Google probably hoped it was putting a controversy about drug ads to rest last week, when it said it had agreed to pay $500 million to settle a Justice Department investigation. The settlement resolved claims that Google allowed Canadian drugstores to advertise to U.S. consumers on AdWords between 2003 and 2009.
Late last year, the National Labor Relations Board sided with an emergency medical technician, Dawnmarie Souza, who was fired after complaining about her boss on Facebook. The NLRB argued that Souza's dismissal by the ambulance company, American Medical Response of Connecticut, violated a federal labor law protecting employees' rights to unionize. That law allows employees to discuss salaries, working conditions and other issues that could be covered by union negotiations. Now the NLRB has issued a 24-page report examining employers' social media policies.
A state judge in Missouri has struck down a new law in that state that would have restricted teachers' ability to use social networking sites.
Doctors like to accuse lawyers of being quick on the trigger with malpractice lawsuits, but some medical professionals are demonstrating a surprisingly litigious response to online criticism.
This April, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that AT&T was entitled to uphold a clause in its terms of service requiring consumers to resolve disputes in arbitration. At the time, observers predicted that the ruling could have a far-reaching impact on class-action lawsuits on behalf of consumers.
Google has agreed to hand over a whopping $500 million to settle Department of Justice charges for allowing pharmacies based in Canada to advertise prescription drugs to U.S. Web users.
Faced with bad press, not to mention a host of lawsuits, Apple is taking steps to limit outside developers' ability to access the iPhones' and iPads' unique device identifiers.
A federal judge issued a mixed ruling in a copyright infringement case brought by the record label EMI against MP3tunes about its digital locker service and search engine, Sideload.com, which allows users to find free tracks.
The same Republican lawmaker who is leading the fight against net neutrality regulations is also taking on the Federal Trade Commission's stance on online privacy. Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) argues in a column that FTC "activists" are backing regulations that "would threaten the lifeblood of the Internet: data." She goes on to say that the FTC's proposal, which she calls a "government firewall," would "effectively require an 'opt-in' approach before users could gain access to the digital economy."
Several weeks ago, UC Berkeley researchers caused a stir with a new report stating that analytics company KISSmetrics was using ETag technology that can track people even when they delete their cookies.