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Category Archives: Legislation

Public Release of CRS Reports: FAQ for Congressional Staff

Via FAS – CRS announcement, June 22, 2018: “On March 23, 2018, the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2018 was signed into law. The law directed the Librarian of Congress, in consultation with the CRS Director, to establish and maintain a public website that will contain written CRS products available on CRS.gov. In response, the Library and… Continue Reading

Social Security: What Would Happen If the Trust Funds Ran Out?

Via EveryCRSReport.com – Social Security: What Would Happen If the Trust Funds Ran Out? June 11, 2018: “Social Security’s receipts and expenditures are accounted for through two federal trust funds: the Federal Old-Age and Survivors Insurance (OASI) Trust Fund and the Federal Disability Insurance (DI) Trust Fund. Under their intermediate assumptions and under current law,… Continue Reading

Coming in from the Cold: A Safe Harbor from the CFAA and DMCA §1201

“The Assembly program is pleased to announce a new publication, titled Coming in from the Cold: A Safe Harbor from the CFAA and DMCA §1201, written by Harvard Law School student Daniel Etcovitch and 2017 Assembly cohort member Thyla van der Merwe. The paper proposes a statutory safe harbor from the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act… Continue Reading

Lessig – Congress’ Latest Move to Extend Copyright Protection Is Misguide

Lawrence Lessig – Wired [Lawrence Lessig (@lessig) is the Roy L. Furman professor of law and leadership at Harvard University and founder of Equal Citizens. He was lead counsel in Eldred v. Ashcroft (2002)]: “Almost exactly 20 years ago, Congress passed the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act, which extended the term of existing copyrights… Continue Reading

The Chemical Industry Scores a Big Win at the E.P.A.

The New York Times – The Chemical Industry Scores a Big Win at the E.P.A. – “The Trump administration, after heavy lobbying by the chemical industry, is scaling back the way the federal government determines health and safety risks associated with the most dangerous chemicals on the market, documents from the Environmental Protection Agency show. Under… Continue Reading

The Do Not Call List Failed – Now Robocalls Are Out of Control

Slate – Congratulations! You Lost. The Do Not Call list was supposed to defeat telemarketers. Now scammy robocalls are out of control. What happened? “….The problem is not that the government isn’t enforcing the Do Not Call list. It’s not that it isn’t upholding laws banning automated calls to cellphones. Instead, it’s that telecom giants… Continue Reading

U.S. Department of State Personnel: Background and Selected Issues for Congress

CRS report via FAS – U.S. Department of State Personnel: Background and Selected Issues for Congress. Cory R. Gill, Analyst in Foreign Affairs. May 18, 2018. “Shortly after his confirmation as Secretary of State in April 2018, Secretary Mike Pompeo lifted the hiring freeze that former Secretary Rex Tillerson left in place for over a… Continue Reading

(Robo)Call Me Maybe: Robocalls to Wireless Phones Under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act

CRS report via FAS – (Robo)Call Me Maybe: Robocalls to Wireless Phones Under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, Kathleen Ann Ruane, Legislative Attorney. May 29, 2018. “Robocalls—calls placed using an automated dialing system or artificial or prerecorded voice—are on the rise. Advances in technology have made it cheaper and easier than ever to dial millions… Continue Reading

Yale Law School Consumer Arbitration Data Archive

“On May 21, 2018, a United States Supreme Court majority held in Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis, 584 U.S. ___ (2018) (link is external), that, “Congress has instructed in the Arbitration Act that arbitration agreements providiing for individual proceedings must be enforced, and neither the Arbitration Act’s saving clause nor the NLRA suggests otherwise.” In… Continue Reading

Supreme Court decision – companies can use arbitration clauses to block employees class action suits

The New York Times: “The Supreme Court on Monday ruled that companies can use arbitration clauses in employment contracts to prohibit workers from banding together to take legal action over workplace issues. The vote was 5 to 4, with the court’s more conservative justices in the majority. The court’s decision could affect some 25 million… Continue Reading

UK – Internet Safety Strategy green paper

“The Internet Safety Strategy looks at how we can ensure Britain is the safest place in the world to be online. The Strategy considers the responsibilities of companies to their users, the use of technical solutions to prevent online harms and government’s role in supporting users. The consultation covered various aspects of online safety including:… Continue Reading

WaPo More than 210,000 students have experienced gun violence at school since Columbine

The wider more accurate statistics and graphics on how gun violence has impacted students in American schools since Columbine [1999]: “The Washington Post has spent the past year determining how many children have been exposed to gun violence during school hours since the Columbine High massacre in 1999. Beyond the dead and wounded, children who… Continue Reading