Techlaw News Round-Up

May 23, 2019

ASA issues annual report
The Advertising Standards Authority and the Committee on Advertising Practice have published their annual report for 2018. In the report they highlight the work that they have been carrying out in relation to online advertising in particular. CAP is focusing on age-restricted advertisements for alcohol and food and drink high in fat, sugar and salt, using avatar technology to strengthen regulation of online advertising. It has already carried out a project in relation to gambling advertising online. Guidance has also been produced relating to influencer marketing and the ASA took action against online secondary ticketing providers.

European Parliament issues report on digital rules and potential future actions
The European Parliament Think Tank has issued a report reviewing the rules adopted to strengthen the Digital Single Market during the eighth parliamentary legislature (2014-2019). In the report, the think tank analyses the rights and obligations alongside the institutions and procedures created or improved in the DSM’s main policy fields (e-commerce and online platforms, e-government, data and artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, consumer protection and electronic communications networks and services). In addition, it examines the gaps that remain and the possible actions that can be taken during the forthcoming parliament’s legislature. The report was prepared for the European Parliament’s Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection at the request of the Policy Department A of the European Parliament.

Apple pledges clearer information on iPhone performance
Apple has committed to be clearer and more upfront with iPhone users about battery health and performance, following action by the Competition and Markets Authority. The CMA raised consumer law concerns with Apple in 2018 after finding people were not being warned clearly that their phone’s performance could slow down following a 2017 software update designed to manage demands on the battery. The undertakings require Apple always to notify people when issuing a planned software update if it is expected to materially change the impact of performance management on their phones.

UK government holds round table on IoT
The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport has held a roundtable with key Internet of Things manufacturers and retailers, along with Which? and the National Centre for Cybersecurity. The aim was for DCMS to understand the steps manufacturers are taking to secure products and ensure security good practice. The UK government has said that it will continue to work closely with industry to move the sector to a place where implementation of good practice, such as set out by the Code of Practice for Consumer IoT security and the ETSI TS 103 645, is commonplace.

European agencies strengthen collaboration to combat .eu domain abuse
EURid and EUIPO have expanded their services to holders of a European Union trade mark. Their collaboration means that EUTM applicants can check if an equivalent .eu domain name is available and eventually register it with the accredited registrars. Some people have taken advantage of early publication of EUTM applications and registered the EUTM as a .eu domain name in bad faith. Effectively reducing the risk of such cyber-squatting infringements requires adopting preventive actions such as raising awareness and pro-actively informing the EUTM holders. As of 18 May, holders and applicants of a EUTM can opt in to receive alerts as soon as a .eu domain name is registered that is identical to their EUTM (application). By receiving such alerts, EUTM holders are informed more quickly and may take appropriate action sooner.