External Event: CALL FOR EXPRESSIONS OF INTEREST & ABSTRACTS – The British Society of Criminology Conference 2015

The session of “State interests in cyber-security: language, policies and action” of the British Society of Criminology Conference 2015 (Plymouth UK, 30 June – 3 July) is calling for expressions of interest and abstracts.
If you would like to participate please contact nicholas.gervassis@plymouth.ac.uk by mid-May. The event’s general website is available here.

The Rational
State interests in cyber-security: language, policies and action (Dr X.P. Voyatzis-Hernandez, Dr Nicholas J. Gervassis)

Following the language being primarily used in governmental calls to intensify cybersecurity measures and to increase the investigative powers of security services within the context of electronic communications and new technologies, it is becoming increasingly unclear whether the cybersecurity interests of state institutions reflect substantially on the citizenry’s concerns, or whether they are becoming instead self-referential and self-protective.

Collectively, these papers aim to map the current interests of public authorities in cybersecurity, as expressed through policy statements and practices. While engaging mainly with the UK setting, the discussion is open to comparative examinations of other state-based cybersecurity perspectives.

We may consider this particular argument in relation to aggressively dismissive reactions of state authorities to the recent wave of revelations about national and international state surveillance operations: the government’s responses are consistently focussed on equating any disclosure, any leak to the public of allegedly unlawful state activities with threats to national security.

The emerging paradigm of state-centred cybersecurity priorities may be framed through the following set of questions:
– Where do institutions draw their strategies and concerns from?
– How do they engage with the bottom-up interests of citizens?
– How much of their relevant strategies/operations/actions engage with the language of citizens’ rights and values?
– How public are the dominant discourses and practices of cyber-security?
– How do citizens engage with these?
Submissions are invited to address such questions, as well as to engage with analysis of institutional languages, actions & operations / the interaction of institutional policies & operations with citizens (public perception; participation; experience from cases etc).

SLS Cyberlaw Section: Call for Papers for 2015 SLS Annual Conference at University of York


This is a call for papers for the Cyberlaw section of the 2015 SLS Annual Conference to be held at the University of York from Tuesday 1st September – Friday 4th September. This year’s theme, ‘Law’s Subjects: Subject to Law’, has been chosen to mark the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta 1215, as well as the 250th anniversary of Entick v Carrington. The Cyberlaw section will meet in the first half of the conference on Tuesday 1st and Wednesday 2nd September. If you are interested in presenting a paper, please submit an abstract by Sunday 31st May. Early submission (by Tuesday 31st March) can be made through the EasyChair conference system which can be accessed using the following link: https://easychair.org/conferences/?conf=sls2015. Please email your abstracts to faye.wang@brunel.ac.uk when EasyChair submission is closed.

I would welcome proposals for papers on any issue in the area of cyberlaw, including those addressing this year’s conference theme. Alternatively, if you would like to propose a topic of current interest for a panel or roundtable discussion, please do get in touch to see if this can be arranged. As the SLS is keen to ensure that as many members with good quality papers as possible are able to present, we discourage speakers from presenting more than one paper at the conference. With this in mind, I would be grateful if you could let me know if you are also responding to calls for papers from other sections.

Please note that whilst you need only send a proposed title and abstract at this stage, speakers are encouraged to submit a full paper via EasyChair before the conference. The SLS offers a Best Paper Prize which can be awarded to academics at any stage of their career. The Prize carries a £250 monetary award and winning papers are published in Legal Studies. To be eligible:

•speakers must be fully paid-up members of the SLS;
•papers must not exceed 11,000 words including footnotes (as counted in Word); and
•papers must not have been published previously or have been accepted or be under consideration for publication.

I have also been asked to remind you that all speakers will need to book and pay to attend the conference. Booking information will be circulated in due course.

With best wishes,
Faye Wang
Convenor, SLS Cyberlaw Section

SLS Cyberlaw Section Program 2014


The SLS Annual Conference Cyberlaw Section will meet at the East Midlands Conference Centre (adjacent to the Orchard Hotel) at the University of Nottingham this year. Here is the SLS Cyberlaw Section 2014 Program (Updated 9 September 2014). For general conference information, please visit http://conference.legalscholars.ac.uk/nottingham/2014-programme.pdf.

SLS Special Journal Edition in IPF 2014


SLS Cyberlaw Section 2013 Special Edition, (March 2014) Journal of Intellectual Property Forum (IPSANZ) Issue 96, p.6-7; and p.18-69.

Faye Fangfei Wang, SLS Cyberlaw Section Editorial (2013): TechLaw Principles and Implementation Editorial Download

Graham Smith, Are TechLaw Principles Ascendency?

Sean Thomas, Sale of Goods and Intellectual Property: Problems with Ownership

Giacomo Pailli, Can Europe Learn from US E-discovery?

Andreas Rühmkorf, Ratemylegalrisk.com – The Legality of Online Rating Sites Relating to Individuals in Data Protection Law

Call for Papers 2014



SLS Cyberlaw Section Call for Papers 2014
Thursday, 11 September – Friday, 12 September 2014
University of Nottingham, UK

This is a call for papers for the Cyberlaw section of the 2014 Society of Legal Scholars (SLS) Annual Conference to be held at the University of Nottingham. The SLS conference runs from 9th – 12th September 2014. The Cyberlaw Section is in Group B, being held on 11th and 12th September.

Papers in every discipline of law are welcome, including those reflecting the main conference theme ‘Judging in the 21st Century’. Topics include but not limited to: Electronic Contracts, Data Privacy Protection, New Tech Regulations, Online Dispute Resolution, Internet Jurisdiction and Applicable Law and Digital Intellectual Property Rights.

If you are interested in presenting a paper, please e-mail a proposed title and short abstract (Max 500 words) to me (faye.wang@brunel.ac.uk) by 31st March 2014 (please note that speakers have to register and pay the appropriate fees for the conference).

At last I am pleased to let you know that the third special journal edition of the SLS Cyberlaw Section will be published by the Journal of Intellectual Property Forum (IPSANZ) on 1st March 2014.

Official Source: http://sections.legalscholars.ac.uk/call-for-papers/call.cfm?id=30.

SLS Cyberlaw Section Abstracts and Papers 2013



Abstracts and draft papers for the SLS Cyberlaw Section 2013 are now available at http://sections.legalscholars.ac.uk/section_homepage.cfm?id=30 until January 2014 when information is archived.

The general SLS conference program can be found at http://conference.legalscholars.ac.uk/edinburgh/programme.cfm.

The SLS Cyberlaw Section meets at St Trinneans in the St Leonard’s Hall St Leonard's Hall which is associated with the University of Edinburgh Pollock Halls of Residence. St Leonard’s Hall was designed in 1870 by architect John Lessels for the publisher Thomas Nelson. It is a rich example of the Scottish Baronial style.

SLS Cyberlaw Section Annual Conference Program 2013


The Society of Legal Scholars (SLS) Cyberlaw Section Annual Conference Program 2013 is now available at
SLS Cyberlaw Section Schedule 2013 (Final Version)

The SLS conference registration is now open at http://conference.legalscholars.ac.uk/edinburgh/index.cfm via ‘Book Online’.

The conference rate can be found at http://conference.legalscholars.ac.uk/edinburgh/conference-packages.cfm.

Pre-conference Online Discussion 2013 (SLS Cyberlaw Section)

The SLS Cyberlaw Section Pre-conference Online Forum is open on the 15th March 2013. This forum is for scholars, practitioners and general public to share current development, new ideas and cutting-edge advances in the field of cyberlaw in preparation of the SLS Annual Conference Cyberlaw Section to be held at the University of Edinburgh on the 5th and 6th September 2013.

Graham Smith (Partner, Bird & Bird), one of the pioneer IT law practitioners will deliver a keynote on Are tech law principles in the ascendancy?.

‘Tech lawyers, from the earliest days of legislating for electronic transactions, have been advocates of technological neutrality and functional equivalence between online and offline. Are these principles now gaining wider acceptance? Graham Smith will discuss, with particular reference to recent decisions such as the Canadian Supreme Court Copyright Pentalogy, UsedSoft v Oracle in the CJEU and the UK Supreme Court in Meltwater.’

– Graham Smith, Bird & Bird, UK

Comments from any angle and discipline will be welcome. Please enter your views by ‘leaving a comment’.

Category 1: Digital IP Rights and Sale of Goods

‘In the current digital era, questions concerning the interrelationship of sale of goods law and intellectual property law have become particularly problematic. The English law of sale is still stuck in the age of the horse, and not the age of Amazon. The effect of potential growth in embedded and nano-technologies, as well as the impact of IPR pirates, trolls, and tyrants should therefore be analysed.’

– Sean Thomas, University of Leicester, UK

Category 2: Data Privacy Protection, Internet Regulation and ISP Liability

‘Big data (XL) is not just another incremental technological development. It is not just more of the same, but a new informational paradigm. Such new technological paradigm requires more than technical adjustments as the fuzziness of privacy theory renders this task a challenging one.’ Paper Download

– Michael Birnhack, Tel-Aviv University, Israel

Category 3: Online Dispute Resolution and Internet-related Disputes

‘The Irish Mediation Bill 2012 does not exclude the possibility of court referred or court ordered online mediation. This will require those who engage in online mediation to assess the mechanisms used as part of the process.’

– Lorraine Lally, The Bar Council of Ireland, Ireland

A full program will be available in due course.

News Update (March 2013)


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1.Court of Appeal decision on Tamiz v Google defamation case on 14 February 2013

‘The allegedly defamatory comments were posted between 28 and 30 April, soon after the initial blog of 27 April. By the very nature of a blog, they will have been followed by numerous other comments in the chain and, whilst still accessible, will have receded into history. As I have indicated, the earliest point at which Google Inc could have become liable in respect of the comments would be some time after notification of the complaint in respect of them. But it is highly improbable that any significant number of readers will have accessed the comments after that time and prior to removal of the entire blog. It follows, as the judge clearly had in mind, that any damage to the appellant’s reputation arising out of continued publication of the comments during that period will have been trivial; and in those circumstances the judge was right to consider that “the game would not be worth the candle”. I do not accept Mr Busuttil’s submission that various other features of the claim, including the fact that the appellant’s name is relatively uncommon and distinctive in this jurisdiction, undermined the judge’s conclusion.’

More information is available at http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWCA/Civ/2013/68.html.

2. Cracking the Electronic Communications Code (UK)

‘On 28 February 2013 the Law Commission is recommending reforms that will bring the Electronic Communications Code (1984) up to date with modern technology while continuing to balance the rights of landowners and the public demand for modern communications services. The Code governs the legal relationship between network providers and landowners.’

The Commission’s report is available on http://www.lawcom.gov.uk.

More information is available at http://lawcommission.justice.gov.uk/.

3. Commission fines Microsoft for non-compliance with browser choice commitments

‘In March 2013 the European Commission has imposed a €561 million fine on Microsoft for failing to comply with its commitments to offer users a browser choice screen enabling them to easily choose their preferred web browser. In 2009, the Commission had made these commitments legally binding on Microsoft until 2014 (see IP/09/1941). In today’s decision, the Commission finds that Microsoft failed to roll out the browser choice screen with its Windows 7 Service Pack 1 from May 2011 until July 2012. 15 million Windows users in the EU therefore did not see the choice screen during this period. Microsoft has acknowledged that the choice screen was not displayed during that time.’

More information is available at http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_IP-13-196_en.htm.

4. The New Legislation on Alternative Dispute Resolution and Online Dispute Resolution in the EU

‘On 12 March 2013, the European Parliament voted to support the new legislation on Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) and Online Dispute Resolution (ODR).’

More information is available at http://ec.europa.eu/consumers/redress_cons/adr_policy_work_en.htm.

5. The Submission for the Amendment to the Crime and Courts Bill in the UK

More information is available at http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/bills/lbill/2012-2013/0090/2013090.8-14.html.

Current Update – Response to the EC Public Consultation on Notice & Takedown Procedure 2012



Response to Public Consultation on EU Notice & Takedown Procedure 2012 by Faye Fangfei Wang

Wang, F. (2012), Response to Public Consultation on Procedures for Notifying and Acting on Illegal Content hosted by Online Intermediaries (December 2012), Intellectual Property Forum, Issue 91, p.93-98. Paper Download

Abstract: The “notice and takedown” (NTD) system has been considered as indispensable measures to protect users’ rights against illegal content on online platforms. Such procedure places a considerable level of responsibilities on online intermediaries. This paper responses to the European Commission consultation in 2012 and discusses possible solutions to the challenges of the NTD procedures in the EU with some reference to the current practice in the US.

You are welcome to share your experience and insights with us by leaving a comment.


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