Computers and the Law
- Jerome J Roberts - 312/346-4585
- MacChesney Hall - McCormick - Mo 4:00PM - 5:50PM
- The goal of the seminar is to prepare students to identify and address legal issues pertaining to the creation, ownership, distribution, procurement and utilization of computer resources as well as the bigger societal issues arising from the changes created by the rapid advancement and deployment of computer technology. There is absolutely no need for students to have any background in computer technology. The course is designed to accommodate students who do not have a background in computer technology while allowing those with such backgrounds to build upon their experiences. The course includes an overview of the fundamental principles upon which the technology is based, the history of the development and implementation of the technology and the laws relating thereto so as to provide a context for understanding the present and anticipating the future. A significant portion of the course is devoted to contracting for the creation, utilization, procurement and distribution of computer resources and the legal issues arising from such activities, including intellectual property issues, so that the student will be prepared to undertake such tasks. Case studies of real world situations and actual contracts are used. Substantial attention is also paid to the broad spectrum of developing legal issues arising from the increased utilization of and dependence upon technology in both the public and private sectors. Issues discussed vary depending upon current events and students' interests but include issues relating to individual freedoms and privacy, appropriate scope of intellectual property protection, entrepreneurship in the industry and its competitive structure, societal changes (good and bad) resulting for the use of technology and the harmonization of international laws as a result of the borderless nature of the technology driven society.
- The objective of the course is to prepare the student to be able to identify and address, with knowledge and confidence, both the legal/ business issues that arise from the creation, distribution, procurement and implementation of computer technology and the bigger societal issues that are presented by the rapid advancement and deployment of such technology. The course attempts to encourage the students to develop novel but realistic solutions to emerging issues.
- Case studies: *1
Class participation: *2
Writing assignments: *6
*1 Actual situations taken from more than four decades of practice and teaching in the field are used in the hypotheticals presented in class.
*2 Class participation is mandatory both in general discussions and in the hypothetical and discussion teams in which the students are required to participate and encouraged to be creative.
*3 Student teams negotiate technology transactions taken from actual practice and are required to identify and resolve the issues that arise in those transactions.
*4 Student teams discuss current issue arising from the implementation of technology and the implications for the future in the area under discussion.
*5 The course material is provided on electronic memory by the professor on the first day of class for downloading by the students to their computers at no cost the students. It consists of current relevant articles and advance sheets, materials written by the professor, representative agreements currently used in the industry and model agreements and check lists drafted by the professor addressing numerous different areas of technology contracting, hypotheticals and discussion topics.
*6 Each student is required to write a scholarly paper on any subject of the student's choosing relating to computers and the law, subject to the professor's approval. While a student can write a single draft of the paper, most students elect to write two drafts, in which case the student meets with the professor after the student's initial submission for the professor's critique of the paper and a discussion of areas for improvement or expansion in the second draft. Thought, writing and research are emphasized in considering the paper.
- Attendance: Mandatory, failure to honor will adversly impact final grade
Class participation: Mandatory, and considered in final grading
Writing assignments: Significant in determining final grade
Students are required to submit a paper on a topic of their choice on any issue relating to computers and the law (subject to the Instructor's approval). Submission of multiple drafts is encouraged, as is participation in various writing competitions open to the students. There is no final examination. Attendance and active class participation are mandatory. Grading is dependent upon class attendance and participation as well as the effort reflected in the seminar paper.
- The course material is provided on electronic memory by the professor on the first day of class for downloading by the students to their computers at no cost the students. It consists of current relevant articles and advance sheets, materials written by the professor, representative agreements currently used in the industry and model agreements and check lists drafted by the professor addressing numerous different areas of technology contracting, hypotheticals and discussion topics.
- 1 Draft degree req may be met with class
3 draft degree req may be met with class
Consult Professor about writing requirements
Business/Corporate transactions an element
Commercial and Bankruptcy Law Practice Area
Overview of class
Class Materials (Required)
Current as of 05/03/13 12:52:17 PM