The Internet Association’s Comments on PTO Voluntary Best Practices Study

Excerpt: The Internet Association submits the following comment in response to the United States Patent and Trademark Office’s (USPTO) request for comments to inform its “Voluntary Best Practices Study.”  The Internet Association is the unified voice of the Internet economy, representing the interests of leading Internet companies and their global community of users.We are dedicated to advancing public policy solutions to strengthen and protect Internet freedom, foster innovation and economic growth, and empower users.

To read the comment that the Internet Association made, click here.

 

 

 

 

 

August 21, 2013 | ICYMI, News

ICYMI- Group Focuses on How Internet Shapes Biz in DoBro

Brooklyn Downtown Star
Group focuses on how Internet shapes biz in DoBro 
Posted 8/21/2013 7:28:00

Web integration and ways to do business online in the innovative melting pot of Downtown Brooklyn was the topic of the day the Internet Association’s Brooklyn Small Business Crawl on Monday.

Michael Beckerman, president and CEO of The Internet Association, hosted the event at Junior’s on Flatbush Avenue to show how restaurants, small businesses and other companies have integrated the internet into their model.

“We’re doing these all around the country in various congressional districts, in small towns and big cities like here in Brooklyn, to tell the story about how the internet creates jobs in the brick-and-mortar economy,” Beckerman said. “The reality is that non-tech businesses in mainstream America around the country, and here in Brooklyn, are growing.”

Innovators and business representatives from companies like Facebook, Google and others joined Beckerman, Borough President Marty Markowitz and Congressman Hakeem Jefferies for cheesecake at Junior’s before touring Downtown Brooklyn.

“The Internet is not replacing individual interaction and can’t replicate sitting down for a meal at Junior’s,” Beckerman assured. “It’s not a substitution, it just supplements it.”

One stop along the crawl was The Hope Program at 1 Smith St., a not-for-profit employment agency utilizing and providing skills in computer literacy, math, workplace communications and a number of tools for getting people back to work in underserved communities for nearly 30 years.

Irene Camp, development director, joined the group of web innovators to discuss the relevance and importance of integrating into the modern age of web-based technology.

“We have a wide range of people and what they all share is a real commitment to making a change in their lives and entering or reentering the workforce,” she explained.

Camp said the Internet runs through her company’s veins, playing a vital role in communication with referral partners about when programs start, letting clients know how to get involved and performing online assessments to help people find a suitable career path.

She added that 72 percent of their graduates secure employment, 74 percent of which find jobs in the following year.

“Our students, even with the most basic access to the workforce, depend on the ability to use the Internet,” Camp said.

The crawl also included a stop at the GenSpace Lab at 33 Flatbush Ave.

“We had rotary phones when I was growing up, and going from rotary to touchtone was a big exciting, technical move forward,” Markowitz said. “Whether it’s on the little screen, big screen or on our watch, whatever the case may be, there is no question that the Internet is the way, increasingly, the world will do business.

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August 20, 2013 | Letters, News, Press Releases

Tech Groups Urge Stronger Privacy Protections

 

IDEAS ADDRESS CURRENT PROGRAMS’ ADVERSE PRIVACY & ECONOMIC IMPACTS

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Leading technology trade associations are urging the White House and Congress to take new steps to reform government collection of private data — steps that the groups believe will better protect civil liberties while keeping doors open to innovation in the digital economy.

In a letter to the White House on Tuesday, the technology groups — BSA | The Software Alliance; Computer & Communications Industry Association (CCIA); the Information Technology Industry Council (ITI), The Internet Association; SIIA – Software & Information Industry Association; and TechNet — outlined recommendations that would address concerns raised about the U.S. government’s information collection from commercial entities. These steps would:

  • Increase transparency in national security programs;
  • Enhance privacy protections for individuals during law enforcement investigations; and,
  • Promote cross-border data flows that are central to a robust global digital economy.

The recommendations come after representatives from many of these and other organizations participated in discussions at the White House with Chief of Staff Denis McDonough and Counsel Kathryn Ruemmler to examine the steps that the Obama Administration was taking to better address concerns about its surveillance programs, and to seek the input from business and privacy stakeholders on potential additional actions.

The full letter can be read here.   Recommendation highlights include:

Implement appropriate transparency with respect to national security programs. The groups applaud the expanded transparency initiatives that President Obama announced in early August, and urge that the government go farther.

“Implementing such steps to increase transparency can assist in reestablishing trust, both domestically and globally. Measures taken to be more transparent with respect to government information collection, now and in the future, should be pursued globally,” the letter states.

Support reforms to the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) that would enhance privacy in law enforcement investigations. The technology associations note that ECPA, signed into law in 1986, has not been updated significantly in the subsequent years, even though the pace of technology and innovation has advanced manifold.

“The standards in the law are outdated and are not interpreted consistently. These standards need to be simplified and provide clearer privacy protections for users,” the letter explains. “Bipartisan legislation, sponsored by Senators Leahy and Lee, would update ECPA and, generally, would require law enforcement to obtain a warrant for the content of all stored electronic communications. We urge the Obama Administration to support efforts to pass a clean ECPA bill and oppose efforts to include carve outs to the warrant requirement, which would weaken the privacy protections the bill seeks to establish.”

Promote policies that allow for unimpeded cross-border data flows. The groups expressed strong concern internationally about disclosures about the U.S. government’s surveillance programs could carry significant impact on the global economy. One report recently noted that that the U.S. cloud computing industry alone could lose up to $35 billion during the next three years.

“The free flow of data is critical to the continued growth of our global economy, and such free flow is recognized as one of the most important principles of international trade. We are already seeing longstanding and effective cross-border data mechanisms being questioned in light of the recent disclosures about the U.S. government surveillance programs,” the letter states. “A number of multilateral fora in which the U.S. government participates may be appropriate venues to engage with the international community on preserving cross-border data flows while addressing privacy and civil liberties concerns . . . We encourage the U.S. government to identify opportunities to build on the work of these fora to foster interoperability between privacy regimes. In addition, these fora could provide appropriate venues for work on increased transparency globally for government collection of data.”

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Top Internet Business Leaders Confirmed To Speak At Internet Association’s Third Annual Virtuous Circle Summit BECKERMAN: “The value of the Virtuous Circle Summit is the conversations that take place when you bring together the leading voices in the internet innovation and policy space.” Washington, DC — Today, Internet Association announced its initial list of confirmed speakers Read more »

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