Thursday, February 22, 2024

Generative AI Developments

Earlier this month, Minneapolis hosted and Lathrop GPM sponsored the 2024 Midwest Legal Coneference on Data Privacy and Cybersecurity. The conference covered a wide range of topics including generative AI developments, emerging state privacy laws, and strategies to mitigate cybersecurity risks. The generative AI sessions were particularly popular and had attendees buzzing with excitement (and admittedly, some trepidation) throughout conference. Conversations about the quickly developing tool spilled out into the hallways during session breaks and continued well into the evening—lawyers are an exciting bunch, aren’t they…

Wednesday, February 14, 2024

The Economic Impact of a Perennial Winner

On Sunday, February 11th, all of Kansas City celebrated as the Kansas City Chiefs found victory in Super Bowl 58.

As a lifelong Chiefs fan, the last few years have been beyond anything I ever could have imagined. When I was growing up, the Chiefs did not compete for championships. The team had a seemingly never-ending conveyor belt of quarterbacks, none of whom could lead the Chiefs far into the playoffs.

Wednesday, January 31, 2024

Malcolm Harris, Palo Alto: A History of California, Capitalism, and the World (Little, Brown and Company, 2023)

Malcolm Harris lured me into this book, a history of the area now encompassing Silicon Valley, with his very first sentences: “Palo Alto is nice. The weather is temperate; the people educated, rich, healthy, innovative.” Check—this matches my initial impressions, formed when I arrived in 1979 to attend law school on the campus of the university Leland Stanford formed in 1891 in memory of his son, a victim of typhoid at the age of 15.

One detail immediately stood out for me. It was difficult for me, a middle-class son of the Midwest, to come to terms with the fact that the undergraduate parking lot was filled with cars newer and more expensive than those I encountered on a daily basis in the suburban Twin Cities neighborhood of my youth. Nonetheless, I came to see Palo Alto as a wonderful place to spend three years, even if throughout that period I had a nagging feeling that there was something not quite “real,” for lack of a better term, about the place. It turns out this is a feeling I share with Harris, who grew up there. “There were signs,” he writes, “that, if Palo Alto was normal, it was too normal, weirdly normal.” Again, right on target.

Thursday, January 18, 2024

Is Your Business Ready for 2024 and the New Data Privacy Laws?

I have the perfect tool to get you started.

Our popular 2024 Legal Guide to Privacy and Data Security is now available. This guide is a collaborative effort between Lathrop GPM and the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED). You can find a digital version here. You can also get an old school paper version by contacting me here.

The guide is written for non-lawyers and offers insight into a variety of privacy and data security related laws, the impact of such laws on businesses, and best practices to mitigate risks.

Thursday, January 11, 2024

A Buzz Around Bitcoin ETFs

There has been a lot of attention surrounding cryptocurrencies going back to Bitcoin’s exponential rise in price between 2010 and 2021. Subsequently in 2022, cryptocurrencies received even more attention when FTX collapsed and the then Chief Executive was arrested for stealing from FTX customers. More recently, cryptocurrencies generated headlines when cryptocurrency fund manager Grayscale won a lawsuit against the Securities and Exchange Commission in favor of Grayscale for its’ proposed Bitcoin backed spot exchange-traded fund (a “spot Bitcoin ETF”). Additionally, twelve other aspiring enterprises have applied for and await a ruling from the SEC. Now, if you are like me, you are probably wondering: what is a spot Bitcoin ETF?, why is the SEC involved if Bitcoin is not considered a regulated security?, and why is this important to the investment sector?

Friday, January 5, 2024

Happy National Trivia Day 2024!

Happy New Year, entrepreneurs! As we enter 2024, with Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, New Years, and all the other minor holidays behind us, we can celebrate the start of 2024 with National Trivia Day, which was yesterday! To commemorate this most auspicious occasion (and a little fun as we get back into the grind of working after so many holidays), here’s a quick Trivia Quiz with, of course, an entrepreneurial spin – enjoy, and good luck! (Answers follow the quiz)

Friday, December 15, 2023

Holiday Receiving and Giving

The end of the year is always a hectic time for everyone, with many holidays around the world. It is also usually a big time for retail businesses.

This year, retailers have settled the long debate on when the holiday season begins—the earlier the better, as reflected in the surge in Black Friday deals. According to the traditional explanation for Thanksgiving-linked Black Friday sales, retailers—after an entire year of operating at a loss (“in the red”)—supposedly begin to earn a profit (“move into the black”) on the day after Thanksgiving, mainly because shoppers begin to spend heavily on discounted merchandise.