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Lawrence Lessig's Homepage
Lawrence Lessig's Blog

Lawrence Lessig is the Roy L. Furman Professor of Law and Leadership at Harvard Law School, and director of the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics at Harvard University. Prior to rejoining the Harvard faculty, Lessig was a professor at Stanford Law School, where he founded the school’s Center for Internet and Society, and at the University of Chicago. He clerked for Judge Richard Posner on the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals and Justice Antonin Scalia on the United States Supreme Court.

Lessig serves on the Board of Creative Commons, MapLight, Brave New Film Foundation, The American Academy, Berlin, AXA Research Fund and iCommons.org, and on the advisory board of the Sunlight Foundation. He is a Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the American Philosophical Association, and has received numerous awards, including the Free Software Foundation's Freedom Award, Fastcase 50 Award and being named one of Scientific American's Top 50 Visionaries.

Lessig holds a BA in economics and a BS in management from the University of Pennsylvania, an MA in philosophy from Cambridge, and a JD from Yale.


Projects & Tools

Creative Commons

Creative Commons helps you legally share your knowledge and creativity to build a more equitable, accessible, and innovative world. More

Internet Law Program (iLaw)

Taught by world-renowned experts in the field, the Berkman Klein Center’s Internet Law Program addresses the most pressing cyberlaw issues being debated by lawmakers in the U.S… More

Openlaw

[Berkman Project 2001-2002] Openlaw is an experiment in crafting legal argument in an open forum. More


Publications

May 31, 2018

Reclaiming a Commons (Draft 1.01)

Keynote address, The Berkman Center’s “Building a Digital Commons” May 20, 1999 Cambridge, MA More

May 31, 2018

'< iLaw > Rio, March 24, 2003

“The rise of an electronic medium that disregards geographical boundaries throws the law into disarray by creating entirely new phenomena that need to become the subject of clear… More

May 31, 2018

Newsbrain Proposal

May 31, 2018

'< iLaw >, Spectrum, Rio, Brazil, March 25, 2003

< iLaw >, Spectrum, Rio, Brazil, March 25, 2003, Lawrence Lessig More

Dec 30, 2006

Code: Version 2.0

Lessig's "Code and Other Laws of Cyberspace" was published in 1999. The book quickly began to define a certain vocabulary for thinking about the regulation of cyberspace. More… More

Jan 1, 2005

Net Dialogue Perspectives on International Net Governance

There is an urgent need for policymakers to prepare for the future and not just focus on problems of the past. To do so, they need to maintain better dialogue with the technology… More

Mar 25, 2004

Free Culture

How Big Media Uses Technology and the Law to Lock Down Culture and Control Creativity

In his two previous books, CODE and THE FUTURE OF IDEAS, Lessig concentrated on the destruction of much of the original promise of the Internet. Now, in FREE CULTURE, he widens… More

Dec 1, 2001

The Future of Ideas

The Fate of the Commons in a Connected World

The Future of Ideas: The Fate of the Commons in a Connected World by, Lawrence Lessig More

Dec 15, 1999

Zoning Speech on the Internet: A Legal and Technical Model

Speech, it is said, divides into three sorts — (1) speech that everyone has a right to (political speech, speech about public affairs); (2) speech that no one has a right to … More

Dec 15, 1999

Code and Other Laws of Cyberspace

Code and Other Laws of Cyberspace, by Lawrence Lessig More

Dec 3, 1999

The Law of the Horse: What Cyberlaw Might Teach

A few years ago, at a conference on the “Law of Cyberspace” held at the University of Chicago, Judge Frank Easterbrook told the assembled listeners, a room packed with “cyberlaw”… More

May 20, 1999

Open Code / Open Content / Open Law: Building a Digital Commons

Strategic Planning Session Paper

The Berkman Center proposed the formation of a legally independent nonprofit entity - a consortium of educational centers to foster the development of open software, open research… More

Mar 8, 1999

The Censorship of Television

Only an informed public can meaningfully participate in decisions about matters of public import. Television is one aspect of an informal public education. Thus...we should… More

May 11, 1998

What Things Regulate Speech: CDA 2.0 vs. Filtering (Draft 3.01)

In 1995, California passed a statute making it a crime to sell porn in vending machines. More precisely, the statute made it a crime to sell “harmful matter” (meaning harmful to… More


News

Mar 17, 2011

Radio Berkman 175: Lessig and Zittrain Take On...the Kill Switch

This week on Radio Berkman: Professors Lessig and Zittrain discuss turning off the Internet, the "Cybersecurity and Internet Freedom Act of 2011," and more, with Andrew McLaughlin… More

Dec 9, 2010

Radio Berkman 171: Wikileaks and the Information Wars

This week on Radio Berkman: Zittrain, Lessig, and the Berkman Center Fellows explore many facets surrounding the Wikileaks imbroglio, including the values of transparency and… More

Dec 2, 2010

Radio Berkman 170: Lessig and Zittrain take on... Corruption!

This week on Radio Berkman: With the November elections behind us here in the US Jonathan Zittrain and Lawrence Lessig take on the issue of money in politics, and investigate how… More

Oct 15, 2010

Radio Berkman 165: Zittrain & Lessig TAKE ON...Net Neutrality!

This week, Radio Berkman rolls out the second episode in a new, special series of conversations between Professor Lessig and Professor Zittrain, and the topic is especially thorny… More

Sep 9, 2010

Radio Berkman 162: Lessig & Zittrain Take On...Competition

This week, Radio Berkman returns from summer vacation with a big new episode in which Professors Lessig and Zittrain think through the Microsoft antitrust case and its… More

Jun 9, 2010

Law.gov workshops on June 17 and 18

Registration is open!

Next Thursday (6/17) and Friday (6/18) the Harvard Law School Library and the Berkman Center for Internet & Society will host two workshops focused on the Law.gov initiative, a… More

May 6, 2009

Reflections on ten years of Code

Jonathan Zittrain takes up the "arguments over cyberlibertarianism sparked by the release of [Lessig's] Code [and Other Laws of Cyberspace]" at Cato Unbound... More

Apr 21, 2009

On Remix and Born Digital

book reviews in Science Magazine

The Books et al. section in the current issue of Science features two Berkman Center-related pieces of interest to the wider community. Yochai Benkler considers Lawrence Lessig's… More

Dec 12, 2008

Cambridge bound!

Lawrence Lessig receives two Harvard appointments

Tremendous news: former Berkman Center faculty director Lawrence Lessig is returning to Harvard as a professor of law and faculty director of Harvard's Edmond J. Safra Foundation… More

Oct 22, 2008

Piracy on the Choppy Copyright (C)s

The Digital Natives project has been doing a lot of thinking about digital piracy and creativity lately... More

Aug 29, 2008

New opportunities with Berkman Center friends

The UC Berkeley School of Law is seeking a clinical professor to serve as the director of the Samuelson Law, Technology and Public Policy Clinic. And Stanford Law School has… More


Courses

Digital Platforms - Spring 2014

The Internet operates in layers, and so does much of the technology that hooks up to it: PCs, mobile phones, tablets. Nearly two decades ago those platforms were conceptually… More

The Microsoft Case - Fall 1998

Professors Lessig and Zittrain will teach a research seminar on the Microsoft case. The seminar will meet at least once a week, beginning the week of 9/21. It will review the… More

The Law of Cyberspace: Social Protocols - Fall 1998

The class will consider the interaction between policy and technology, or more specifically, between law and various architectures of cyberspace. We will cover topics including… More

The High Tech Entrepreneur - Winter 1998

The High Tech Entrepreneur - Winter 1998 More

The Law of Cyberspace - Winter 1997

This seminar will explore issues related to the regulation of cyberspace. It is not a course in computer law, or copyright, or intellectual property. It is instead an effort to… More

The Law of Cyberspace - Winter 1997

This seminar will explore issues related to the regulation of cyberspace. More


Events

Apr 16, 2018 @ 4:00 PM

Force of Nature

Celebrating 20 Years of the Laws of Cyberspace

Join us as we celebrate 20 years of the Laws of Cyberspace and the ways in which it laid the groundwork for our Center's field of study. More

Nov 21, 2011 @ 6:00 PM

Intellectual Property Strategy

John Palfrey, Berkman Center Faculty Co-Director and Vice Dean for Library and Information Resources at Harvard Law School + Special Guests

Entrepreneurs, corporate managers and nonprofit administrators should look at intellectual property as a key strategic asset. In his new book, “Intellectual Property Strategy” … More

Nov 1, 2011 @ 5:00 PM

Republic, Lost: How Money Corrupts Congress--and a Plan to Stop It

A conversation between Lawrence Lessig and David Gergen

Professor David Gergen, Director of the Harvard Kennedy School’s Center for Public Leadership converses with Professor Lawrence Lessig about his new book, "Republic, Lost: How… More

Jun 17, 2010 @ 10:00 AM

Law.gov: Massachusetts

Do we have access to all primary legal materials in Massachusetts? What are the best practices for making information accessible? Join a Law.gov workshop focused on outlining the… More

Feb 25, 2010 @ 6:00 PM

Wireside Chat with Lawrence Lessig: Fair Use, Politics, and Online Video

Lawrence Lessig, the foundational voice of the free culture movement, will deliver a talk on fair use and politics from Harvard Law School in Cambridge, Massachusetts. More

Dec 12, 2008 @ 6:30 PM

The Commons: Celebrating accomplishments, discerning futures

Jamie Boyle, Lawrence Lessig, Joi Ito, Molly S. Van Houweling, and Jonathan Zittrain

Creative Commons and the Berkman Center for Internet & Society present "The Commons: Celebrating accomplishments, discerning futures" tonight. More

Apr 4, 2008 @ 6:00 PM

Building the Change Congress Movement

Lawrence Lessig

Lawrence Lessig returned to Cambridge to speak about Change Congress, a project to build support for reforming how the United States government functions. More

Event Series

iLaw Peru 2006

Internet Law Program in Lima, Peru on June 27-28, 2006. More

Oct 1, 2000 @ 9:57 PM

The Future of Intellectual Property on the Internet: A Debate

Lawrence Lessig and Jack Valenti

The Berkman Center presented a debate between Valenti and Lessig on the future of intellectual property online. More

Nov 8, 1999 @ 3:59 AM

Technology and Culture Book Panel

Technology and Culture Book Panel More