Electronic terms of service govern billions of relationships worldwide, whether a user is joining a social media service, shopping online or accessing a blog. In each case, a binding contract is formed, the terms of which are usually set out in the website’s “terms of service” . But when a contract is made over the internet and there is later a dispute, whose law governs? What is the “forum” for the resolution of the dispute? What if the contract expressly designates a specific jurisdiction as the appropriate “forum”? In Douez v Facebook, Inc. (“Douez”), the Supreme Court of … Continue Reading
Photographer Edmond Chung’s fashion photos of Brandy Melville Canada Ltd. (“Brandy Melville”) employee Catherine Moisan were destined to be viewed on Instagram and Facebook. However, Brandy Melville’s unauthorized use of one of his photographs led Edmond Chung on a years-long effort to seek redress from the retailer for breach of his copyright. Edmond Chung finally succeeded in his efforts this April 2016 when the Court of Quebec’s Small Claims Division condemned Brandy Melville to pay Edmond Chung $5,000.00 for copyright infringement.  This decision is good news for creators seeking to share their work with a larger audience as it … Continue Reading
Unknowingly, many Quebec lawyers may be in breach of ethical obligations regarding Social Media use.
Quebec’s new Code of Professional Conduct of Lawyers (the “Code”) came into force on March 26, 2015 and replaced a previous iteration of the law. Parts of the Code were adapted to the needs of society in an increasingly technological age; however, Article 145, concerning lawyers’ advertising, remained untouched. Article 145 states that: “In his advertising, a lawyer may not use or allow to be used an endorsement or statement of gratitude concerning him.” Its strict application implies that any endorsement, including any posted online, … Continue Reading
Information disseminated through social media platforms such as Facebook and LinkedIn is of growing utility in litigation matters. Evidence obtained from social media accounts by way of discovery preservation and production orders has significantly strengthened the positions of litigating parties. This should come as no surprise as individuals routinely “post” messages, thoughts, pictures and experiences on these platforms, leaving a wake of evidence in the process.
There has been marked development in this area of law in Canadian jurisprudence. To date, Courts and Tribunals have, among other things, ordered the preservation and production of entire social media accounts, dismissed wrongful … Continue Reading
A company’s brand is a key asset and needs protection both offline and online – so if you haven’t yet embarked on an online brand protection strategy, where do you start?
Your trade-mark, or brand name, is what distinguishes you from your competitors. In effect, trade-marks provide a shortcut to get consumers to where they want to go (as described by Mr Justice Binnie in the Mattel, Inc. v. 3894207 Canada Inc.) And, hopefully that is leading consumers to you, and not to a cybersquatter, pay-per-click site, or to a site that is trying to defraud your customers.
A recent survey on information retention and e-discovery practices, undertaken by a large IT service provider, yielded some surprising results.
The purpose of the survey was to better understand how companies are responding to litigation and regulatory requests for information despite an increasing amount of data from a growing number of sources. The survey also asked whether companies had implemented formal information retention and e-discovery practices, and the impact of doing so.
The survey uncovered the following facts:
- E-mail is no longer the most commonly requested category of record
- Instead, both loose files and information from databases outrank e-mail in