Barclays v TheFlyOnTheWall.com

EFF the Citizen Media Law Project (CMLP) and Public Citizen have urged the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit to consider the critical First Amendment questions at issue in a case asserting "hot news misappropriation" -- a doctrine that a federal court used to put time limit restrictions on the reporting of facts.

The defendant in the case TheFlyOnTheWall.com had gathered stock recommendations from investment banking firms like Merrill Lynch Morgan Stanley and Lehman Brothers and reported them on its website. The firms sued TheFlyOnTheWall.com claiming that the information was "hot news" and the website was free-riding on the firms' work in creating the recommendations. A federal court agreed with the investment banks and ordered TheFlyOnTheWall.com to delay reporting of the information for two hours after the reports are released.

Applying heightened First Amendment scrutiny is especially important now as the Internet is increasingly allowing Americans to publicly gather share and comment on the news of the day. Misuse of the "hot news" doctrine could stifle this extraordinary growth of free expression.

Stay in Touch

NSA Spying

EFF is leading the fight against the NSA's illegal mass surveillance program. Learn more about what the program is, how it works, and what you can do.

Follow EFF

The owner of our Stupid Patent of the Month has been suing the entire Internet over its "virtual cabinets" patent. https://www.eff.org/deeplinks...

Jun 30 @ 4:55pm

A recent ruling by a federal court gives us another reason to fear the pending changes to Rule 41. https://www.eff.org/deeplinks...

Jun 30 @ 4:44pm

Secret FBI docs obtained by The Intercept reveal major lack of legal oversight on FBI surveillance of journalists. https://freedom.press/blog/20...

Jun 30 @ 4:30pm
JavaScript license information