Did you know that when you buy a mobile phone, you waive any right to privacy in your movements? Did you know that your voluntary decision to use a mobile phone is a voluntary decision to let the government track you wherever you go?
Such a state of affairs might seem to defy common sense. It might seem like the premise of a dystopian science fiction movie. But in Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi, it is currently what federal statutory law and the Constitution permit. In a case decided last week, the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, which has jurisdiction over those three states, ruled that location information revealed by cell phone tower records is not something in which citizens have a “reasonable expectation of privacy.” These records can provide extremely accurate details on a person’s movement and whereabouts at any given time.
Location privacy is one of many legal questions made more complicated by modern digital technologies. But the Supreme Court has strongly hinted that location privacy is important and should be protected by the Constitution. Last year in United States v. Jones, the Court ruled that the police need a warrant before they place a GPS tracking device on a private car. A majority of the Court seemed anxious about the risk to civil liberties posed by the vast amounts of data about our lives newly available in the digital era.
But Jones involved surveillance carried out by a physical device planted on a car, not pure data held by others. The Court has not addressed this more important question of surveillance based on data obtained from third parties. Other courts have, however, and have not always agreed with the Fifth Circuit. Last month the New Jersey Supreme Court reached the opposite conclusion, reasoning that warrants are required before the police can monitor a person’s movements, whether using location data from phones or GPS devices. Massachusetts’s high court has reached a similar decision.
The new form of data-based surveillance raises a simple question: Should surveillance law focus on physical intrusions, which are easier to measure, or should it focus more broadly on the individual being watched and on the power that surveillance affords the state?
Since the majority of SCOTUS decided to ignore Governor Brown and will release ten thousand state prison inmates onto the streets of California, maybe SCOTUS can foot the bill for a parting gift of a cellphone and GPS tracking device for each of the 10,000. You think?
The office of Ronald D. Weiss, Long Island-based lawyer, reporting decline in bankruptcy filings but surge in requests related to foreclosures and modifications (The Law Office of Ronald D. Weiss. P.C.
The Student Scholarship provides an award of $500 for tuition to a North Carolina resident enrolled in a North Carolina Qualified Paralegal Studies Program as defined by the North Carolina State Bar. The application packet ...
Scary thought that you can't kiss kids that need it so, Kids that cling to you are a "dead-ringer" for some kind of required reporting by teachers. If abuse is later found out and the teacher didn't report it, then the teacher's in hot water. Think that's fair to kids and students? I don't.
If anyone doubted that Amazon Web Services is fully aboard the mobile applications bandwagon, check out its new Simple Notification Service for Apple, Google and its own Kindle Fire devices. The company promises that Mobile Push for Amazon Simple Notification Service, or SNS, means devleopers can send notifications to all those platforms using one API.
This is a development that UrbanAirship, a vendor specializing in automating push alerts, will likely be following.
According to Amazon:
“SNS Mobile Push alleviates the need to build and operate one’s own intermediary service, and enables developers to push once, deliver anywhere. This reduces the cost and complexity for developers, as they do not have to integrate and maintain different versions of the same push software for multiple mobile platforms.”
The service is free for up to one million notifications per month and then $0.50 per each additional million messages published. It’s been clear for months that AWS has its eye on mobile development, hiring up a storm for a new Palo Alto, Calif. mobile-focused group, for example. And, seriously why would it not given that more people use smartphones and tablets as their primary devices?
Ken White blogs at Popehat. He's a litigator and criminal defense attorney at Brown White & Newhouse LLP in Los Angeles. His views are his alone, not those of his firm.
All of my coverage of Prenda Law is collected here.
Today the Prenda Law enterprise encountered an extinction-level event. Faced with a federal judge's demand that they explain their litigation conduct, Prenda Law's attorney principals -- and one paralegal -- invoked their right to remain silent under the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution. As a matter of individual prudence, that may have been the right decision. But for the nationwide Prenda Law enterprise, under whatever name or guise or glamour, it spelled doom.
Hail, Hail, The Gang's All Here
The crowd gathered early outside of the courtroom of United States District Judge Otis D. Wright II. As before, the spectators included journalists, former Prenda defendants and their lawyers, law clerks and externs, interested citizens, and Electronic Frontier Foundation activists. The little crowd went awkward-party-foul silent when a team of lawyers and nervous- looking men in suits filed into the courtroom. Some of us glanced at the chart that attorney Morgan Pietz created to see if we could match faces. We soon saw that we could. Bets regarding who would show up in response to Judge Wright's Order to Show Cause were won and lost with some good-natured cursing.
Maneuvering Your Paralegal Career from Start to Finish Legal Talk Network Diaz and Voisin met through The National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA) and there they decided to co-author a book, The Professional Paralegal: A Guide to Finding a...
A Dallas lawyer claims in a lawsuit that her law firm undermined her work opportunities with a policy that barred female and male lawyers from being alone together, at work or outside the workplace. The suit by Kimberly Elkjer ...
Online paralegal schools are the latest scam spamming email boxes. Many of these so-called online paralegal schools are enrolling students to earn a profit. Many students will find out too late that their degrees are not from ...
Tony_Spencer-113x150 Commonwealth's Attorney Anthony G. “Tony” Spencer of Caroline County seems to view “paralegal” to mean “extralegal.” The Virginia State Bar disciplines Spencer this week with a public reprimand ...
Sharing your scoops to your social media accounts is a must to distribute your curated content. Not only will it drive traffic and leads through your content, but it will help show your expertise with your followers.
How to integrate my topics' content to my website?
Integrating your curated content to your website or blog will allow you to increase your website visitors’ engagement, boost SEO and acquire new visitors. By redirecting your social media traffic to your website, Scoop.it will also help you generate more qualified traffic and leads from your curation work.
Distributing your curated content through a newsletter is a great way to nurture and engage your email subscribers will developing your traffic and visibility.
Creating engaging newsletters with your curated content is really easy.