Pirates, Spies & Speech: Exploring the Intersection of Law & Technology in the Information Age

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The law has always had to adapt to deal with challenges created by new technologies. The first copyright law, for instance, can trace its origin to the proliferation of publishing enabled by the printing press. Today this issue is especially important because technology develops much more quickly than the law can respond. And since things like the World Wide Web, social media, smart phones, and wearables are so integral to modern life, this time between tech development and legal change can be lead to problems that the law cannot easily address.

As such, this course will explore the intersection of law, policy, and the modern connective technologies that many of use daily. To this end, we will look at copyright, fair use, and the changing concept of IP ownership, particularly since the growth and fall of Napster; privacy and data security, particularly since Edward Snowden’s revelations; and how copyright and privacy collide with free speech, particularly considering cases like the fight between Terry “Hulk Hogan” Bollea and Gawker Media.

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