Archive for the ‘Legal’ Category

Save the Date! Berkshire Beyond Buffett. The Enduring Values of Values. Mon Dec 8th 5:45pm

Join us for a Rock Center for Corporate Governance panel:

5:45 – 6pm  Reception
6- 7:15pm Panel Discussion
Room 290, Stanford Law School
Crown Quadrangle

Berkshire Hathaway is one of the most highly regarded corporations in the world. Much of its success comes from Warren Buffett and the distinctive culture he has developed. What does this company look like from the inside? How does the company’s distinctive culture allow it to thrive? What will happen to the company when Buffett is no longer around?

SpeakersLawrence Cunningham, author of Berkshire Beyond Buffett and Professor of Law at George Washington University; Susan L. Decker, Director, Berkshire Hathaway Corporation, Costco Wholesale Corporation, and Intel Corporation; Brad Kinstler, President & CEO of See’s Candies and a longtime Berkshire Hathaway team member; and famed investor Tom Russo, partner at Gardner Russo & Gardner.

Brian Tayan will be moderating the panel. Tanyan is a Researcher at the Corporate Governance Research Initiative, Stanford Graduate School of Business and the Rock Center for Corporate Governance at Stanford University

REGISTER HERE. This event is open to the public.

Hackers Testing Corporations

Over the past few weeks the news has been covering a series of cyber attacks that have happened to companies such as Sony, Lockheed Martin. Hackers have claimed they are doing this to help corporations identify weaknesses in their system. One of the hackers famous for hacking the iPhone and PS2 has been hired by Facebook. Don’t forget the hold-up of Citigroup, $2.7million disappeared over thousands of accounts. Let’s see what else is in store for us.

SO Retaliation

This week the Supreme Court heard a case where a woman who had filed a discrimination lawsuit against her employer then subsequently found out her fiancé (significant other) was fired from the same company. The question for the court revolved around the issue of if he then had a right to sue the company for retaliation. The court unanimously stated that, yes he had the right to sue the employer for retaliating against her. In their comments the court affirmed that any attempt to intimidate those filing for discrimination by using close family members in retaliation was inappropriate. You can hear the voices of the two people involved in the suit in the NPR segment entitled “Court Upholds Law Barring Retaliation in Firing“.

Robocall Ban; Pipe Dream

As of today Robocalls by companies are banned, but (yes there is always a but) if the calls come from political parties, charities, public service announcement or are requesting information such as a survey they are allowed to call. Outside the jurisdiction of the FTC are banks, insurers, and phone companies, they along with collection agencies can continue to use the service. So don’t expect that mechanical voice to be gone anytime soon. Due to complaints by the public the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) the agency which watches out for US consumers was able to put the law into place in August 2008 and goes into effect today.

Free The Phones !

Are you interested in purchasing the new iphone 3GS? Then make sure you are on the AT&T network — or are prepared to switch. And if you are thinking of purchasing the new Palm® Pre™, you must be a Sprint customer. Cell phone service providers have exclusive agreements with manufacturers that seem to be detrimental to the average consumer looking for the best service and best phone for their needs.
According to an editorial in USA Today, the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice, the Federal Communications Commission and the Congress are currently looking into whether these agreements violate U.S. antitrust laws. is currently sponsoring a petition directed toward members of Congress and officials at the FCC, hoping to show public support for the freedom to choose network providers, phones and services.

Web Crime : Social Networks

In theory, everyone you have agreed to have as a “friend” on any number of given social networking sites really is your friend. However, criminals have found new ways of parting you from your money by exploiting the implied trust in social networks. A Business Week article entitled Cyberscams Befriend Social Networks found a 16.2 % increase since 2005 in the number of scams perpetrated through websites (as compared to email). In some cases the scams were brought to the attention of authorities by the members of a service.

Web Crime: Online Gambling

This is the first in a series of blogs which focuses on crime in the internet and what companies are doing (or not) to try and stop it. What brought this up? Well several things. First was a research request that came in requesting background information on cyberwarfare. Who knew something like that existed? Then a friend of mine had one of her social network sites hacked into. How safe are social networks really? Finally, a report this weekend by 60 Minutes on fraud in the online gambling industry prompted me to write this series.
The 60 Minutes report entitled How Online Gamblers Unmasked Cheaters tells the story of how online poker players uncovered the fact that someone was cheating. It turned out that one of the employees of an online gambling website was able to see everyone’s cards and cashed in on millions of dollars. What makes prosecuting especially difficult is that any online business generally works out of multiple locations in terms of the servers being housed perhaps in Europe, the programmers in Asia and the management in the United States. The article, on which the 60 Minutes report is based, in the Washington Post entitled Players Gamble on Honesty, Security of Internet Betting, estimates the online gambling industry to be worth about $18 billion a portion of that $4 billion is brought in by online poker alone.


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