Miami Law in the News - w/e 30 September 2016

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The Leesburg Commercial Appeal quotes Caroline Mala Corbin in a story about the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals hearing a case against a school system’s refusal to allow a gay-straight alliance at a local middle school. Generally speaking, state courts should have the final word on the interpretation of state law, Corbin said.

The Tampa Bay Times quoted Mary Anne Franks on organizations who offer customers advice on self-defense claims. "This is basically preparing people: You're going to kill someone and you need to know what to do," Franks said.

The Christian Science Monitor quotes Mary Anne Franks on cyber harassment.  "Having a better sense of the prevalence and incidence of these crimes would help us, first, to understand their nature and dynamics," Franks said. "Requiring reports also forces agencies to be more transparent about their policies and can push them to improve them."

Yahoo! News picks up UM’s package on Miami Law’s new “Cert Talks” series and Sergio Campos’s discussion of the  Microsoft v. Baker case going before the Supreme Court in the coming session. "How the court decides this issue will have an enormous impact," said Campos, such as "whether more or less defective products get made and whether certain products get introduced to the market at all." 

The Crime Report quotes Donna Coker in a story about excessive incarceration rates in the United States, and the role of domestic violence victims.  “It’s just simply not the case that all victims of violent crimes, and certainly not all victims of nonviolent crimes, seek a punitive punishment for the offender,” Coker is quoted telling the Center for Court Innovation. “What they frequently seek is some assurance that it won’t happen to them again and some assurance that it won’t happen to somebody else.”

The Toronto Star quotes Mary Anne Franks about the U.S. Law Shield program that provides insurance for gun owners who may kill someone claiming self-defense. Franks said the “quite chilling” language deployed by these services is “priming people to look for situations where they can use their gun and not worry about any of the consequences after.” Rather than emphasizing de-escalation and non-lethal defense, she said, “What they’re saying is: ‘Do this risky thing, this risky thing that could be avoided, and then we’ll help you.’ ”

Driving magazine quotes Michael Froomkin about the loss of privacy in a world gathering personal information at an alarming rate. “Nobody who understands this can give those assurances,” Froomkin said. “The whole point is to find unpredictable correlations; to find what we didn’t know was there.” He notes there is a difference between the traditional black box model, where information can be pulled after the fact, and the telemetry model that is always on, always transmitting. “With the right to resell, all this data is warehoused and mined.” He mentions manufacturers, banks and insurance companies as first in line for such information.

The Miami Herald mentions Miami Law, the Center for Ethics & Public Service, and quotes Anthony Alfieri about shutting down the Coral Gables trolley garage. “It’s crucially important for the community to be able to participate in the process that determines the use of that space. It would be a kind of democratic tragedy if the community were deprived of the opportunity to participate in that decision-making.’’

The Pulse radio show in London, Ontario, on September 29, interviews Michael Froomkin about privacy and technology.

Vocativ quotes Mary Anne Franks about Photoshop and pornography. “While the cases you describe are horrific, there are more ambiguous scenarios: the Kanye West video that displays realistic nude replicas of famous people, the naked Donald Trump statues that appeared in various cities across the U.S.,” Franks said. “Photo manipulation is often used for artistic, political, and educational purposes, and as such any law regulating it runs the risk of chilling expression protected by the First Amendment.” 

CONTACT: Catharine Skipp at 305-284-9810 or cskipp@law.miami.edu