Round Up – Things You May Have Missed (including some good summer cocktail banter material)

June 14, 2013 | No Comments
Posted by Kurt E. Anderson

Cyber Security Report – Earlier this year, Verizon released viagra femme france montreal its 2013 Data Breach Investigations Report.  The report analyzes and presents data regarding the current state of various data breaches and network attacks.  Some of the results are surprising.

  •             92% of breaches are perpetrated by outsiders
  •             19% of breaches are attributed to state-affiliated actors
  •             76% of network intrusions exploit weak or stolen credentials
  •             66% took months or more to discover


Do Trademark Lawyers Matter?
– An empirical study, published in the Stanford Technology Law Review, provided the results of a grueling analysis of 25 years worth of data from the United States Patent and Trademark Office records on whether being represented by a trademark attorney makes a difference in the likelihood of success in getting your mark registered.  The results?  YES!  It turns out that, overall, trademark applicants who are represented by an attorney are 50% more likely to have their marks registered.  The results are even more dramatic when an application faces an obstacle (e.g., an office action).  In those instances, applicants were found to be 68% more likely to proceed to publication when represented by counsel.  Perhaps its time for a national trademark lawyer appreciation day! (I’m not holding my breath).

Does Keyword Advertising Really Work?  eBay recently released a study, entitled “Consumer Heterogeneity and Paid Search Effectiveness: A Large Scale Field Experiment” which analyzed the effectiveness of eBay’s keyword advertising efforts.  So does keyword advertising really work?  Not so much.  According to the study, for well known brands (like eBay), new and infrequent users may be more influenced by keyword triggered advertisements.  But more experienced searchers and otherwise loyal brand users are not influenced by the ads.  When eBay stopped its keyword advertising, almost all of the traffic lost from the absence of the ad was picked up in the native search results.  It’s important to note, however, that this study was focused on a single well known brand.  The results may be quite different for other brands or for less well known brands.  Moreover, the study says nothing about the use of a trademark by a competitor as a keyword to drive traffic to the competitor’s website.

Marketing Your Mobile App – The FTC has released guidelines for mobile app developers when advertising their software.  The plain language guide is very high level, but does include some helpful tid bits to remember.  Highlights include:

  • Advertising is everything a company tells a prospective buyer about its app (whether its in the formal ad campaign or in other communications).
  • Don’t bury key disclosures in “dense blocks of legal mumbo jumbo” or behind hyperlinks.
  • Build in privacy by design, including principles used in selecting default settings.
  • If you change your privacy policy, you need to get user’s consent.  Merely editing the language of the policy isn’t enough.


Effective Disclosures in Digital Advertising
– The FTC also released guidelines for online advertising.  This new guidance focuses on the peculiarities and challenges associated with online advertising.  Where this adds new value is in its analysis and detail (with examples!) of the following areas:

  • Proximity and Placement – where disclosures have to be placed to be effective
  • Hyperlinks – including proper labeling and placement
  • Prominence – including use of size, color and graphics
  • Distractions – risks from graphics, sounds and links that may distract from disclosures
  • Multimedia – use of audio and video


Attack on “Happy Birthday” Copyright
.  Salon.com reported yesterday that a class action suit has been filed to attack the copyright in the popular birthday celebration tune.  According to the report, the lawsuit was prompted by a documentary uncovering evidence that the song was originally published as early as 1893 and that the current copyright is based on a 1924 publication date which grants the work 95 years of copyright protection.  Based on my count, there’s only about 6 years left in the alleged copyright to begin with.  Hopefully the lawsuit gets resolved before then. 🙂

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