Law in the Internet Society

Law in the Internet Society

Professor Eben Moglen
Columbia Law School
Fall 2012

FirstPaper? drafts should be submitted soon. Those not yet done should be have posted something by October 22 at latest.

Our scheduled session on October 25 will be replaced by a video presentation and subsequent discussion. Please watch Freedom2Connect: Innovation Under Austerity. Discussion will occur at InnovationUnderAusterity.

On November 1, we continue discussing Privacy in Private and Public Law.

My office hours are Thursday 1pm to 4pm, and Friday 9am to 10am, in JGH 642. To make an appointment outside those hours, please write, or consult my assistant, Ian Sullivan, at 212-461-1905.

On the Radar

Brian Proffitt, BitTorrent Downloads Booming - And Benefitting Musicians, ReadWriteWeb, September 18, 2012

Will Oremus, Why Twitter Caved and Handed an “Occupy” Protester’s Data to the Government, Slate, September 14, 2012

Jon Campbell , LAPD Spy Device Taps Your Cell Phone, LA Weekly, September 13 2012

Zoe Corbyn, Facebook experiment boosts US voter turnout, Nature, September 12 2012

Tarun Wadhwa, The Next Privacy Battle: Cameras That Judge Your Every Move, Forbes, August 30, 2012

Sara Reardon, FBI launches $1 billion face recognition project, New Scientist, September 7, 2012

Susanne Craig, What Restaurants Know (About You), New York Times, September 5, 2012

Jon Brodkin, Police seizure of text messages violated 4th Amendment, judge rules, ARS Technica, September 5, 2012

Parmy Olson,, FBI Agent's Laptop 'Hacked' To Grab 12 Million Apple IDs, Forbes, September 4, 2012

Sasha Issenberg, Why Campaign Reporters Are Behind the Curve, New York Times, September 1, 2012

Ryan Gallagher, FBI To Give Facial Recognition Software to Law-Enforcement Agencies,, August 23, 2012

AP, SKorean judges block law requiring real names online, ruling it restricts freedom of speech, Winnipeg Free Press, August 23, 2012

Shane Harris, Giving In to the Surveillance State, New York Times, August 23, 2012

Laura Poitras, The Program, New York Times, August 22, 2012

Andy Greenberg, U.S. Customs Tracks Millions Of License Plates And Has Shared Data With Insurance Firms, Forbes, August 21, 2012

Adam Goldman and Matt Apuzzo, NYPD: Muslim spying led to no leads, terror cases, AP, August 21, 2012

Dave Lee, How algorithms will help us spend, spend, spend, BBC News, August 20, 2012

Naomi Wolk, The new totalitarianism of surveillance technology, the guardian, August 15, 2012

David Kravets, Appeals Court OKs Warrantless, Real-Time Mobile Phone Tracking, Wired, August 14, 2012

Paul Harris, NYPD and Microsoft launch advanced citywide surveillance system, the guardian, August 8, 2012

Kashmir Hill, Beware, Tech Abandoners. People Without Facebook Accounts Are 'Suspicious.', Forbes, August 8, 2012

Alistair Croll, Big data is our generation’s civil rights issue, and we don’t know it, O'Reilly Radar, August 2, 2012

Tom Simonite, What Facebook Knows, MIT Technology Review, July/August 2012

Olivia Solon, Study: Twitter analysis can be used to detect psychopathy, Wired, July 23, 2012

Timothy B. Lee, It's legal: cops seize cell phone, impersonate owner, ars technica, July 19, 2012

Alexandra Alter, Your E-Book Is Reading You. Wall Street Journal, July 19, 2012

Editorial, The End of Privacy?, New York Times, July 14, 2012

Eric Lichtblau and Scott Shane, Vast F.D.A. Effort Tracked E-Mails of Its Scientists, New York Times, July 14, 2012

Emil Protalinski, Facebook scans chats and posts for criminal activity, CNET, July 12, 2012

Eric Lichtblau, More Demands on Cell Carriers in Surveillance, New York Times, July 8, 2012

Kashmir Hill, Data Mining CEO Says He Pays For Burgers With Cash To Avoid Junk Food Purchases Being Tracked, Forbes, June 15, 2012


Introduction, Political Economy:
The Way We Live Now

Sociology, Economics, Legal Theory:
Grasping the Net

Copyright and Other Intellectual Improperty:
Anarchists, Authors, and Owners

Carriage Regulation:
Controlling the Switches

Privacy in Private and Public Law:
The State, The Spook, The Cop, Her Wife, and His Lover

Eyes Wide Shut:
Taboo Enforcement and Free Expression

Making Broadcasters Unconstitutional:
Rethinking Media Law

Electronic Democracy:
Restructuring Politics

A Word on Technology Old and New About the Word

This seminar is an attempt to learn about, understand and predict the development of law in a rapidly changing area. We must assemble the field of knowledge relevant to our questions even as we begin trying to answer them. Wiki technology is an ideal match for the work we have in hand. Below you will find an introduction to this particular wiki, or TWiki, where you can learn as much or as little about how this technology works as you want.

For now, the most important thing is just that any page of the wiki has an edit button, and your work in the course consists of writings that we will collaboratively produce here. You can make new pages, edit existing pages, attach files to any page, add links, leave comments in the comment boxes--whatever in your opinion adds to a richer dialog. During the semester I will assign writing exercises, which will also be posted here. All of everyone's work contributes to a larger and more informative whole, which is what our conversation is informed by, and helps us to understand.

Please begin by registering. I look forward to seeing you at our first meeting on the 10th.

Introduction to the LawNetSoc Web

The LawNetSoc site is a collaborative class space built on Twiki [], a free software wiki system. If this is your first time using a wiki for a long term project, or first time using a wiki at all, you might want to take a minute and look around this site. If you see something on the page that you don't know how to create in a wiki, take a look at the text that produced it using the "Edit" button at the top of each page, and feel free to try anything out in the Sandbox.

All of the Twiki documentation is also right at hand. Follow the TWiki link in the sidebar. There are a number of good tutorials and helpful FAQs there explaining the basics of what a wiki does, how to use Twiki, and how to format text.

From TWiki's point of view, this course, Law in the Internet Society, is one "web." There are other webs here: the sandbox for trying wiki experiments, for example, and my other courses, etc. You're welcome to look around in those webs too, of course. Below are some useful tools for dealing with this particular web of ours. You can see the list of recent changes, and you can arrange to be notified of changes, either by email or by RSS feed. I would strongly recommend that you sign up for one or another form of notification; if not, it is your responsibility to keep abreast of the changes yourself.

LawNetSoc Web Utilities


Webs Webs

Attachments Attachments

  Attachment Action Size Dateup Who Comment
html technology-15598438.htm props, move 92.3 K 16 Nov 2011 - 01:09 MarciaGivord Arts groups tell BT to block access to The Pirate Bay
html internet_and_democratic_change.html props, move 16.0 K 17 Nov 2011 - 19:51 MarciaGivord  
pdf 120925designerwareanal.pdf props, move 26.8 K 28 Sep 2012 - 17:31 CamilleFrancois FTC paper about PC Rental Agent and the "Detective mode" on their rent-to-buy computers
r131 - 20 Oct 2012 - 16:37:59 - EbenMoglen
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All material marked as authored by Eben Moglen is available under the license terms CC-BY-SA version 4.
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