Digital Law & Policy
Global digital networks and associated devices that access, store, manipulate, create, and transmit information have created a host of complex regulatory and political issues. Local, state, national, and international law also heavily influence the development, use, and impact of digital technologies. This intersection between technology and regulation will be explored in order to introduce students to digital technology law and policy issues that they will face as users, employees, designers, citizens, activists, and/or a number of other roles.
Topics include governance of network architecture, censorship and access, intellectual property, privacy and identity, liability for insecure systems and defective information, surveillance, computer crime, trans-border data flows, and international information policy.
The Digital Law and Policy course introduces ongoing and anticipated digital technology policy issues, emphasizing both legal and technological foundations. The course objectives are to give students the foundation to communicate and argue effectively about legal and political aspects of technology, to engage in the global digital policy debates to come, and to firmly understand the underlying technologies from which these issues arise. Weekly participation and blog entries will drive the classroom discussion. Assignments will include two debates (with accompanying written materials) and a final project.
The course uses a fantastic textbook by James Grimmelmann, updated each year and downloadable as PDF files using a pay-what-you-want model (suggested price of $30). WE LOVE IT!