Monday, May 23, 2011

Morning Brief: UK Prime Minister says current privacy laws need to "catch up": VYou gets $3M in new funding

The Guardian this morning reports that UK Prime Minister David Cameron has suggested that UK privacy laws are putting the media at a disadvantage in comparison to social media as current laws prohibit the naming of celebrities involved in news events.

At the center of the discussion is the case of British footballer who is alleged to have had an affair with the model Imogen Thomas, with the name of the player widely known through discussions on social media, but not named by mainstream UK media out of fear of prosecution. The Sunday Herald, which is published in Scotland, is not bound by the privacy injunction and so was free to print the picture of the footballer (which will go unnamed here simply because of disinterest).

"It is rather unsustainable, this situation, where newspapers can't print something that everyone else is clearly talking about," Cameron said on UK television this weekend.

VYou snagged $3 million in funding from RRE Ventures and Highland Capital Partners and others, the Washington Post reported. The company has several big media partners such as Hearst Newspapers and Simon and Schuster.

VYou allows users to "converse" via video clips. The investment is consistent with the approach currently being taken by VCs to fund multiple tech investments in hopes of striking it big with the next Facebook.