Copyright risks associated with photos, getting social with the FTC, and more in this issue of Advertising Law News & Analysis

2 min


[Don't] Take a Picture, It'll Last Longer

The Internet is chock-full of great and seemingly free photos. However, writes Venable partner A.J. Zottola in a recent client alert, businesses that fail to consider copyright interests associated with photos do so at great risk. The U.S. Copyright Office recently updated the copyright application process for photographs. The final rule, which took effect February 20, will make it easier for photographers to enhance their rights in their photos, increasing the risk for third-party users that make use of such photos without permission. It may also open the door for copyright trolls to assert rights to photographs aggressively.

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TCPA Plaintiffs Standing Tall

Some courts have limited serial litigants' standing under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), based on them not falling within the statute's "zone of interest" and, thus, not having standing under Article III of the U.S. Constitution. However, the Ninth Circuit, in Romero v. Department Stores National Bank, recently provided support with respect to standing for TCPA plaintiffs, albeit in a different context, write Venable attorneys Dan Blynn and Renato Perez in a recent blog post. In Romero, the court found that TCPA violation is a de facto injury sufficient for standing in federal court under Article III. The Romero decision could prove to be a significant boon to private litigants and a nuisance to industry.

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Getting Social with the FTC

In a recent post on the Electronic Retailing Association's (ERA) blog, Bill McClellan, the association's vice president of government affairs, recaps a webinar hosted by Venable partner Amy Mudge and featuring the Federal Trade Commission's (FTC) Mary Engle. Mudge and Engle discussed the history of the FTC's enforcement efforts to date, as well as how the Commission has gradually shifted its enforcement and education efforts from brands and agencies to focus directly on social media influencers.

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From the Tool Kit:

Businesses often hire agencies to assist in marketing and promotion efforts. However, the agreements governing those relationships must contain key provisions that mitigate legal risk. In the latest edition of the firm's Advertising Law Tool Kit, Venable partners Josh Kaufman and A.J. Zottola discuss best practices that help protect a company's interests when it enters into advertising and agency agreements.

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