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Week in Review

By Angela Peco
Edited by Elissa D. Hecker


Lawsuit Seeking to Preserve Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Moves Forward

Citing Present Trump's "racially charged language," Judge Garaufis of the District Court in Brooklyn ruled that a lawsuit seeking to preserve the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals ("DACA") could continue. The suit was brought by a coalition of immigration lawyers and a group of Democratic state attorneys general. Justice Department lawyers had filed a motion to dismiss, claiming that the plaintiffs had filed to make a persuasive case that DACA was rolled back because of a racial animus toward Latinos.

In rejecting the motion, Judge Garaufis pointed to Trump's numerous "racial slurs" and "epithets," both as President and candidate, stating that they had created a "plausible inference" that the decision to end DACA violated the equal protection clause.

The lawsuit's Administrative Procedure Act ("APA") claims were also allowed to proceed. The decision to rescind DACA was found to have violated the APA, a federal law that bars the government from repealing policies arbitrarily, capriciously or without a rational basis.


States to Challenge Trump Administration Over Census Citizenship Question

At least 12 states, including New York, have signaled that they would sue to block the Trump administration from adding a question about citizenship to the 2020 census. They argue that the question would violate the Constitution, which requires that all residents of the U.S. be counted in a decennial census, whether or not they are citizens. Opponents have also expressed concern about the impact of this move on planning decisions, including redrawing of political boundaries and the allocation of federal funding for states and cities.

The administration has said that the decision to gather citizenship data through the census was needed to better enforce the Voting Rights Act.


Environmental Protection Agency to Roll Back Pollution Rules for Automakers

The Trump administration is slated to weaken greenhouse gas emissions and fuel economy standards for automobiles, rolling back one of President Obama's signature efforts to combat climate change. The Environmental Protection Agency is expected to frame the initiative as eliminating a regulatory burden on automakers.

In California, state lawyers are expected to challenge the proposed federal standards by relying on a special waiver under the 1970 Clean Air Act. The waiver was a holdover from California's history of setting its own air pollution regulations before federal rules came into force, and it would allow the state to enforce stronger air pollution standards than those set by the federal government. Twelve other states, including New York, have historically followed California's lead.


Emoluments Case against President Trump to Proceed

A lawsuit filed by Washington, D.C. and the State of Maryland accuses President Trump of violating the emolument clause by failing to divorce himself from his businesses.

A federal judge in Maryland rejected the federal government's claims that the plaintiffs had not shown that they had suffered injuries. Judge Messitte limited the scope of the suit to the Trump International Hotel and Trump-owned businesses related to it. He also found that local governments "have alleged sufficient facts to show that the president's ownership in the hotel has had and almost certainly will continue to have an unlawful effect on competition."


Defense Team for President: Army of One

As the Mueller investigation enters its second phase and focuses on the question of a presidential interview, reports have surfaced that President Trump is having difficulties bringing lawyers on board. Discussions about the President's thinly staffed legal team continue when the head of his personal legal team, John Dowd, quit after determining that his client was not listening to his advice.


Trump Aide Spoke to Associate Tied to Russian Intelligence

According to a document released by Special Counsel Mueller, Trump campaign aide Rick Gates had repeated communications with a business associate tied to Russian intelligence. The associate is reportedly an individual who also worked for Paul Manafort. Both Manafort and Gates were indicted last year for money laundering and other financial crimes.


Visitors to U.S. Face Social Media Screening

The State Department proposed new rules that would require visa applicants to submit their social media user names for the previous five years. An estimated 14.7 million people will be impacted, including individuals who apply for nonimmigrant visas. The proposal covers 20 social media platforms.


Facebook Faces Pressure from Regulators and Law Enforcement over Privacy Policies; Centralizes Privacy Settings

The Federal Trade Commission ("FTC") has confirmed its investigation into how Facebook handles information about its users. The fallout continues after it was discovered that data collection firm Cambridge Analytica, which worked on the 2016 Trump campaign, gained access to the personal data of more than 50 million Facebook users.

The FTC wants to determine whether Facebook violated a consent decree it signed in 2011 to protect users' privacy. The decree required Facebook to notify and receive explicit permission from users before sharing their personal information beyond the limits dictated by their privacy settings. Each violation carries a penalty of up to $40,000 a day.

Facebook announced that it will roll out a centralized system for its users to control their privacy and security settings, rather than have users go to roughly 20 separate sections across the platform to change their settings.



Fair Housing Groups File Lawsuit against Facebook

In a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, fair housing groups claim that Facebook continues to discriminate against certain groups in the way that it allows advertisers to target the audience for their ads. Advertisers can customize their messages and who sees them, choosing from preset lists of demographics. Facebook had promised to crack down on advertisers who took advantage of those tools to show housing and employment ads to whites only. The groups want the court to require Facebook to develop a plan to remove any ability for advertisers to exclude certain groups from their housing-related ads.


China's State-Backed Technology Most Divisive Trade Issue

China's core industrial policy, known as "Made in China 2025," could be at the root of the looming trade fight between it and the U.S. The plan aims to make China globally competitive in industries like robotics, driverless cars, and advanced microchips, but U.S. officials strongly object to the prospect of having Chinese companies dominate these industries. The Trump administration announced tariffs on up to $60 billion worth of Chinese imports, and it has already threatened tariffs on imports from many of the industries being developed under the plan.


U.S Close to Trade Deal with South Korea

The Trump administration announced that a new trade deal with South Korea is nearing completion as it unveiled new tariffs targeting China. Trump has leveraged the threat of tariffs to gain concessions from South Korea on some of the biggest concerns for the U.S., including an agreement to lower trade barriers to vehicles imported from the U.S., with the number of vehicles that can be exported without meeting local safety requirements doubling to 50,000. In return, South Korea would be exempt from the steel tariffs.

Some labor groups have said the increased auto import numbers did not guarantee that automakers would be able to crack the notoriously hostile Korean market.


Trump's Negotiation Tactics on Trade Agreements

The White House has taken a contentious approach to negotiations, threatening harsh sanctions in an effort to extract concessions from trading partners and secure agreements quickly. President Trump and his chief trade negotiator, Robert Lighthizer, have set a series of crucial deadlines that will impact upcoming discussions. For instance, temporary exemptions on imports of steel and aluminum from U.S. allies are set to expire in May. The Trump administration is also demanding that the NAFTA rewrite be completed in a matter of weeks.

In the case of South Korea, the tactics returned results, although it is unclear how South Korea's concessions will materialize for American workers. Hastily drafted trade pacts also carry legal risks, and countries have already planned to challenge American trade actions at the World Trade Organization.


U.S. Expels Russian Diplomats over U.K Poisoning

In the largest mass expulsion of Russian personnel stationed in the U.S., President Trump ordered the expulsion of 60 Russian diplomats as a part of a coordinated campaign by two dozen countries to retaliate for the poisoning of a former Russian spy in Britain. The U.S. has also ordered the closure of the Russian Consulate in Seattle.

Russia has responded to what it described as an anti-Russian campaign orchestrated by the U.S. and Britain by announcing that it will expel 60 American diplomats while also ordering the closing of the American consulate in St. Petersburg.



Trump Administration's Judicial Selection Process Aims to Shrink "Administrative State"

The White House has laid out a plan to nominate judges devoted to a legal doctrine that shrinks "the administrative state," and challenges the broad power that federal agencies have to interpret laws and enforce regulations. The architect of the administration's selection process, Donald F. McGahn II, noted that previous presidents had used "single-issue litmus tests" as part of their criteria. That approach has since changed. The new plan pairs the administration's deregulation orders with judicial nominees who are skeptical of the authority vested in executive agencies.


Years of Harassment Claims in Justice Department

Leadership at the Justice Department's death penalty unit promoted gender bias and a "sexualized environment," according to court records and internal documents. Employee complaints were filed with Justice officials, the inspector general and the Equal Employment Opportunity
Commission, though some allegations went unaddressed for years.

The unit was created in 1998 to help the attorney general decide when to apply capital punishment. A defendant in Indiana has asked for the government to drop the death penalty recommendation in his case, given the unit's conduct issues.


Albany Strikes Budget Deal

The $168 billion budget deal would grant New Yorkers some protection from the federal tax plan, pour an addition $250 million into public housing projects, and enact new sexual harassment policies. Governor Cuomo remarked that his priority going forward would be to overturn the federal cap on deductions of state, local, and property taxes. In the meantime, the budget provides for an optional employer-side payroll tax to replace an employee-side state income tax, and the creation of two state charitable funds for health and education, with New Yorkers' donations deducted from their federal and state tax returns.

Financial considerations seemed to have driven much of the closed door budget discussions, deferring action on contentious policy issues like gun policy and bail reform.


New York State Revises Sexual Harassment Laws

New York will ban most nondisclosure agreements and mandatory arbitration clauses in sexual harassment complaints, extending the ban to both the public and private sectors. In addition, government employees found responsible of committing harassment will have to refund any taxpayer-funded payouts within 90 days. The bill also requires employers to develop anti-harassment policies and training, and bars the state from awarding bids to non-compliant companies. It also extends protections to independent contractors.

Despite acknowledging the bill's benefits, critics have pointed to its failure to actually define sexual harassment, warning that the policies could be narrowly interpreted. The bill has passed both the Assembly and the Senate and is expected to be signed into law soon.


Governor Cuomo Provides New Interpretations of Campaign Contribution Rules

Governor Cuomo's office has offered new interpretations of a directive that banned appointees to state boards and commissions from donating to or fundraising for his campaign. New disclaimer language on Cuomo's campaign website states that the executive order applies only to board members who could be fired by the governor. Secondly, in order to come under the ban, individuals also have to hold positions that require them to file financial disclosure statements.

The new interpretation would exclude appointees to the New York Power Authority and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, among others.

It is also at odds with the ethics guidelines of some state boards, which prohibit appointed board members from donating.


Criminal Defense Lawyer Taken Off Cases for Spending Too Much Time

A Texas criminal defense lawyer filed suit against the judge who appoints lawyers for indigent defendants in his courtroom. The attorney claims that the judge pulled him off cases because he spent too much time on them, and refused to assign new ones, because "he sought to provide a vigorous legal and factual defense for his clients." The lawyer asks to be reinstated.

The case exposes an important issue - indigent defense lawyers often receive their assignments from the judges in whose courtrooms they appear. Experts say that this discourages a robust defense. A 2011 study found that "judges have incentives to appoint counsel who file fewer pretrial motions, ask fewer questions during voir dire, raise fewer objections, and present fewer witnesses." Clients also fared better when they were represented by an independent public defender organization rather than a lawyer appointed by a judge.


Connecticut Rejects Chief Justice Nominee

In an extremely acrimonious confirmation process, Connecticut's Senate rejected Justice Andrew J. McDonald's nomination with a 19 to 16 vote. Justice McDonald faced Republican opposition stemming from his role in a Supreme Court decision on the repeal of the death penalty, as well as his close ties to Governor Malloy. As associate justice, he was part of the majority ruling that held that the state's law abolishing capital punishment also applied to inmates sentences before the law went into effect. Justice McDonald's supporters suggested that some of the opposition may have also been motivated by his sexual orientation.


Adnan Syed of Podcast "Serial" Granted New Trial by Appeals Court

Upholding a lower court's 2016 ruling, the Maryland Court of Special Appeals ordered a new trial for Adnan Syed, pointing to his defense lawyer's failure to question a potential alibi witness at his trial. Syed was convicted of murdering his high-school girlfriend in 2000. His case captured national attention when it became the subject of the first season of "Serial".


Woman Imprisoned in South Africa for Racist Speech

A woman was convicted and sentenced to three years in prison pursuant to a statute barring verbal racial abuse directed at another person. She was caught repeatedly insulting a black police officer and making threats in a racist rant captured on video in 2016. This is a landmark decision, as it is the first time a person has been sent to prison under the "crimen injuria" statute; previous prosecutions had only led to fines.


Ecuador Suspends Internet Access for Assange

Ecuador's suspension of Julian Assange's internet comes out of concern that Assange was harming Ecuador's relationship with the U.K. and other European nations through his social media messages. Although Ecuador did not point to specific posts, it is believed that the messages in question relate to tweets in which Assange criticized Western nations for expelling Russian diplomats.


Below are categories divided into Entertainment, Arts, Sports, and Media


FX Prevails in 'Feud' Defamation Suit

A California appellate court dismissed a defamation lawsuit brought by Olivia de Havilland over her portrayal in the 2017 docuseries "Feud: Better and Joan". Among her objections were that she did not consent to the use of her likeness in the show and that her portrayal is inaccurate.

FX previously argued that the lawsuit should be dismissed on the ground of California's anti-Slapp (Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation) statute, applicable to lawsuits that may have a chilling effect on free speech. The Motion Picture Association of America and Netflix, the latter of which signed Feud's producer to a production deal, filed an amicus brief in support of FX.


Investigation into Motion Picture Academy President Finds No Merit in Accusations

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences ("the Academy")concluded that an allegation of sexual harassment against its president, John Bailey, had no merit.

After voting to expel Harvey Weinstein, the Academy decided to establish a code of conduct and procedures for investigating allegations of misconduct against its members. In the first test of this new system, Bailey himself pointed out that the Academy had failed to adhere to some of its procedures, including ensuring anonymity for both accuser and accused.


Photographer Nicholas Nixon Retires from Massachusetts College of Art and Design Following Allegations

Nicholas Nixon retired from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design midsemester, following allegations of inappropriate behavior. College President David Nelson announced that the school will be investigating whether Nixon violated Title IX in making inappropriate comments in the classroom. Nixon is best known for "The Brown Sisters," a series of portraits documenting four sisters for a period of 40 consecutive years.


Russell Simmons Faces New $10 Million Lawsuit Alleging Rape

A lawsuit accuses Russell Simmons of rape and severe emotional distress. The accusations stem from an incident in a Sacramento hotel room. Simmons once again denied the allegations in a statement where he also refers to the multiple lie detector tests he has passed. This is the second multi-million dollar lawsuit filed against Simmons in recent months.


Cosby Trial Judge Rejects Claim of Bias

A Pennsylvania judge rejected a defense motion in which Cosby's lawyers argued that the judge should recuse himself because his wife's support
of sexual assault victims had created an appearance of bias. Deborah O'Neill is a therapist at the University of Pennsylvania center, where she counsels students who have been sexually assaulted.

According to Cosby's lawyers, the judge's recent rulings, such as admitting additional female accusers to testify at the trial, were evidence that he was influenced by his wife's views. The defense argued that Ms. O'Neill had also donated "marital assets" to a campus group that donates to another organization that plans to demonstrate outside the courthouse when the retrial begins. University documents showed that the school, and not the judge's wife, had made the donation.


DMX Defense Team Plays Rapper's Recording at Sentencing

Rapper DMX, whose real name is Earl Simmons, was sentenced to a year in prison for tax evasion. Simmons' defense lawyer asked for leniency, referencing his client's difficult upbringing, and played a recording of DMX's "Slippin'," an audio presentation meant to give the court a sense of "raw Earl".


Record Executive Charlie Walk is Out of the Republic Group

Charlie Walk, the president of the Republic Group, and the company have parted ways, following an investigation into allegations of persistent harassment and inappropriate touching. Walk also appeared as a judge on Fox's singing competition show "The Four".



"Carousel" Revival Will Credit Original Choreographer, Agnes de Mille

Agnes de Mille will now be credited for her original choreography in the revised Playbill of Broadway's "Carousel" revival. De Mille was known for advancing the use and integration of narrative dance into a show's storytelling, which was considered an important development in musical theatre.

Prior to her death, De Mille had reached an agreement with the Rodgers & Hammerstein Organization ("R&H"), which owns the rights to her work on "Carousel" and "Oklahoma!," to have her authorship acknowledged in future productions. The show's producer, Scott Rudin, said he was initially unaware of any commitment to de Mille, while R & H characterized this as an inadvertent and accidental omission of its credit obligation to her.


Book Praising Hitler Removed from Publisher's Website

A book equating Hitler with influential world leaders was removed from the publisher's online store after a global human rights organization criticized the decision to include Hitler in the book. The book spotlights 11 world leaders praised for their devotion to their respective countries and people, and is published by the Pegasus imprint of B. Jain Publishing Group of India.


Cancelled Deals and Pulped Books as Publishers Deal with Sexual Misconduct

As allegations of sexual harassment sweep through the publishing industry, publishing companies are facing painful trade-offs as they cut ties with accused authors. Charlesbridge, for instance, decided to postpone a picture book's publication in response to sexual harassment accusations against the book's illustrator. The author of Mario and the Hole in the Sky, a picture book about Mexico-born chemist and Nobel Prize winner Mario Molina, supported the decision to postpone publication until a new illustrator is hired to complete the work.

Other publishers have cancelled book deals altogether, much like Penguin Press did in scrapping a forthcoming book co-authored by Mark Halperin after it emerged that Halperin had sexually harassed multiple women at ABC News. Some publishing houses are expanding the use of morals clauses and author conduct clauses in book contracts, which allow publishers to cancel book deals if an author is credibly accused of unethical behavior.



National Football League Cheerleader Files Discrimination Complaint Against New Orleans Saints

A former National Football League ("NFL") cheerleader filed a discrimination complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"). She was fired by the New Orleans Saints for violating a social media policy that she says did not apply to the team's male players.

At issue is the Saints' anti-fraternization policy that requires cheerleaders to avoid contact with players, in person or online. According to the team, the rules are designed to protect cheerleaders, but the onus is on the women to block players on social media and avoid with them. An arbitration hearing is expected next.

The case raises important questions for the NFL. In past cases focusing on unfair pay for cheerleaders, it successfully argued that cheerleaders were team, and not its, employees. The recent complaint before the EEOC argues that cheerleaders qualify as NFL personnel and warrant protection under its personal conduct policy.


Spending Bill Provision Will Strip Minor League Players of Federal Minimum Wage Protection

The "Save America's Pastime Act," included in the $1.3 trillion spending bill, would exempt minor leagues from federal minimum and overtime wage law, taking away minimum wage rights for minor-league baseball players, thereby making them "apprentices".

The idea was introduced in a 2016 House bill that aimed to protect minor league baseball by shielding teams from devastating cost increases that could imperil both teams and local economies, even though major league teams are responsible for the salaries of their minor leagues. The provision also appears to preempt a class action lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court in San Francisco by three players who allege that the MLB and its teams violate the Fair Labor Standards Act and state minimum and overtime requirements for a work week they estimated at 50 to 60 hours. Monthly minimum salaries for most players on minor league rosters are low: $1,100 at rookie ball and Class A; $1,500 at Double-A and $2,150 at Triple-A.



Ticket Brokers Sue Dodgers over Team's Deal with Eventellect

Connecticut-based Prestige Entertainment is among a group of ticket brokers suing the Dodgers and owner Guggenheim Baseball Management for breach of contract and promissory fraud relating to the team's recent partnership with ticket distribution company Eventellect.

The plaintiffs claim that they propped up Dodgers ticket sales for years with the expectation that they would have a right to those tickets and would be able to recoup profits from them once the team turned things around. Though the group does not specify an amount for damages, the brokers are aiming for an injunction to get their seats back.


Yankees Receive Cease-and-Desist From Major League Baseball Over Player Images in Beer

The "cease-and-desist" order from Major League Baseball ("MLB") came after imprints of players' faces started appearing in beer at a media event. MLB does not specifically prohibit players from alcohol-related advertising, but a spokesman added that "if [an activity] involves sales, the player, team and potentially MLB would have to sign off." A Yankees spokesperson said the event was a chance to test the image machine and that the organization has no current plans to use it at Yankee Stadium. The machine capable of imprinting players' faces on beer foam is called Beer Ripples, and its company has denied involvement.


NCAA to Face Trial over Athlete Compensation Lawsuits

Following a ruling by U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken, the same judge who oversaw the O'Bannon antitrust trial, the NCAA will have to return to court in December to defend its new limits on the compensation college athletes receive.

The plaintiffs seek to prevent the NCAA and 11 major conferences from collectively confining athletes to receiving scholarships covering tuition, fees, room, board, books and incidental costs of attending college. In turn, they have proposed that limits on athletes' compensation be set on a conference-by-conference basis. They have also suggested that "athletes be allowed to receive benefits above the cost of attendance that are related to education and/or are incidental to their participation in their sports."


Appeals Court Ruling Expected in the Era of Extended Safety Netting in Baseball

All 30 MLB teams are now in compliance with a 2015 memo from Commissioner Rob Manfred recommending extended netting to make the experience safer for fans.

Injured fans are continuing to challenge the "baseball rule" that has shielded clubs from liability if a fan is injured by a ball or a bat "prior to, during, or subsequent to, the actual playing of the game." In fact, a disclaimer has been printed on the back of every MLB ticket since 1913. Of the approximately 1,750 fans who are injured at major league games each year, only a few have successfully sued. The Missouri, Idaho, and Indiana Supreme Courts are among those that have refused to enforce the baseball rule, although it is still unclear whether this indicates a broader shift in legal attitudes towards it.

The New York State Court of Appeals is expected to rule soon on whether a lawsuit against the Yankees and the MLB can proceed. The plaintiff was injured by a foul ball in a 2011 game, and his original lawsuit was dismissed in 2015.


Sources Point to Changes to MLB Players Association Leadership

According to The Athletic, a number of MLB players and agents are "upset by the difficulties many free agents experienced in the open market" this offseason, and some are allegedly agitating to remove MLB Players Association Executive Director Tony Clark. Concerns have been raised about the Collective Bargaining Agreement, which included modest increases in the luxury-tax thresholds and failed to address what has been referred to as the "race to the bottom" by rebuilding clubs.


Alvarez Accused of Doping; Signs Point to Canelo-GGG Cancellation

The Executive Director of the Nevada State Athletic Commission ("NSAC") has filed a formal complaint against boxer Canelo Alvarez for doping violations. Alvarez tested positive twice for clenbuterol in random urine tests conducted by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association in Guadalajara, Mexico. Clenbuterol is classified as a prohibited anabolic agent, which Alvarez claims he was exposed to after eating contaminated beef in Mexico.

The complaint comes after the NSAC had already issued Alvarez a temporary suspension and required him to appear at a commission hearing on April 10, a date only a few weeks removed from the much-anticipated May 5th rematch between he and Golovkin. With the filing of the complaint, the disciplinary hearing will now be held during the NSAC's meeting on April 18th. Alvarez faces a minimum one-year suspension for a first-time offense, but the NSAC could cut it to six months if he cooperates. The suspension would be retroactive to the date of the first positive test, which means that even a six-month suspension would not make Alvarez eligible to box again until August.


New NFL Rule Against Illegal Hits

The NFL is making it a 15-yard penalty for any player to lower his head to initiate a hit with his helmet. A decision is pending on whether the rule will be included in replay reviews.


Union Files Grievance with Canadian Football League for Failing to Protect Players

In recent comments to Canadian media, Canadian Football League ("CFL") Commissioner Randy Ambrosie said that it is not important for him to have a position on the connection between football-related head injuries and CTE, but that the CFL continues to focus on the safety of the game. The comments are particularly relevant, given that the CFL Players Association recently filed a grievance against the CFL and its nine teams on behalf of all current and former players. The union claims that the CFL "failed to protect players from injuries, failed to warn them of the risks and dangers of injuries and failed to compensate players who sustain injuries."

The grievance comes after the Supreme Court of Canada ruled on March 15th that it will not hear the case of former CFL-er Arland Bruce, who wanted to sue the CFL over concussion trauma. The British Columbia Court of Appeal had previously dismissed that lawsuit, ruling that unionized employees must use labour arbitration to resolve disputes that are part of the collective bargaining agreement.



Russia Accuses U.S. of Trying to Bar Wrestlers

Russian Foreign Ministry officials accuse the U.S. of trying to bar Russian wrestlers from entering the U.S. for the upcoming freestyle wrestling World Cup in Iowa. They claim that the U.S. embassy in Moscow refused to arrange visa interviews for the Russian team.


Would European States Boycott the 2018 FIFA World Cup?

Following reports that certain member states had decided to boycott the FIFA World Cup in Russia, the European Commission issued what can best be described as neither a confirmation nor a denial of the rumors. A spokesperson said that representatives were not ready to announce whether they would be in attendance. The 2018 World Cup will take place in 11 cities across Russia.


Australian Cricket Team Captain Admits to Ball-Tampering

Steve Smith issued a public apology after admitting to having concocted a plot with teammates to doctor the cricket ball by scuffing it with sandpaper during a match in South Africa. Scuffing can make the ball act unpredictably, compromising a batsman's ability to hit. The cheating was caught on video. Cricket Australia, the sport's governing body, barred Smith and his vice captain from play for a year. A third player was barred for nine months, and the team's head coach has since resigned, although he was not implicated in the scandal.



Proposed Federal Communications Commission Rule Limits China's Telecom Reach

The Federal Communications Commission ("FCC") has proposed a rule to tighten restrictions on companies building internet infrastructure in the United States. The rule would prohibit carriers from using money from the Universal Service Fund to buy gear from telecom suppliers or subcontractors deemed to pose national security risks.

The FCC has not yet determined how it would identify companies that pose a risk to telecom systems, but many view this as targeting Huawei, China's giant telecommunications equipment maker. The $8.5 billion Universal Service Fund subsidizes phone, wireless and broadband service to poor and remote communities. As a result, the move may impact Huawei's deals with small and rural carriers. An initial vote on the proposed rule is schedule for April 17th.

With respect to military spending authorization, Congress has already prohibited the Pentagon from buying network equipment from either Huawei or ZTE, both Chinese equipment makers.


Turner Executive Testifies in Support of AT&T/Time Warner Merger

Turner's chief executive disputed the government's position that the AT&T and Time Warner merger would give AT&T the incentive to use Turner
Broadcasting as a negotiating weapon against cable, satellite, and online streaming providers.

The Justice Department maintains that Turner owns "must-have" channels like CNN and TNT, and that it would expect the merged company to use them as leverage in negotiations. The Justice Department has also zeroed in on the importance of Turner's exclusive sports rights, which include professional basketball games for which Turner pays $1 billion each year.

Testimony by AT&T rivals so far has supported the government's claim that the merger would unfairly harm businesses that offer Turner's channels.


Advertisers Drop Laura Ingraham's Show on Fox

Companies like TripAdvisor, Wayfair, Hulu, Johnson & Johnson, and Nestle pulled their advertising after Laura Ingraham mocked Parkland student David Hogg over his college rejections in a tweet earlier this week. In February, Ingraham also drew criticism after her "shut up and dribble" comments aimed at socially active basketball players.


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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on April 1, 2018 9:49 PM.

The previous post in this blog was Great Minds v. FedEx Office & Print Servs., Inc..

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