From the Rat to the Mouse: How Secondary Picketing Laws May Apply in the Computer Age

Source: Thomas Moyher, Robert T. Szyba, Hofstra Labor & Employment Law Journal, Volume 26, No. 1, Fall 2008

This Note discusses the development of secondary activity by labor unions under the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”), and how, based on the past and current state of the law, courts and the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) may handle future disputes arising from use of the Internet in these secondary activities. By analyzing the laws regarding handbilling and picketing, and their extension to banners, inflatable rats, and street theatre, this Note discusses the extension of these laws to websites and e-mail. This Note recognizes that there is a necessity for workable doctrines that will capture the intended policies of the NLRA and produce logical results, and that will be applicable to future cases involving use of cyberspace in new and innovative ways in the secondary picketing context.

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