Skip to main content

Recent Blog Posts from Our Members

Unlevel Playing Field: The Hypocrisy of the NCAA’s Gender Equity Argument in Johnson

By Michael Bennett

It is often said that defense wins championships. However, the NCAA’s defense invoking gender equity as a concern for conferring employee status to student athletes won’t be winning championships any time soon. The NCAA is currently facing a multi-faceted challenge to their amateurism model. Specifically, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has placed the NCAA under investigation and several student-athletes have filed suit under the Fair Labor Standards Act, claiming that they should be paid a minimum wage by their colleges and universities for the work they do as student-athletes. The trial court denied the NCAA’s motion to dismiss, leading to this interlocutory appeal from the NCAA. Read Michael’s full post here.

Gonzalez v. Google: The Future of “The Twenty-Six Words That Created the Internet”*

By Lillian “Lily” Rucker

In November 2015, Nohemi Gonzalez, a twenty-three-year-old college student studying abroad in Paris, was among the 130 killed in a coordinated series of ISIS terrorist attacks. Ms. Gonzalez’s father subsequently brought an action against YouTube, a subsidiary of Google, for their “uniquely essential role” in the promotion, expansion, and success of ISIS by algorithmically recommending their videos to certain YouTube users. In doing so, Gonzalez aimed to pierce Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act of 1996, the legal shield that, since its enactment, lower courts interpreting the statute have, with limited exceptions, granted internet platforms sweeping immunity. Read Lily’s full post here.

Updates from the Vanderbilt Journal of Entertainment and Technology Law

JETLaw in the News: The Fault in Our Stars Reaches the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia 

Ramon Ryan’s paper, The Fault in Our Stars: Challenging the FCC’s Treatment of Commercial Satellites as Categorically Excluded from Review under the National Environmental Policy Act, in the Vanderbilt Journal of Entertainment and Technology Law continues to push the frontiers of space law. Ryan’s paper raises several issues with the Federal Communication Commission’s (FCC’s) categorical exclusion of commercial satellites from environmental review.

In a recent filing in the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, the communications company Viasat, which operates a competing satellite to SpaceX’s Starlink satellite, raises an argument from Ryan’s paper in its lawsuit against the FCC. Ryan recently spoke with Scientific American about this recent development of his paper. The Scientific American feature can be found here.

Ryan is a recent graduate of Vanderbilt Law School and a former Editor in Chief of JETLaw. A copy of Ryan’s paper can be downloaded here. The paper has been reported on by Scientific AmericanBusiness Insider, and Futurism. The paper also prompted legislation aimed at creating National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) review for satellite launches. In January 2020, US Senators Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) and Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) sent a letter to the US Government Accountability Office requesting review of the FCC’s longstanding policy of excluding commercial-satellite projects from environmental review.

Statement in Solidarity with the AAPI Community

Since March 2020, there have been almost 4,000 attacks on Asian Americans, with many incidents specifically targeting Asian American women and elders. While hate crimes against the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community are unfortunately not a new phenomenon, the rate at which they occur has greatly increased due to the ignorant association of AAPI-identifying individuals with the coronavirus outbreak last year. Most recently, a man in Georgia was charged with killing eight people, including six Asian American women, in a string of massage parlor shootings. While there are many narratives suggesting that these murders were not racially motivated, we know better than to ignore the intersection of gender, race, ethnicity, and socio-economic status in the context of atrocities committed to members of marginalized communities.

On behalf of the Journal of Entertainment and Technology Law, we stand against all forms of white supremacy, bigotry, and violence. We stand with members of the AAPI community as they grieve these tragedies and continue to experience the effects of discrimination. As an organization, it is our responsibility to be actively anti-racist, to loudly speak up in the face of injustice, and to educate ourselves on how best to serve as allies to those affected by or in fear of racially-motivated violence and hate crimes.

Our hearts go out to the families and loved ones of the victims of the Atlanta shootings: Delaina Ashley Yaun Gonzalez, Xiaojie Tan, Daoyou Feng, Paul Andre Michaels, Hyun Jeong Park Grant, Soon Chung Park, Sun-Cha Kim, Yong-Ae Yue, and Elcias R Hernandez-Ortiz.