Revision Legal’s attorneys are experts in trademark registration, trademark protection, and trademark infringement litigation. Our expert trademark lawyers have represented clients in trademark infringement disputes in federal courts around the country and have represented Lansing businesses and individuals just like you on numerous occasions. If you seek trademark registration or trademark protection in Lansing, contact one of Revision Legal’s trademark attorneys today at 855-473-8474.
Revision Legal’s attorneys are experts in intellectual property law, including trademark law, copyright law, trade secret law, and non-compete agreements. Our intellectual property attorneys have represented clients in both state and federal courts across the country and have filed for trademark registration and copyright registration with the United States Patent and Trademark Office and the US Copyright Office on behalf of Traverse City individuals and businesses on numerous occasions. If you seek intellectual property protection in Traverse City, contact Traverse City’s premiere intellectual property lawyers at (231) 714.0100.
Revision Legal’s attorneys are experts in copyright registration and copyright protection. Our Traverse City copyright lawyers have represented artists, musicians, businesses, and authors, including in copyright licensing deals, copyright registration, and copyright infringement lawsuits in federal court. If you are an individual or business located in Traverse City that seeks a copyright attorney, contact Revision Legal today at (231) 714.0100 for a free consultation.
Revision Legal’s attorneys are experts in trademark registration, trademark protection, and trademark litigation. Our Traverse City trademark lawyers have represented some of the most recognizable brands in Traverse City and have filed trademark registrations for Traverse City businesses on numerous occasions. If you are an individual or business looking for trademark registration or trademark protection in Traverse City, contact one of our expert trademark attorneys today for a free consultation at (231) 714.0100.
Though not strictly a claim for defamation, the publication of embarrassing or private photographs may constitute an independent tort. Provided the plaintiff created the photo, owns rights to the photo, or may obtain an assignment of the photo, the publication of a private photograph may constitute copyright infringement. Where such a copyright infringement has occurred, an individual may have several legal remedies available.
Privacy and intellectual property lawyers have seen a marked increase in the publication of embarrassing or private photographs, including nude/naked photos, sex tapes, or stolen or hacked photographs. Various websites now entice users to submit ex-girlfriend photographs, naked photographs, or provocative photographs and have made lucrative business models out of this practice, including amateur pornography websites, “doxed” sites, and ex-girlfriend websites. Though there has been an increase in this practice, lawyers have several methods by which an individual can protect and assert their rights.
Public disclosure of private facts is a tort that falls under the general category of invasion of privacy. To establish a claim for public disclosure of private facts, a plaintiff must establish that the defendant has publicly disclosed private facts that are of no concern to the public and that, as disclosed, are offensive to a reasonable person.
This cause of action typically applies where a defendant has published private information concerning an individual that, though true, is of no concern to the public and is not newsworthy. A private fact is typically defined by state law as a detail about one’s private life that is not generally known by others, including facts about an individual’s sex life, sexual orientation, or finances.
Like defamation and false light invasion of privacy, intrusion upon seclusion is one of several state law privacy torts that may be available to a plaintiff. Intrusion upon seclusion or solitude occurs where a defendant intrudes upon the privacy or seclusion of the plaintiff.
Such an intrusion may occur by physical or electronic means, and some states require that, in order for such a claim to be viable, the intrusion occur in a manner in which, if it was performed by an individual and not a device, would have required physical presence. For example, if the intrusion occurred via a video camera in a bedroom, such a claim, in some states, would constitute a viable intrusion upon seclusion claim because, in the absence of a camera, such an intrusion would have required physical presence. Other states recognize that intrusion upon seclusion is a an information gathering tort and that an intrusion upon seclusion claim may be satisfied by computer hacking or information theft.
False light invasion of privacy, like defamation, is a tort intended to protect an individual against statements that place that individual in a false light. At common law, a plaintiff must prove the following to establish a claim for false light invasion of privacy:
- That the defendant published a statement to third parties;
- That the published statement specifically identifies the plaintiff;
- That the statement places the plaintiff in a false light that is highly offensive to a reasonable person; and
- That the defendant knew that the statement was false or acted with reckless disregard with respect to the falsity of the statement
Since false light invasion of privacy is a state law tort, these elements may change depending on the applicable state law. Additionally, due to its closeness to a defamation cause of action, some states do not recognize false light invasion of privacy as a viable cause of action. Where states do recognize a cause of action for false light invasion of privacy, many states recognize that the cause of action for false light invasion provides a remedy for the emotional distress suffered by a plaintiff unlike defamation, which provides a remedy for damage to the plaintiff’s reputation.
Online defamation victims are often frustrated to find that a website on which defamatory posts appear will not remove the defamation. Many clients have contacted our firm because a third party has posted false or defamatory reviews or statements to one of the large consumer-oriented websites, such as RipOffReport, Complaints Board, or Pissed Consumer. These sites, along with others, are notorious for declining to remove posts even where the victim has provided substantial evidence showing that they have been defamed. These sites are shielded by Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which provides interactive computer services with immunity from liability for the republication of defamatory or invasive statements.
Section 230 states that a provider of an interactive computer service will not be treated as a speaker or publisher of any information provided by an information content provider. This means that, as long as a website does not create the content itself, it cannot be held liable for the republication of defamatory or invasive statements. At common law, a newspaper could be held equally as liable for its publishing of the defamatory statements of its reporters as the reporters themselves because a newspaper was presumed to have control over the content published in its newspaper. At the start of the Internet age, courts continued this doctrine, which made online services, such as Prodigy, liable if they exercised editorial control over the content published through their services. In Congress’ mind, this created a disincentive–if Prodigy removed or edited defamatory content, it could be held liable as a publisher.
Consequently, Congress enacted Section 230, which was intended to provide service providers with an incentive to self-police the content of their websites. Unfortunately, many websites soon began to take advantage of the blanket immunity granted by the Act and created business models that take a notorious hands-off approach to the republication of false and defamatory content. Subsequently cases have consistently upheld that immunity, and numerous cases have been dismissed on Section 230 grounds.
Not all claims, however, are barred by Section 230. Though Section 230 provides blanket immunity for tort claims against interactive computer services, it does not provide immunity from prosecution for intellectual property infringement. Thus, it is important to contact an Internet defamation attorney to ensure that you understand all of your rights under the law.
Our expert Lansing trademark lawyers are here to serve all of your trademark needs. Whether you are faced with a trademark infringement lawsuit or seek trademark registration, our Lansing trademark attorneys can handle your matter at reasonable rates. Our trademark lawyers have handled numerous trademarks for businesses in Lansing and across the state and have handled trademark infringement litigation in both the Eastern District of Michigan and Western District of Michigan. Contact us today for a free quote at (517) 505.2323,
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