Spring course listings

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Charlie Nesson

Freedom: Seminar

Spring term, Block H M 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM 2 classroom credits LAW-93965A Spring

Led by Charles and Fern Nesson. This seminar will ask the ultimately unanswerable questions about the nature of freedom and how we handle it. We will read widely in philosophy, science, literature, and law. Fern and I would like to open up a discussion with prospective students in which we plan our detailed curriculum together. We propose to do this by seeding a wiki with our starting suggestions. Students will be asked to write a paper in conjunction with the seminar.

Terry Fisher

Patent Law

4 classroom credits LAW-44250A Spring

This course will explore patent law in depth. Approximately two thirds of the class time and readings will be devoted to the American patent system; the remainder will be devoted to the major relevant multilateral treaties and to the patent systems of other countries. Substantial attention will be paid to the efforts by economists to justify, reform, or abolish patent law and to the impact of patent law on developing nations. Students will be expected to participate via email in a discussion of the issues raised by the course. Materials will consist of Robert Merges and John Duffy, Patent Law and Policy (3rd ed. 2002) and a set of supplementary readings available through the course homepage.

Students may not take both this course and the Patents course taught by Professor Arti last year. Students may take this course and the "Introduction to Patents, Copyrights, and Similar Exclusive Rights Regimes taught by Professor Benkler this Fall but with one fewer credit for the second course taken because of the overlap.

Professor John Palfrey and Dr. David Weinberger

Web Difference? Digital Media, Entertainment, and the Law

Spring term, Block E M,T 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM

3 classroom credits LAW-48372A Spring 2, 3, or 4 optional clinical credits LAW-48372C Fall or Spring, or 2 Winter

This course will examine the claim of Internet exceptionalism and the implications of this claim in the context of the law and society. Is the Web something substantially new that is changing the fundamentals of who we are and how we're together? Or is it just the next in the communication media humans have invented? What are the problems to which these changes give rise? Which of these problems are ones that we'd like to address through reforms in the law, technology environment, markets, social norms, or other yet-to-be-discovered modes of influence? This course will cover the legal and policy issues to which changes in the news media and entertainment businesses, wrought by the web, give rise. Key doctrinal areas of inquiry include intellectual property, the First Amendment, defamation, and privacy. Students should be prepared to experiment with new technologies, including a course weblog, and to perform some coursework collaboratively. Course requirements include group coursework and a final paper, but no examination.

This course is particularly appropriate as an offering for those students who intend to take, or have taken, the Clinical Program in Cyberlaw at the Berkman Center.

Students who wish to enroll in the class with a clinical component must enroll through clinical registration. Please refer to the Office of Clinical and Pro Bono Programs website at http://www.law.harvard.edu/academics/clinical for clinical course registration dates, drop/add deadlines, and other clinical registration information.

Professors William Fisher and Yochai Benkler

Motivation: Seminar Spring term, Block I

T 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM

2 classroom credits LAW-97955A Spring

What prompts people to do what they do? A rapidly growing literature in several disciplines -- psychology, sociology, neuroscience, and economics -- casts new light on this age-old question. We will read deeply in that literature and then consider its implications for the design of legal, political, and economic institutions. Among those institutions will be: intellectual property; representative or participatory democracy; criminal law; contract and employment law; the organization of private firms; and decentralized, collaborative systems for producing software.

Approximately two thirds of the classes will consist of seminar-style discussions; approximately one third will consist of presentations by outside speakers.

The course is open to graduate students in all schools and departments within the university. Participants will be expected both to contribute to the discussion insights drawn from their specialties and to grapple seriously with questions and arguments drawn from disciplines far outside their zones of expertise. Each participant must prepare a substantial research paper.

2 classroom credits; 1 paper credit. Admission by permission of the instructors. (Applications for admission should be sent to curley@law.harvard.edu.) Enrollment limited to 20.

Phil Malone

Antitrust, Technology, and Innovation: Seminar

Spring term, Block J W 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM

2 classroom credits LAW-90271A Spring

Many of the most exciting and challenging recent developments in antitrust law have arisen in cases involving innovative technology industries such as the Internet, computer software and hardware, and other information technologies. This seminar will take a detailed and critical look at some of the unique challenges to existing antitrust doctrine and enforcement efforts raised by these industries. We will begin by exploring the relationships between competition, market structure and innovation, including the application of Schumpeterian models and subsequent refinements and critiques, and alternative models such as peer-production and user-generated innovation. We will then examine recent economic research and theory regarding the operation and characteristics of dynamic, innovation-driven markets, including network effects, standardization, platform and systems competition, technical compatibility and interoperability, and ecosystem/keystone theory. The seminar will consider difficult issues of antitrust market definition, particularly in the context of computer technology and pharmaceuticals, including technology and innovation markets and the challenge of identifying breaks in a continuum of functionality of software products. We will devote substantial attention to ongoing developments in the antitrust treatment of product innovation and design decisions such as predatory design, bundling, software integration, and technological tying, including a comparison of the D.C. Circuit's two Microsoft decisions and the European Commission, European Court of First Instance, and Korean Fair Trade Commission Microsoft cases regarding software tying. We also will look at recent evolution of the definitions of exclusionary conduct in technology markets, including the Supreme Court's Trinko decision, and will specifically examine duties to deal, duties to disclose and the withholding of technical information. A substantial portion of the seminar will be devoted to analyzing some of the most challenging issues presented by the intersection of antitrust and intellectual property law in technology markets, including market power following the Supreme Court's decision in Independent Ink; general principles of limits on IP licensing; comparative US and European treatment of unilateral refusals to license intellectual property; patent thickets, cross-licenses, pools, reverse payments and other agreements to settle patent litigation; and the evolving antitrust implications of certain conduct in the context of industry standard-setting organizations.

Throughout the course, we will evaluate the similarities and differences between US and EU law in their respective doctrinal approaches to and practical treatment of various key seminar topics. Readings will be drawn from a wide variety of leading US and European court cases, government guidelines, the recent FTC/DOJ Antitrust and IP Report, recent economic and legal academic literature, enforcement Agency hearings and speeches, and actual litigation and appellate materials from relevant cases. An overview course or other prior seminar in antitrust law, or other substantial familiarity with basic antitrust principles, is a prerequisite.