Antitrust, UCL and Privacy

Competition: Fall 2015, Vol 24, No. 2

MOBILE APPS: REDEFINING THE VIRTUAL CALIFORNIA ECONOMY AND THE LAWS THAT GOVERN IT

By Alexandra McDonald, Jason McDonell, and Caroline Mitchell1

I. INTRODUCTION.

As the virtual world integrates seamlessly into our everyday lives, mobile applications ("apps") have become a hub of both social and commercial activity. As a result, they have drawn increasing attention from courts and regulators. In California’s Silicon Valley driven economy, savvy businesses closely monitor their apps portfolios, making sure they have the legal protections necessary to optimize their value, while also guarding against the legal and regulatory pitfalls that could plunge them into high profile and costly disputes. This article reviews the rapid rise of apps in the economy and the legal issues that companies using apps to drive their business need to manage.

II. THE NEW FACE OF CONSUMERISM.

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