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Cyberlaw and the Global Economy - Fall 2004

Course Description:

The Internet and the practice of law are both increasingly global in nature. Legal doctrine of relevance to lawyers representing clients with global businesses and a presence on the Internet continues to develop rapidly. For instance, changes in the law of intellectual property related to the Internet - whether the IP relates to code, data, music or other content - have broad and complex application for businesses selling into a multi-jurisdictional world. A special series of laws, regulations and policies related to commercial transactions, large and small, involving new technologies continues to evolve.

This seminar will focus on recent developments in cyberlaw with impact on commercial and cross-border transactions. The course is not exclusively an international or comparative law class, but rather looks at problems of Internet law within a global framework. This global framework may mean that legal issues are local, state, national, multi-national or truly international in scope. Special emphasis will be placed on the impact of globalization, both in the law generally and the Internet, on the practice of cyberlaw. The course will also involve aspects of comparative law, primarily between the US and the European Union and the US and certain developing countries. The goals of this course include exposing students to some of the core issues involved in a technology practice during an era of dramatic globalization; to delve more deeply in a discussion format into the basic cyberlaw issues addressed in the Professor Jonathan Zittrain's Internet & Society class; to encourage critical thinking about how to harmonize competing policies and laws in a global marketplace; and to examine how these laws and policies may be extended so as to assist developing countries seeking entry into the global economy.