Posted inNewsSXSWTechnology

SXSW: Reaching the Final Frontier: An Exploration of Space Law

A panel of attorneys discussed the ever-evolving galaxy of space law, including disabusing the notion that space law is “unregulated,” during a panel session at South By Southwest.

Franceska Schroeder, a principal in Fish Richardson, provided an overview of the laws governing space and space exploration including the Commercial Space Launch Act, or CSLA; the National and Commercial Space Programs Act, also known as the Land Remote Sensing Policy Act; the Communications Act; and the U.S. Export Control Laws, including International Traffic in Arms Regulations, and Export Administration Regulations.

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Posted inABA TECHSHOWNews

New from the ABA TechShow Start-Up Alley  

On the flight from Austin, I’m already running into techie-peeps all around. LawPay is a major sponsor this year and two out of the ten are on the flight. Happened to look across the shuttle aisle from airport parking lot to catch one of these folks sporting his very cool LawPay vest. And it’s game on. I’m sitting with another vendor to my left and across the aisle a solo who escaped from big law and legal tech wonk, both going to their first American Bar Association TechShow. Oh, how their world is about to change.

Change is the one thing that comes at these events. We’re currently experiencing (or being bombarded with) more options for law practice management, e-discovery, client communication, document management, automation, artificial intelligence, and general legal tech that is morphing these categories in new and different ways, adding not just layers of tech on top of each other, but crossing into the functionality of other systems, in an effort to gain market share. Continue Reading

Posted inCLEMinority AffairsSpecial Event

Early registration for the Texas Minority Attorney Program ends soon

Early registration ends March 22 for the 17th Annual Texas Minority Attorney Program.

TMAP 2019 will be held April 5 at South Texas College of Law Houston, 1303 San Jacinto St. Attendees will earn six hours of CLE credit. Topics include technology trends, business development for solos and small firms, immigration law, family law, and more.

Learn more about the program here and register here.

Posted inEntertainment LawNewsSXSW

SXSW: Uncovering music licensing tips and tricks

Myth No. 1 of music licensing: Just because you are not making money on a project, does not mean you can use music for free.

Austin lawyer Amy E. Mitchell, of Amy E. Mitchell PLLC, and Roanna Gillespie, a music supervisor at WOW Sounds, educated the South By Southwest audience during a panel titled “Music Licensing Tips and Tricks for Film/TV.”

While Mitchell laid out the basic legal framework for music licensing, much of the discussion was a cautionary tale as they debunked several licensing myths and outlined hurdles to using music in TV or film projects.

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Posted inCLEMock TrialNewsTexas Young Lawyers Association

Volunteers needed to judge preliminary rounds of National Trial Competition

The Texas Young Lawyers Association and the American College of Trial Lawyers are seeking volunteers to judge the preliminary rounds of the National Trial Competition.

The top 30 law school teams from across the country will compete in the mock trial competition in San Antonio on March 28 and 29. Judges are needed for the preliminary rounds of the competition at the Bexar County Courthouse, 100 Dolorosa, San Antonio, TX 78205.

The schedule is as follows:

  • Round 1:  8:15 a.m. to noon on March 28
  • Round 2:  1:15 p.m. to 5 p.m. on March 28
  • Round 3:  8:15 a.m. to noon on March 29

All necessary materials will be provided to the volunteer judges. Additionally, each attorney can receive up to 4 hours of CLE self-study credit for participating.

If you are interested in judging, please signup online here or send an email to tylantcjudge@gmail.com.

Posted inNewsSXSWTechnology

SXSW: AI-powered media manipulation and its consequences


Researchers and legal scholars at a SXSW panel warned that machine-learning technologies are exploding the scope of media manipulation, prompting society wide concerns.

Experts on a panel titled “AI-Powered Media Manipulation and its Consequences” highlighted various manipulation techniques powered by artificial intelligence, such as “Deepfake,” a term used for a technique that synthesizes images of humans. The technique can be used to create images of someone doing something they didn’t actually do or to generate photo representations of people who don’t exist. The implication of such manipulation depends on how it is used.

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Posted inNewsSXSWTechnology

SXSW: Chatbots & AI—business, legal, and ethical concerns

What are the general policies businesses should follow when interacting through virtual assistants and chatbots? A recent panel at South by Southwest in Austin discussed best practices, current laws, and upcoming legislation that will affect how companies do business.

“The law is the tortoise and technology is the hare,” said Hannah Taylor, counsel to Frankfurt Kurnit Klein & Selz.

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Posted inNewsSXSWTechnology

SXSW: When the internet turns violent and abusive

Carrie Goldberg, left, and Mona Sedky discuss combatting internet abuses such as sextortion.

A private attorney, a federal prosecutor, and a legal scholar tackled the challenges of combatting invasive online crimes such as sextortion, doxxing, and cyberstalking during a South by Southwest panel titled “When the Internet Turns Violent and Abusive.”

Mona Sedky, a federal prosecutor with the U.S. Department of Justice’s Computer Crime & Intellectual Property Section, explained that online harassment goes much further than name-calling. She tracks and prosecutes criminals who hack into computers looking for photos or compromising information that they can use to threaten, extort, and otherwise terrorize victims, who are often women. The hackers use that information to coerce other images and even pornography from their victims.

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Posted inNewsSXSWTechnology

SXSW: Taming the Orwellian surveillance state

The harvesting of data via artificial intelligence, biometrics technology, and digital data collection is currently outpacing laws regulating its use according to a recent panel at the South by Southwest Conference & Festivals taking place in Austin this week.

Myriad information is created through many means, such as posting to or having profiles on social media platforms, or just by simply using a cellphone. This “digital dandruff” is collected by three main entities: law enforcement, private companies working for law enforcement agencies, and private companies hoping to sell user data, said Barry Friedman, a professor and director of the New York University School of Law Policing Project.

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Posted inLaw Firms and Legal Departments

Scams Continue to Target Texas Attorneys

Update 3/13/19: We received a report of another scam. A Texas attorney received an email inquiry for a new case through the attorney’s firm website. The scammer requested to retain the firm for help in getting repayment for a loan. A copy of the supposed loan agreement was sent to the firm. The address used for the loan borrower is local to the firm’s location. The address the scammer listed as their own is located in Hong Kong. The scammer used the name Mr. Zhang Chang. A similar scam by someone with that name was previously reported by two Ontario law firms.

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