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Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Photograph with care

As an amateur photographer (check out my photo blog, but don't click on the "Next Blog" button), legal issues with respect to photography interest me greatly. I ran across the Picture Archive Council of America's Special Release List "of properties and objects that may cause problems if shown photographically."


Friday, March 25, 2005

What does this say about Ohio?

I'm probably just over suspicious, but I was just reviewing the IRS's Form 9465 - Installment Agreement Request (not for me, I'm getting a refund this year). The instructions lists the location that you mail the form to, depending upon what state you live in. All IRS service facilities service between 4 - 14 states. Except for the Memphis, TN facility, which services requests from Ohio only. Tennessee residents send their requests to Austin, TX!

I know Ohio's economy is not exactly the best right now, but does the IRS think that a disproportionately large amount of Ohio residents will be filing such requests? Or is it that the Memphis facility is closing? Ohio residents are instructed to mail the form to Fresno, CA if filed after June 30, 2005.


Monday, March 21, 2005

Ownership and Access in Scholarly Publishing

The University of Maryland (UMB) Health Sciences and Human Services Library (HS/HSL) and the Johns Hopkins University (JHU) Libraries are co-hosting a free Web cast to inform academic faculty, graduate students, and staff on publishing trends and explain new models likely to affect their professional communication and research. The forum is scheduled from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. EST on Wednesday, April 6, 2005.


Monday, March 14, 2005

Back from vacation

I'm back from a week long cruise on the Disney Cruise Line's ship The Magic. Posting to resume shortly after I catch up a bit.


Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Online Retailers Pursue Teenagers - NY Times

The New York Times (free registration required) reports on the various efforts by online retailers, such as Macy's, Nike, and Abercrombie & Fitch's Hollister Co., to market to teenagers.

Viewing the privacy policies of these websites reveals a common theme:

HollisterCo.com is not directed at anyone under the age of 13, and no one under the age of 13 should provide personal information on this Web site. Hollister Co.

You must be 13 or older in order to submit any personal information to our website ...
Thisit (Macy's teen site)

Why? Marketing to teenagers brings up the subject of whether the site must comply with The Children's Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998 ("COPPA"), 15 U.S.C. 6501 et seq. The Children's Online Privacy Protection Rule, ("COPPA Rule"), 16 C.F.R. Part 312 (1999) (implementing COPPA) applies to web site operators who direct a web site or online service to children. Id. at § 312.3. A child is defined as "an individual under the age of 13." Id. at § 312.2. Hence the "13 or older" language in the privacy policies. So the site's say they're not targeting kids under 13, so then COPPA doesn't apply. Right? Quoting ESPN Game Day analyst Lee Corso, "Not so fast my friend."

Section 312.2 directs the Federal Trade Commission to look beyond the stated intent of the website operator.

In determining whether a commercial website or online service, or a portion thereof, is targeted to children, the Commission will consider its subject matter, visual or audio content, age of models, language or other characteristics of the website or online service, as well as whether advertising promoting or appearing on the website or online service is directed to children. The Commission will also consider competent and reliable empirical evidence regarding audience composition; evidence regarding the intended audience; and whether a site uses animated characters and/or child-oriented activities and incentives.
The FTC's website on COPPA located here. See the FTC's "How to Comply With The Children's Online Privacy Protection Rule."

Not complying with the Rule can cost a website operator money!