Archive for the ‘contracts’ category

Online vendors owe purchasers a duty of care says an Ontario court: Hazjizadeh v Canada

August 25th, 2014

Online vendors will be interested in a recent decision of an Ontario court in Hazjizadeh v Canada (Attorney General), 2014 CanLII 48552 (ON SCSM). In the ruling the court held that online advertisers owe a duty of care to prospective purchasers to ensure that their representations are true and not misleading. If they breach this duty, they may be held liable in negligence for online statements which induce purchasers to engage in transactions.

Excluding damages for wrongful contract terminations: AB v CD

January 8th, 2014

A recent UK case addressed an important contract issue for IT lawyers. Will a limit of liability clause that prevents recovery of damages for a wrongful termination of an agreement be a ground for granting an injunction to prevent the irreparable harm associated with the breach for which full damages cannot be recovered? Alternatively, will the liability exclusion be accepted as the bargain reached by the parties for such breaches and not be a basis for a finding of irreparable harm? The court in AB v CD [2014] EWHC 1 (QB) (03 January 2014) considered that the latter position was the law, but expressed doubts as to its correctness.

Developments in Computer, Internet and E-Commerce Law (2012-2013)

June 27th, 2013

Earlier today, I gave my annual presentation to the Toronto Computer Lawyers’ Group on developments in Computer, Internet, and e-commerce Law. The slides cover the period from my last presentation in June 2012, Developments in Computer, Internet and E-Commerce Law (2011-2012).

The cases summarized in the slides below canvass developments in a number of countries and include cases from Canada, United States, UK, Ireland, Australia, and Israel.

CANADA

1004964 Ontario Inc. v. Aviya Technologies Inc., 2013 ONSC 51

A.B. v. Bragg Communications Inc., 2012 SCC 46

Acanac Inc. v. M.N.R., 2013 TCC 163

Blizzard v. Simpson, 2012 ONSC 4312

Problems with copyright assignments: Righthaven, Tremblay and POPS

May 10th, 2013

Copyright assignments. There are a myriad of ways for them to be challenged or be ineffective. Three recent cases illustrate their potential frailties; one from the US and two from Canada.

Yesterday’s decision of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in Righthaven LLC v Hoehn 2013 WL 1908876 (9th.Cir.May 9, 2013) spells the end of the copyright troll Righthaven. It gained substantial notoriety by commencing lawsuits alleging copyright infringement in articles published in the Las Vegas Review-Journal reproduced online by websites without permission.

Strangest copyright cases of 2012

December 28th, 2012

If you’re on holidays and looking for some copyright law hilarity, take 15 minutes to read Meads v. Meads, 2012 ABQB 571. This case from Alberta examines the practice of Organized Commercial  Pseudolegal Commercial Argument litigants (“OCPA” litigants). These persons employ a collection of techniques and arguments promoted and sold by ‘gurus’ to disrupt court operations and to attempt to frustrate the legal rights of governments, corporations, and individuals.

CRTC Issues CASL (Canada’s Anti-Spam Law) Guidelines, background and commentary

October 16th, 2012

Last week the CRTC released its first two “information bulletins” intended to help businesses in interpreting CASL and the CRTC’s regulations under CASL. While certain of the Commission’s interpretations are helpful, some are troublesome as they would impose new requirements not contemplated either by the statute or the CRTC’s own regulations. They would necessitate costly compliance, which would particularly affect small and medium-sized businesses and mobile digital commerce.

Under the Commission’s interpretation of its regulations and the related provisions of CASL, among other things:

  • Users should be given the opportunity to unsubscribe from all messages from the sender, not merely CEMs.

Are “browse wrap” agreements enforceable after the Century 21 v Rogers Communications case?

September 20th, 2012

Last fall, the BC Supreme Court canvassed in great detail whether “web wrap” also known as “browse wrap” agreements are potentially enforceable. Earlier today, I gave a talk at the Law Society of Upper Canada that summarized the conclusions and reasoning of the court in the Century 21 Canada Limited Partnership v. Rogers Communications Inc., 2011 BCSC 1196 case. My slides from the talk are shown below.  They also summarize numerous other cases that examine the enforceability of click wrap and web wrap agreements.

Developments in Computer, Internet and E-Commerce Law (2011-2012)

June 21st, 2012

Here are the slides used in my presentation to the Toronto Computer Lawyers Group earlier today, The Year in Review: Developments in Computer, Internet and E-Commerce Law (2011-2012). It covers significant developements since my talk last spring, Developments in Computer, Internet and E-Commerce Law (2010-2011).

The slides include a summary of the following cases:

Kraft Real Estate Investments, LLC v Homeway.com, Inc. 2012 WL 220271 (D.S.Car. Jan 24, 2012)

Swift v. Zynga Game Network, Inc., 805 F.Supp.2d 904, (N.D.Cal., 2011)

Fteja v. Facebook, Inc., 2012 WL 183896 (S.D.N.Y. 2012)

Grosvenor v. Qwest Corp., 2012 WL 602655 (D.Colo., 2012) 

Website terms, copyright used to shut down real estate data scraping in Century 21 v Rogers

September 8th, 2011

You can always tell when you are about to read a good case by its opening paragraph. The decision of the BC Supreme Court in Century 21 Canada Limited Partnership v. Rogers Communications Inc., 2011 BCSC 1196  doesn’t disappoint. It begins as follows:

The ability of the law to adapt is part of its strength. Technological innovation tests that resilience. This case considers that ability as claims for breach of contract, trespass to chattels and copyright infringement meet the Internet.  At the root of this lawsuit is the legitimacy of indexing publically accessible websites.