Photo of Blaine C. Kimrey

Blaine C. Kimrey is a Shareholder at Vedder Price, Chair of the Media & Entertainment Litigation practice group, and a member of the Privacy, CyberSecurity, & Media practice group.  A former journalist at two daily newspapers (the Austin American-Statesman and the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette), Mr. Kimrey is a trial lawyer who has dedicated more than 20 years to working for and defending media entities. Mr. Kimrey’s practice, however, extends well beyond media defense, focusing on a broad range of direct and class action litigation involving topics as diverse as privacy, consumer deception, intellectual property, entertainment, insurance, banking, real estate, civil rights, telecommunications, and mass catastrophes and torts.  Among other accolades, Mr. Kimrey is Chambers USA Band 2 rated for Media & Entertainment Litigation in the state of Illinois, is listed in Best Lawyers in America for Intellectual Property Litigation, and is AV-rated by Martindale-Hubbell.

Phone and gavelThe first half of 2021 saw one of the most significant TCPA rulings in many years as Facebook v. Duguid, 141 S. Ct. 1163 (2021), appeared to settle the long-debated question of what constitutes an automatic telephone dialing system (“ATDS”).  But while the Supreme Court’s April ruling was extremely positive for the TCPA defense bar, it by no means brought an end to TCPA claims.  Significant cases have continued to yield decisions, including cases that have sought to interpret Facebook.  And the state of Florida stepped into the abyss in passing a “mini-TCPA” statute that went into effect earlier this month that regulates telemarketing at the state level, with a much broader definition of the relevant technology.  Thus, the TCPA (and related statute) litigation landscape, while upended to some degree, remains unsettled, and we’ll continue to provide our insights.  We summarize here developments since our last update, listed by issue category in alphabetical order.
Continue Reading TCPA Turnstile: TCPA cases in a post-Facebook world (TCPA Case Update Vol. 15)

The European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”) is well known as the toughest privacy and security law in the world, as it has a wide reach and imposes heavy fines against those who violate its privacy and security standards (which are quite broad). The impact of the GDPR has already been felt in the United States since it went into effect in 2018, and now U.S. lawmakers in numerous states are moving to enact similar legislations. The California Consumer Protection Act (“CCPA”) was the first instance of the GDPR’s impact in the United States, as California put in place a statute and regulations that mirrored the GDPR in several respects. Now Virginia has set in motion what could be a year-long string of states enacting similar legislation. In particular, Washington and New York have proposed legislation following the framework of the CCPA. This article will compare the CCPA to the newly enacted and proposed privacy laws in the United States.
Continue Reading GDPR in the USA? New State Legislation Is Making This Closer to Reality

Phone and gavelOne of the few things that hasn’t changed significantly since our last TCPA update is, well, the TCPA. We have a new year, a new President and multiple new COVID vaccines.  And after the December oral argument in Facebook v. Duguid before the Supreme Court, 2021 could be the year when we receive clarity on the critical TCPA question of what constitutes an automatic telephone dialing system (“ATDS”).  Indeed, the argument seemed positive for the TCPA defense bar, with Justices Alito and Thomas chafing at the anachronistic nature of the statute and Justices Sotomayor and Gorsuch expressing concerns about the idea that every cellphone user could be subject to civil liability.  But for now, the TCPA litigation landscape remains the same bizarre, often inconsistent quagmire that it always has been.  We’ll continue to be your guide through the morass, and we summarize here developments since our last update, listed by issue category in alphabetical order.
Continue Reading TCPA Turnstile: New Year, Same TCPA – For Now (TCPA Case Update Vol. 14)

Phone and gavelMany had hoped that the summer of 2020 might bring the end of the TCPA as we know it, by way of the Supreme Court’s decision in Barr v. American Association of Political Consultants.  Of course, that’s not how things played out. The government-backed debt exception is dead, but the rest of the TCPA is still very much alive.  And while the pace of litigation has slowed because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, TCPA decisions continue to roll in and there have been new developments before the FCC.  We reviewed the TCPA cases published and other developments since our last update and compiled the most noteworthy items, listed below by issue category in alphabetical order.
Continue Reading TCPA Turnstile: No summer vacation for the TCPA defense bar (TCPA Case Update Vol. 13)

Phone and gavelUndoubtedly, the biggest TCPA development in the last month was the recent Supreme Court oral argument in Barr v. American Association of Political Consultants Inc., Case No. 19-631, which has the potential to upend TCPA jurisprudence as we know it.  While we wait for a Supreme Court decision, the oral argument made a few things clear:

Continue Reading TCPA Turnstile: As we wait for a ruling in Barr, new case law abounds (TCPA Case Update Vol. 12)

“Should we do a Zoom?” It has taken little more than a month for the Zoom video conference platform to take its place among the likes of Google, Kleenex and Xerox as brand names synonymous with the product or service being offered. But with that name recognition comes scrutiny, and Zoom is getting plenty. The privacy and security issues associated with Zoom have been well-documented. As a result, Zoom is now facing class action lawsuits from both shareholders and users. And the use of Zoom (and other platforms) can raise ethics issues for lawyers.

Continue Reading Zooming into New Privacy Issues

Phone and gavelWe’re a quarter of the way through 2020 — even if March may have seemed liked several years unto itself — and it is shaping up to be another big year for TCPA litigation.  We’ve gone through the dozens of TCPA decisions published this year and identified the five most notable cases and storylines that we will be following closely for the rest of 2020.

Continue Reading Five Key TCPA cases to Know as We Enter the Second Quarter of 2020 (TCPA Case Update Vol. 11)

Smart companies have been worried about data security for years—no one wants to be in the headlines as the next big company to have a breach, the next corporation to face a class action lawsuit or the next business facing federal or state regulatory scrutiny.  It’s only heightened in recent years as companies faced new regulations imposed by the GDPR and the CCPA.  Well, things are not getting any better in 2020—now an increasing number of municipalities are getting in on the act.

San Francisco was the first city to have this awakening in 2017. In response to the Equifax data breach on September 7, 2017, San Francisco filed claims against Equifax under California’s Unfair Competition Law (UCL).  A few months later, Los Angeles brought a similar lawsuit against Uber claiming that the company paid hackers to delete stolen data and failed to notify consumers of the breach in violation of the UCL.  But most state statutes do not give cities standing to bring lawsuits.

Continue Reading Parking Tickets, Jaywalking, and Cybersecurity Breaches at Multinational Companies: City ordinances are coming off the streets and into the server room

Phone and gavelPerhaps not surprisingly, there was no vacation this summer for TCPA litigation.  We already addressed the 11th Circuit’s big decision on Article III standing in Salcedo.  But we’ve also combed through the 150+ TCPA-related decisions over the summer to keep you apprised of the latest developments in this area of the law.  We’ve compiled the most noteworthy decisions since our last report, and they’re listed below by issue category in alphabetical order.

Continue Reading TCPA Turnstile: Case Update Vol. 10

For the vast majority of Americans, receiving a single unsolicited text message is a mere annoyance that does not warrant a federal lawsuit.  But spurred by the language of the TCPA and a series of judicial decisions nationwide, a cottage industry has sprung up around filing putative class action lawsuits centered around this sort of alleged “harm.”  Last week, the 11th Circuit dealt a significant blow to such cases, finding that receipt of a single unsolicited text message in violation of the TCPA is not sufficient to establish standing.

Continue Reading Common Sense Reigns in 11th Circuit: A Brief Annoyance Does Not Create Standing