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European E-commerce Law - Case Study Example

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Summary
Alfred, a resident of England, has set up a small business selling computer software primarily for small businesses, which he writes himself. The business was established in 2006 and is called Alfsoft Ltd. Alfred wishes to sell software over the Internet. Alfred has successfully registered Alfsoft as a UK trade mark for computer software, and registers the domain name Alfsoft.com.
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European E-commerce Law
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Download file to see previous pages The software costs 50, with a postage and packing charge of 5 if sent via DVD.
Brian lives in another EU country (not the UK). He goes to Alfred's website with the intention of downloading a copy of Alfred's latest computer program for use in his own small business. He clicks on a "Download Now" button, inputs his address and credit card details, and is presented with Alfred's contract terms as a 'Click Wrap' agreement. Brian scrolls down through the agreement without reading it, clicks an 'I accept' button at the bottom of the screen, and downloads the software. He then begins using it.
assy lives in the UK. She goes to Alfred's website with the intention of buying a copy of Alfred's latest computer program on DVD, for her own personal use. She clicks on an "Order Now" button, inputs her address and credit card details, clicks a button that says 'Submit', and places her order. When the software arrives on DVD five days later, Cassy puts the DVD into her computer and is presented with Alfred's contract terms as a 'Click Wrap' agreement. Cassy scrolls down through the agreement and notices the term "To the extent allowed by law, Alfsoft Ltd is not liable for the results of using this software". ...
Cassy suffers an economic loss of 100, which is the cost of taking her computer to a local servicer to get the virus removed and Alfred's software uninstalled. Both Brian and Cassy contact Alfred, demanding to be compensated for the losses they have incurred.
eanwhile, a few weeks after registering the domain name Alfsoft.com, Alfred receives a 'cease & desist' letter from lawyers representing a US software company, Alpha-Software LLC, who own the trade mark Alphasoft and registered the domain name Alphasoft.com in 2001. The letter alleges that Alfsoft.com is confusingly similar to Alphasoft.com and demands that Alfred transfer Alfsoft.com to Alpha-Software, otherwise they will take action to enforce a transfer of the domain name under the UDRP. Alfred approaches you for legal advice.
Introduction
Contracts have become ubiquitous in people's everyday lives. Unconsciously, they enter into different types of contractual agreements - when traveling by bus or rail, when purchasing goods and accepting services and in carrying duties regulated by contracts of employment. Contracts are so common and widespread that the ordinary man or woman in the street does not realise the legal intricacies and involvedness of a transaction they have entered into. As legal experts are aware, these transactions are not as lawfully simple as their everyday nature suggests. They require evidence of a consensus in item, or a meeting of the minds, achieved by a clear and unambiguous offer and an unqualified acceptance of that offer. Fortunately, society has developed special rules to allow people to determine what the exact terms of the contract are, when it was formed and where it is governed.
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