Friday, July 22, 2011

Technology, Law, and the Workplace: Week in Review (The VPP Edition)

Last week, Apple announced that it would begin offering volume purchasing for iOS apps. A week later, the App Store Volume Purchase Program is now open for enrollment. The Volume Purchase Program (VPP) allows businesses to make bulk purchases of apps, although Apple currently does not offer discounts for buying in bulk (insert joke about how expensive Apple products are here).  However, the VPP allows businesses to purchase, customize, and distribute iOS apps throughout the enterprise.

So what does this development mean for employers? On the one hand, the VPP gives employers more control over the devices owned and distributed by the business. Although it always been possible for employers to control the installation of applications on iOS devices owned by the enterprise, before the VPP, this was a very cumbersome, device-by-device process. Going forward, centralized management of iOS apps appears to be a more feasible option for employers.

However, as with so many technological advances, control is often illusory. Employers should know that the control and distribution of iOS applications is only a small part of the control and maintenance of iOS devices. Harassment, pornography, and unlawful activity do not require special apps—and employers that are considering getting in the business of owning, distributing, and maintaining iOS devices should do so with their eyes wide open.

Technology in the Workplace
Technology and the Law More Generally
  • "Internet Communications" Alone Insufficient To Invoke Florida Long-Arm Statute Against Lindsay Lohan In Trade Secrets Misappropriation Suit (Trading Secrets)
  • US Supreme Court Refuses to Stay Videotaped Execution, Now Set for Tonight (ABA Journal Blog)
  • Online Exhortation to Shoot Obama Was Protected Speech, 9th Circuit Rules (ABA Journal Blog)
  • 16 Arrested as F.B.I. Hits the Hacking Group Anonymous (NY Times)
  • Transparent Government, via Webcams in India (NY Times)
Technology in the News
  • Apple Launches B2B Store For Volume App Store Purchases (TUAW)
  • The Ultimate Nerd Apparel: iCufflinks (Gadgetwise)
  • U.S. to Close 800 Computer Data Centers (NY Times)
  • Study: Average corporate network hacked 3+ times a year (MSP Business Journal)
  • Privacy Isn’t Dead. Just Ask Google+ (Bits)
  • Seeing Promise and Peril in Digital Health Records (NY Times)

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