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Tuesday, Feb 27, 2024
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SDBJ Insider

Career-Defining Case

Last Friday marked the beginning of claims submission  process in the “In re Payment Card Interchange Fee and Merchant Discount Antitrust Litigation”  class action lawsuit filed in 2005 by plaintiffs alleging Visa, MasterCard and their member banks worked together to set the price of the interchange fee for merchants.

In March, the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit  unanimously upheld the district court’s order giving final approval to the  $5.54  billion  settlement – the largest private antitrust  class-action  settlement  in U.S. history.

“It’s been a long time coming, it’s had a lot of twists and turns and we’re finally now at this great moment now where class members will be able to file a claim,” said Alexandra Bernay of San Diego-based Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP, co-counsel on the litigation.

Class member merchants  nationwide  who accepted Visa and/or MasterCard payment cards during the 15-year class period have until May 31, 2024 to file a claim.

The case is the second career-defining case for the firm, which was sole lead counsel on “In re Enron Corp.” – the largest securities fraud class action recovery in history.

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Thanks to a partnership between the Associated Press and San Diego-based Sony Electronics, the threat of manipulated photographs disseminating misinformation may soon be yesterday’s news.

Sony announced late last month it had completed a second round of testing for its in-camera authenticity technology which creates a digital signature that allows for the creation of a “birth certificate” for images, validating the origin of photographic content.
The signature is created on each image at the moment a picture is taken and can be used to detect if images have been manipulated – a growing concern among news organizations since the swift evolution of generative AI.
Sony Electronics President and COO Neal Manowitz said the digital signature technology has shown “valuable results” and the company is pushing toward a “wider release” following its limited release as a firmware update in three models of its Alpha series cameras in the spring of 2024.

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San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance Lead Conservation Scientist Ekwoge Abwe was awarded the Prince William Award for Conservation in Africa last week at the 11th annual Tusk Conservation Awards held at the Savoy in London.

Abwe, who is from Cameroon, was honored for his lifetime of achievements leading SDZWA’s African Forest Program and serving as president of the Cameroon Biodiversity Association.

For 20 years, Abwe has worked with SDZWA researching the behaviors of great apes. He was the first to witness endangered Nigeria-Cameroon chimpanzees using stone and wooden hammers to crack open tree nuts in Cameroon. Abwe also led a campaign against logging in Cameroon’s Ebo Wildlife Reserve.

Abwe’s Prince William Award comes 40 years after another award that connected the royal family to the San Diego Zoo. In 1983, SDZWA awarded a Conservation Medal to His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburg in a ceremony at the zoo that was also attended by Queen Elizabeth.

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