Tanner Andrews’s Techdirt Profile


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  • May 24th, 2015 @ 12:39am

    Definition of Obscenity

    What is the legal definition of obscenity in the US?

    The standard definition is given by Justice Stewart in his concurring opinion in Jacobellis v. Ohio, 378 US 184,197 (US 1964): ``I know it when I see it''. Thus the job of any seller or distributor is to revive the long-deceased in order to show the material to him and see if he deems it unclean.

  • May 9th, 2015 @ 2:22pm

    Re: NFL Banks Use of Periscope Streaming

    Not sure this is a real problem. Last I heard, live hockey games lost in the ratings to reruns of poker tournaments.

    At some point the NHL may want to investigate making itself relevant. But why bother. Surely they can cadge a half-dollar from someone for the right to periscope stream a zamboni scraping the ice during the intermission.

  • May 5th, 2015 @ 4:49am

    Re: Re: [taxpayers get to pay]

    Depends on how she brings it. She can surely have an action for uncompensated taking against the officers directly, and may also have a claim against their agency.

    If the claim is against the officers, then they may bear the cost of the device. Split amongst them, it is probably not a great price.

    She might also have a claim for battery if she can make out a clearly established right not to be battered by armed thugs. I presume that they and their agency will argue that such a right is not well established, and many federal judges will agree.

  • Apr 30th, 2015 @ 5:55am

    Not Certain to Help Sales

    I imagine that this book will sell tonnes more copies as a result!

    Not so sure of that. If it is removed from the market it will be hard for the author to sell many copies. I have to think that someone screwed up pretty badly to grab someone's engagement/wedding pic and not clear the rights.

    Version 2, with a properly licensed photo, may get less publicity.

  • Apr 17th, 2015 @ 11:09pm

    (untitled comment)

    The really sad thing is that, assuming you bring FDCPA claims against them, there is probably no way to collect. They'll be out of state, or have no assets other than the questionable receivables.

  • Apr 3rd, 2015 @ 6:21am

    Re: West Virginia

    hence the West Virginia is for lovers motto

    That was ``Virginia is for lovers''. Ironic, too, in light of Loving v. Virginia, 388 US 1 (U.S. 1967), where the state tried unsuccessfully to maintain its ban on loving and marriage.

  • Apr 1st, 2015 @ 3:39am

    Re: Re:

    However, complaining to the police costs the business nothing.

    I'd love to think that the complainant would be required to show up in court as a witness.

    True, in this case the state got a default judgment, but at least the threat of having to show up in court might motivate them to do better. In this case, I'd probably want to try to vacate the conviction on the ground that there is no actual crime charged.

  • Mar 9th, 2015 @ 7:10am

    Re: [conditions of merger]

    [condition merger appoval on agreement not to lobby]
    including the support of bills and laws in their jurisdiction

    Fails. You cannot impose an unconstitutional condition in order to permit or license exercise of another. Aptheker v. Secretary of State, 378 U.S. 500 (US 1964).

    You would ask them to choose between the exercise of rights of speech and rights to associate in commerce.

  • Mar 5th, 2015 @ 4:32am

    Re: Re: Re: Minor change:

    form your own corporation and give a PO Box and answering service or standalone voicemail number as contact information.

    It may be easy, but it is not legally sufficient. You have to give at least a street address for your registered agent, who may be ``CT Registered Agent Corporation'' or ``Corporation Services Company''. Those are two of the biggest here, and probably they are to be found in other states as well.

    The registered agent companies just send you the documents when they get served, so you and they can be anywhere. Your business mailing address (the P.O. box) is probably at least close enough to where you really are to give some help if we need to find you. There are some requirements with these boxes as well, like giving your real address on the PO box form.

  • Mar 5th, 2015 @ 4:22am

    Re: [Possible California Ptfs in Florida]

    Wouldn't surprise me if Hollywood start to file cases in Florida against The Pirate Bay and other websites in the world

    It would not surprise me. However, at least a few of them will fight back, and there are some pleading problems for the folks. Especially in that ``other'' Hollywood, out in California.

    To sue someone from out of state, you have to plead the facts to bring them within the long-arm statute. The standard is not very high, Zippo Mfg v. Zippo Dot Com, 952 F.Supp. 1119, but you do have to both have and plead the contacts with Florida. International Shoe and all that.

    I suspect that most of the California ``Hollywood'' folks cannot even spell Florida, much less ``minimum contacts''. And for that matter, even if California were not full of loose nuts, Tallahassee is. Ever notice how close it is to Chattahoochee? There is probably a reason for that proximity.

    Our geniuses up there in Tally have probably entirely failed to consider how they might enforce such a requirement. I see some dormant commerce problems there, and no good way to distinguish a web site viewable in Florida from a clear channel radio station audible in Florida. Oh well, two more months and we can send them back to Chattahoochee for the next ten.

  • Jan 21st, 2015 @ 4:08am

    Re: [billfleming] real donuts

    You should have covered real donuts such as what they serve at Krispy Kreme.

    It is very hard to pass the ``hot now'' sign when it is lighted up. Even if one of those inferior cake donut places got a hot donuts sign, it would not be the same.

    You might run an ordinary red light, but why would you run the lighted ``hot now'' sign? Just inside, that machine is pushing them through the hot oil and then that waterfall glazer.

    I'll trade you two wall-marts if you'll put in a KK instead.

  • Jan 17th, 2015 @ 5:22am

    Re: [two different comments]

    So he was acquitted, or convicted? The article said he was convicted in municipal court, but the later says he was acquitted by the judge

    The article suggests that it was a trial de novo in ``real'' court following a conviction in municipal court. Some places still have municipal courts and it is not uncommon for the defendant to be able to demand a new trial in real court as a matter of right.

    Given the officer didn't feel offended (otherwise, he surely would've put that in his report)

    The general rule of thumb is that you cannot disturb the king's peace. In other words, someone who is not a cop has to complain or there is no disturbing of the peace.

    This still leaves the police with a fair amount of discretion. We have, here in the City, a fair number of street screechers who come out on Friday afternoons to yell at people about the need to adopt their religion. It disturbs downtown businesses, downtown pedestrians, even people inside offices with windows closed can hear these guys.

    A church north of town trains them in how to be loud. The training does not appear to include any reference to making salvation appealing. Indeed, if one were to judge by the street screechers, hell might be a more attractive option. However, the complaints to the police are not about the message, just the volume at which it is delivered.

    Complaints are frequent, but the police have declined to act. This is probably reprehensible on their part. I suspect that if someone were to go out there and yell rude words, it would get some attention.

    The cops are correctly fearful that the street screechers will at least have representation at all stages of any legal proceedings. The problem is that an arrest for the rude words would then be content-based.

  • Jan 17th, 2015 @ 4:39am


    And they call themselves a democratic republic

    Seems appropriate. The term ``democratic republic'' is usually used to refer to a certain class of freedom-loving countries, notably E. Germany and N. Korea.

  • Dec 30th, 2014 @ 3:52am

    Re: Re: [Quoted Text in Reply]

    If someone replies with my text quoted then they have committed copyright infringement

    Fair use. I am copying for purposes of criticism and education. I criticize your writing as ill-informed, and thereby educate others.

  • Dec 26th, 2014 @ 8:29am

    Right of First Refusal

    It is possible that the right of first refusal may have been lost when the academy did not exercise it at time of the original probate. Assuming always correct publication of notice and a hundred other things, most of which are covered by California law with which I am entirely unfamiliar.

    At any rate, I'd prefer to have the heir's case if I had to choose.

  • Dec 17th, 2014 @ 7:50pm

    Many Years Ago, And Perhaps Under Different Management

    There was a team in a mid-grade city which had horrible attendance. They would draw ~7000 people a night. This probably failed to please the owner.

    The owner also had a UHF TV station, no major network affiliation. He had hours of time to fill, and I suppose he really could not just run info-mercials all the time.

    I suppose it was a fortunate match. He decided to make sure that every home game was on TV. With home-team announcers. If you sat at home, watching his station, you'd watch the local game and hear the local announcers telling how great it was to be at the park.

    It affected attendance. It also affected the value of the TV station. Mr. Turner became very, very wealthy.

  • Dec 17th, 2014 @ 3:48am

    Re: "insanely profitable"

    professional baseball has had a long history of operating without huge taxpayer-borne subsidies and givaways

    Is your planet accepting new applicants? Because it sure sounds different from mine, where the cities routinely pony up new stadia and other goodies for baseball teams which might otherwise move. Indeed, they may move anyway. St Pete's team is already planning to vacate the expensive domed facility, and Miami's uses the threat of departure to weasel more tax funded goodies.

    And, lest we forget, the spring training stadium in Tampa.

  • Dec 15th, 2014 @ 11:56pm

    Re: Re:

    If Cheney hasn't read it yet, then how does he know it's full of crap?

    Well, we have not read Dick Cheney, and we know he is full of crap, so it must be possible to have the knowledge in an alternative manner.

  • Nov 24th, 2014 @ 5:43am

    Re: [who would represent Mr. Blanc] (as andrews)

    Blanc is a sexist, racist white male. How anyone could represent him is beyond belief.

    It is often the unpopular who require representation the most.

    In the criminal arena, for instance, someone has to defend the accused. I recall one case where everyone in the office knew the defendant did it, and to boot, no one liked that def. The only glitch was that, when [] reviewed the video to know what was coming from the other side, the video showed that def was not guilty and that the state had caused the evidence of innocence to disappear following the arrest. Speculate if you will as to the result if no one wanted to represent def.

    There are more unlovable crimes out there. Who would defend a person who acts improperly with children? Or even someone accused. Smoke, fire, right? Turns out it ain't necessarily so. It is easy to get convictions, especially with the relaxed rules of evidence used in such cases. The good news is that our conservative appeals courts tend to favor finality over correcting injustice so we need not burden our consciences with such cases.

    In the civil arena, attorneys often get unpopular clients. Would I defend the right of Illinois Nazis or Islamists to parade their obnoxious ideas? Sure. Same rule as for people whose ideas I favor. There will be a time when the ideas I prefer are disfavored, and I want that rule.

    With that in mind, sometimes the representation has to include telling the client to shut up and live with whatever offended them. There are a lot of things you cannot sue for. Well, you can sue, but you are likely to lose.

    I have been sued for being ugly, with the outcome you should expect. A smart lawyer will try to avoid going down that path with a client.

  • Aug 6th, 2011 @ 3:46pm

    Re: Re: Techwho?!? (as andrews)

    I'm afraid your rule does not work. Anyone, whether or not a lawyer, can bring their own suit. We call that filing pro se, and some of those pleadings are rather imaginative.

    With that in mind, however, I must admit that Mr. Wolk's position appears weak, and his judgment in the litigation appears questionable. However, I am not his lawyer, and in fact am not even licensed in his state.

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