A good deal of the footage coming out Ferguson, Missouri, this week has been provided by non-journalists, using their phones to record and photograph events. At the same time, reports claim that police are attempting to block both ordinary citizens and journalists from documenting the situation. What these officers either don’t know or aren’t saying is that you have the legal right to photograph the police, even when they tell you not to. [More]
A Bronx judge has ruled that saggy pants are not, in fact, illegal and do not constitute “Disorderly Conduct.” The ruling comes in a case where a gentleman was issued a summons because he was wearing “his pants down below his buttocks exposing underwear [and] potentially showing private parts,” says Gothamist. [More]
A federal judge yesterday bench slapped the Recording Industry of America, calling a jury’s $675,000 verdict against file sharer Joel Tenenbaum both eye-popping and unconstitutional. The judge struck a strikingly populist tone in reducing the verdict to $67,500, arguing that the same legal reasoning that protects large corporations from excessive punitive damages also protects “ordinary people” like Tenenbaum. [More]
Over at the Consumer Law & Policy Blog they’ve posted the abstract of a article that considers the constitutionality of credit card late fees. Apparently, there are “constitutional constraints upon the imposition of punitive damages.” Neat. The article by Seana Shiffrin and is called “Are Credit Card Late Fees Unconstitutional?”
State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co. v. Campbell articulated serious and specific constitutional constraints upon the imposition of punitive damages. Justice Kennedy’s majority opinion announced that, apart from exceptional cases, punitive damages should not exceed nine times the amount of the actual losses sustained by the plaintiff and should usually be far lower…
Apparently, we weren’t the only ones upset by what Consumerist commenter Hawkins described as Google’s “capitulation to the commie bastards”… although he followed it up with: “But I submit that a constant reminder, every time you search, that you’re being dicked again by your government is better than nothing.” Which are the exact words that Google themselves should have used at the press conference. You might want to submit your C.V. to Google P.R., Hawkins.