Jimmy StewartThis month I am flushing the format to talk about jury duty. I recently got selected to serve on a jury in a civil case. The experience fascinated me because, as a civil trial lawyer myself, it gave me the opportunity to see a trial from a juror’s perspective in the courtroom and in the

Thursday before Super Bowl XLIX in Phoenix Ima Goen Nomattawatta, a huge Patriots fan, found an online broker Izzure Scalp with Super Bowl tickets for $2,500 apiece. Not believing that he could get 4 tickets at only $750 above face value, Nomattawatta quickly called three buddies, found flights and non-refundable hotel rooms, and all four

Cyber terrorism, North Korea, Sony, extortion, free speech, The Interview, international relations, journalistic ethics, cyber security… can it get any better than this?

Implausible – a C grade comedy movie The Interview about two hapless TV journalists recruited by the CIA to assassinate a sitting world leader North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un.

Appalling

Last month I wrote about employers’ potential liability for Ebola in the workplace.  Now state governments are seeking to quarantine citizens to protect against the possibility of a health epidemic.  An inherent conflict exists between individual freedoms and the government’s interest to protect public health. Can the government quarantine an individual? What happens if

I.M. Dense, a stockbroker employed by BI Lough was driving to a non-business event when he struck and injured a motorcyclist. On personal time, in a personal vehicle and using a personal cell phone, Dense admitted that he was responding with text messages to “cold call” responses from earlier in the day. “Cold calls” are a common practice at BI Lough. Did I.M. Dense break the law? Even if he did not commit a crime / violation, is he responsible just for being on the phone? What about Dense’s employer BI Lough?

Texting Against the Law?

Maybe. It depends upon where I.M. Dense was and how old he is. If he is under 18 or in a school zone, he broke state law. Texas state law prohibits anyone under the age of 18 from driving and using wireless communications devices or from using a handheld device in a school zone. If I.M. Dense was texting and driving within the city limits of any one of 23 Texas towns including, for example, Austin, El Paso and San Antonio, he violated a city ordinance. Being ticketed for violating a city ordinance does not carry the same penalties as a state moving violation that would affect Dense’s driving record.


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Last month one of our lead articles was Cyber Security: Forewarned is Fair-Warned.

Last week the New York Times published an article reporting that at least 1.2 billion usernames and passwords were hacked by a Russian cybercrime group by the name of CyberVor from upwards of 420,000 distinct web sites.

A very interesting CNN

When Wei Wong, owner of Sushi Mushi, a popular Japanese food bistro in Texas, installed a phone add-on to take credit and debit card payments straight from his employees’ phones, his revenues skyrocketed. Yesterday the Feds told him that his customers’ credit and debit card numbers were posted for sale on an underground website. Malware planted in his employees’ point-of-sale telephone systems snared over 10,000 card numbers, encrypted PINs, and CVV codes. Every hacker in the Ukraine now wants their own missile launch system. Is Sushi Mushi to blame?
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Regardless of their personal stance on any hot-button social issue, most business owners do not want their place of business to be the focus of demonstrations on that issue – wisely so, because rarely does being the focus of a political demonstration go hand-in-hand with making money.  

However, recently some gun enthusiasts in Dallas put Chipotle in the spotlight by openly carrying loaded semi-automatic rifles – commonly known as “assault rifles” – into a downtown Dallas area Chipotle’s restaurant. Chipotle released a statement asking customers not to bring firearms into their restaurants, reading in part:  

Recently participants from an “open carry” demonstration in Texas brought guns (including military-style assault rifles) into one of our restaurants, causing many of our customers anxiety and discomfort. Because of this, we are respectfully asking that customers not bring guns into our restaurants, unless they are authorized law enforcement personnel. 
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Special thanks to Gray Reed’s Drew York for this blog contribution.

Bedder Sailz, a salesman for Orange Computers, Inc., lives in Seattle, Washington, and frequently travels on business. After successfully closing a computer deal in Dallas, Sailz catches East-West-Wings (EWW) flight #101 from Dallas home to Seattle. When the plane’s front wheel collapses on landing, Bedder sustaines back and neck injuries sending him to a Seattle hospital.  To recover his medical expenses and lost wages, Bedder files suit – not in his home state of Washington, but in California – against EWW, a Texas corporation headquartered in Dallas, alleging that EWW’s flights to leased gates at LA International Airport were “continuous and systematic contacts” permitting Bedder to sue there.  Where should EWW be sued? In Dallas, its HQ? In Seattle, where the wheel collapsed? Or, in California, where Bedder thinks he will get a more sympathetic jury?

Not surprisingly, Bedder’s lawyers prefer to “forum shop” to file his claim in California, believing that California courts are most friendly to his claim. EWW argues its “home court” of Dallas– where a jury is more likely to be friends, neighbors and family members of employees and happy customers.


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Aaron Elvis is a world-renowned chemist.  His latest paper explaining the chemical origins of life has received unprecedented acclaim in the scientific community.  However, there is a small problem.  Elvis manipulated some of his test results upon which the paper was based, and now one of his graduate students is about to expose Elvis as