December 2013                          News | Upcoming Programs & CLE | Get Involved


Criminal Trials in the 21st Century: Exploring the Legal and Ethical Issues Presented by the Electronic Age
December 16
6:00 - 8:00 PM

In this “electronic age,” certain important and recurring practical and ethical issues arise ranging from the use of evidence found on the Internet to the potential pitfalls for judges' use of social networking sites. This panel discusses these and other practical and legal issues facing attorneys and judgess during court proceedings.


Video Replay
Art Law 101: The Basics

December 19
9:00 AM -
12:00 PM

A panel of experienced practitioners provide the basics of “art law.” Subjects addressed included: Art Transactions (title and authenticity issues); Copyright, Moral Rights and other IP Issues; Art Financing and Museum Law.

Ethical Dangers of Lawyers Using Technology & Social Media
January 14, 2014
9:30 - 11:30 AM

This program will present an overview of the most common forms of electronic communications used by lawyers and the pitfalls to be avoided. Hypotheticals will highlight real life problems and practical solutions.

Missed a Program? You Can Still Benefit! CLE Programs' CDs, DVDs and other course
materials can be found on the website.


In the News: 3D Printing
With the increasing interest in and availability of 3D printing technology, lawmakers and policymakers are attempting to parse through the various legal issues such technology could present. In October, our Trademarks and Unfair Competition Committee hosted a panel discussion on how this innovative technology is raising novel intellectual property issues as it brings sophisticated manufacturing capabilities into homes and offices. One issue that has been a topic of concern for legislators at all levels of government is the ability to create 3D printed firearms. Legislation has been introduced in response to reports that individuals have printed plastic firearms undetectable by metal detectors from designs posted on the internet. Bills have been introduced to ban such firearms in the New York City Council, New York State Legislature and most recently by Representative Steve Israel, who introduced the Undetectable Firearms Modernization Act in Congress. As 3D printing is a relatively new issue, legislation in this area is still in its early stages. However, as issues continue to emerge surrounding the technology and its potential ramifications, we can expect to see greater focus on legislative fixes.

Noteworthy Cases
The Copyright & Literary Property and Trademarks & Unfair Competition Committees regularly track current issues as they appear in the courts. The Committees have noted the following recent significant developments.

Copycat Competitors
In the ongoing battle between over-the-air-broadcasters and Aereo, as well as Aereo’s copycat competitor FilmOn (formerly known AereoKiller), the U.S. District Court of Massachusetts, based in Boston, issued its anxiously awaited decision for Hearst Station v. Aereo Inc. on October 8, denying Hearst Stations Inc. (as the owner of a local TV station) a preliminary injunction against Aereo, which rolled out its retransmission streaming over-the-Internet antenna service in the Boston area in May of this year and continues to aggressively expand into other parts of the country. The court sided with the Second Circuit’s opinion in WNET, Thirteen v. Aereo, Inc., which held that Aereo’s technology system incorporating single-user dedicated dime-size antennas resulted in the transmission of a unique copy of a copyrighted broadcast work to a single unique user, and was therefore not a “public performance” that infringed the broadcasters’ exclusive right to publicly perform their works. To read the decision, click here.

Copyright Infringement
The Ninth Circuit decision of first impression for that Court issued November 6 in Seven Arts v. Content Media and Paramount Pictures Corp. holds that “an untimely ownership claim will bar a claim for copyright infringement where the gravamen of the dispute is ownership, at least where, as [in this case], the parties are in a close relationship.” To read the decision, click here .

Starbucks Episode VI
On November 15, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit handed down its latest decision in Starbucks Corp. v. Wolfe’s Borough Coffee, Inc. It held that a defendant’s use of a mark that was intended to create an association with plaintiff’s famous and distinctive mark does not dilute the famous mark, where the marks were “minimally similar” and the evidence of actual association weighed only “minimally” in plaintiff’s favor. In reaching its conclusion, the court emphasized the importance of considering the marks at issue as they are actually used in the marketplace. Click here for a summary of the decision.

Committee Involvement--It's Never too Late
Committees are how the City Bar’s work gets done. Working on a committee can give you great experience while opening up a number of career doors, some you may not even anticipate.

A full list of the City Bar committees along with a brief description of each and an application form can be found on the City Bar’s website. As a number of City Bar committees have more applicants than available slots, please consider applying to more than one committee.

Legislative Affairs
Have an interest in or questions about the City Bar’s legislative work? Send an email to, visit our website or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Updates include recent City Bar reports, news and upcoming programs in a particular practice area and are issued periodically to City Bar members.