Technologist - The FindLaw Legal Technology Blog

Eric Sinrod

Eric Sinrod is a partner in the San Francisco office of Duane Morris LLP (http://www.duanemorris.com) where he focuses on litigation matters of various types, including information technology and intellectual property disputes. His Web site is http://www.sinrodlaw.com and he can be reached at ejsinrod@duanemorris.com. To receive a weekly email link to Mr. Sinrod's columns, please send an email to him with Subscribe in the Subject line.

These columns are prepared and published for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The views expressed in these columns are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the author's law firm or its individual partners.



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FindLaw columnist Eric Sinrod writes regularly in this section on legal developments surrounding technology and the internet.

Since the internet expanded beyond the narrow confines of the military and a few educational institutions and became a more general phenomenon, there has been concern about the internet haves and have nots. There has been talk about the digital divide -- meaning those who already have greater resources will get further ahead by virtue of internet access, leaving those without resources and access even more behind and in the dust. Well, is that about to change?

In a recent Senate committee hearing, SpaceX explained plans for building a global internet network. The foundation of the plan is the deployment of in excess of 4,000 satellites into orbit. And this is not just idle talk by SpaceX. Indeed, the company completed an application to the FCC in November and reportedly is motivated to proceed with its plan, according to an article by Futurism.com.

Busted by a 'Textalyzer'?

FindLaw columnist Eric Sinrod writes regularly in this section on legal developments surrounding technology and the internet.

Let's face it -- many of us are addicted to our tech gadgets. We constantly have to check our smart phones for all sorts of communications and updates. Of course, this can be problematical, especially when we might want to reach for our handheld devices while driving our cars. Indeed, texting while driving can be rather dangerous; it is difficult to focus on your driving while looking down into your phone to text.

But if you manage to text while driving without causing an accident, are you out of the woods? Not necessarily. And what if you are involved in an accident? Well, you may be busted by a "textalyzer."

What You Might Not Know About Amazon

FindLaw columnist Eric Sinrod writes regularly in this section on legal developments surrounding technology and the internet.

Sure, sure, like most of us, you use Amazon often to buy things online and have them delivered to your home without the hassle of actually having to go out to the store. So, given your buying familiarity with Amazon, you might think you know quite a bit about the company. But perhaps there is much more to know.

Indeed, in a recent book by Brad Stone, titled "The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon," profiled by Business Insider, much is revealed that you might not know. (And yes, big surprise, you can purchase the book on Amazon).

FindLaw columnist Eric Sinrod writes regularly in this section on legal developments surrounding technology and the internet.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) sounds exciting in terms of what AI can do for humans; however, a more fully automated world comes with a price -- many jobs lost that were previously performed by humans. This is especially true in specific employment sectors: sales, customer service, transportation, shipping/logistics and healthcare/legal paraprofessionals.

A recent article posted on Futurism.com walks through each of these sectors and how they will be impacted by AI.

Human Rights in the Digital Age

FindLaw columnist Eric Sinrod writes regularly in this section on legal developments surrounding technology and the internet.

Should you have human rights specific to the new digital age? The answer is a clear YES, according to Gerd Leonhard, the author of the new book titled "Technology vs. Humanity." Indeed, Leonhard sets out five potential human rights in what he calls a Digital Ethics Manifesto. So, what are these proposed rights?

FindLaw columnist Eric Sinrod writes regularly in this section on legal developments surrounding technology and the internet.

All countries are not the same when it comes to online freedom and security issues. This is borne out by recent statistics published by Richard Patterson of Comparitech.

When it comes to the amount of freedom offered by countries on the internet, a scale of 1 to 100 is implemented, with 1 being the absolute best possible, and with 100 being the worst. While the United States comes in with a relatively low score of 18, the US is not ranked the most free. Indeed, both Iceland and Estonia have a very low score of 6, with Canada next at 16, then the US at 18. Other relatively free counties include Germany at 19, Australia at 21, Japan at 22, the UK at 23, and South Africa and Italy both at 25.

FindLaw columnist Eric Sinrod writes regularly in this section on legal developments surrounding technology and the internet.

The internet is a relatively new phenomenon. But the following fascinating facts, provided by Inc.com, demonstrate that the internet has gained rapid and ubiquitous traction.

For example, while it took 75 years until telephones were used by 50 million users, Pokemon Go was adopted by 50 million users in only 19 days!

FindLaw columnist Eric Sinrod writes regularly in this section on legal developments surrounding technology and the internet.

Getting to and from work can be a time-consuming, irritating and productivity-sucking endeavor. Indeed, time wasted in the car certainly could be used for more enjoyable and productive activities than countless annual hours behind the wheel. Where rush hour traffic consistently is bad, telecommuting should be actively explored for appropriate employees.

TomTom has collected data in an effort to measure the worst rush hour traffic in 48 countries, and specifically within 390 cities in those countries. So what are the most recently measured worst cities for rush hour traffic?

FindLaw columnist Eric Sinrod writes regularly in this section on legal developments surrounding technology and the internet.

Once upon a time, we received news in traditional formats from finite media sources by way of newspapers, television, and radio. And the news we received from those sources did not vary tremendously one from another. The news just seemed to be the news. As Walter Cronkite closed on his CBS nightly newscast, "And that's the way it is" -- in essence meaning, "Those are the facts."

Times plainly have changed. There are many sources of news. People can choose a news outlet that suits their own political preferences. For example, for someone of a conservative, Republican persuasion, Fox News might be the news outlet of choice. Fox tends to present the news more in line with that end of the political spectrum. And, of course, there are other news outlets that favor the liberal, Democrat end of the political spectrum. So what are the "facts" when the reporting of the same events can be interpreted very differently?

FindLaw columnist Eric Sinrod writes regularly in this section on legal developments surrounding technology and the internet.

Changes keep coming fast, and now nine companies that recently have been part of a program intended to offer subsidized internet access to low-income users have been informed by the Federal Communications Commission that they must not offer this service, according to a recent article by the International Business Times. This position by the new leadership of the FCC represents a complete pivot from a ruling only weeks before by prior FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler.