Computer Law Seminar Readings

This list of assigned readings will grow as the quarter progresses. In particular, look for the appearance of items marked as NEW! Oval Red/Blue (April 18) and NEW! Starburst Oval Orange (April 29).

Many of these materials were written for lawyers, which means they presume some familiarity with legal terms and concepts. Of course I encourage you to note unfamiliar terms and bring them to class so I can (try to) clarify them.

The paper-based references will be available in the ICS grad course materials file (the upper left drawer in the filing cabinet outside the ICS kitchen). If an entry below doesn't contain a URL or some other indication of its source, the cabinet is where you'll find it. NEW! Starburst Oval Orange The April 29 materials are listed below by topic; they are all collected together in the filing cabinet, however, for ease of retrieval.

  1. Sources of Law [This section is for reference; it's not an assignment]

    1. Federal

      1. U.S. Constitution:

      2. Legislation and Statutes

        1. U. S. Code: or or

        2. Legislation in progress:

      3. Courts

        1. U. S. Supreme Court opinions:

        2. U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal:

    2. California

      1. Legislation and Statutes:

      2. Court opinions:

        1. Filed in the last 60 days:

        2. Older opinions: or (fee-based)

  2. Computer Law--General

    1. A good overview of how lawyers think about computer law issues can be found in the on-line course, Cyberspace Law for Non-Laywers. The authors (Larry Lessig, David Post, and Eugene Volokh) give a concise and well-reasoned overview of many computer law issues from an authoritative perspective. This is a valuable perspective even though it's over five yeas old; you just shouldn't rely on it for the precise status of the law today, since many of the issues have evolved since then.

    2. There are good, short, reasonably current overviews of many legal topics at .

    3. NEW! Oval Red/Blue Ian C. Ballon, "Internet and E-Commerce Law -- 2002." This is a lengthy outline that gives the recent status of most computer law issues. I'd suggest referring back to it as we touch on each new topic (or using it for pointers to your project topic).

  3. Intellectual Property--Patent

    1. NEW! Oval Red/Blue Patent sources and references [for reference, not an assignment]

      1. U. S. Patent and Trademark Office:

      2. USPTO Patent Database:

      3. Delphion Intellectual Property Network Patent Database:

      4. USPTO examiners' guidelines for computer-related inventions:

    2. NEW! Oval Red/Blue Alison E. Cantor, "Using the Written Description and Enablement Requirements to Limit Biotechnology Patents."

    3. NEW! Starburst Oval Orange Eli A. Loots, "The 2001 USPTO Written Description Guidelines and Gene Claims." This isn't required; it's just there for those with an interest in biotechnology.

    4. NEW! Starburst Oval Orange Tiffany Weeks, " v., Inc." This describes's attempt to use its "one-click" patent to prevent Barnes andNoble from doing something similar on their web site.

  4. Intellectual Property--Copyright

    1. NEW! Oval Red/Blue Ian C. Ballon, "Bots, Screen Scraping, Content Aggregation and the Evolving Doctrine of Database Trespass."

    2. NEW! Starburst Oval Orange Lisa M. Zepeda, "A&M Records, Inc. v. Napster, Inc." This describes the case that shut Napster down.

    3. NEW! Starburst Oval Orange Note, "Felten v. Recording Industry Association Of America, Inc." This brief note describes the disposition of Edward Felten's suit to invalidate part of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, which wasn't decided on first amendment grounds.

  5. Intellectual Property--Trade Secret and Trademark

    1. NEW! Starburst Oval Orange Trade Secret Home Page has a variety of trade secret information [for reference, not an assignment]

    2. NEW! Starburst Oval Orange Jian Xiao, "The First Wave of Cases under the ACPA." The Anti-Cybersquatting Consumer Protection Act prevents opportunistic exploitation of trademarked domain names.

    3. NEW! Starburst Oval Orange Danielle Pasqualone, "GlobeSpan, Inc. v. O'Neill." The author argues for preserving a trade secret law doctrine that's is in tension with the public policy decision to favor employee mobility.

  6. Jurisdiction in Cyberspace

    1. NEW! Starburst Oval Orange Sonal N. Mehta, "Pavlovich v. Superior Court of Santa Clara County." If you live in California and maintain there a web site that somehow violates Mississippi law, can Mississippi prosecute you for it? That's the cyberspace jurisdiction question, which this article discusses.

    2. NEW! Starburst Oval Orange Christine Duh, "Yahoo! Inc. v. LICRA." This article addresses international jurisdiction issues.

  7. Contracts

    1. NEW! Starburst Oval Orange Ryan J. Casamiquela, "Contractual Assent and Enforceability in Cyberspace." This article discusses "click-wrap" licenses

  8. Privacy

    1. NEW! Starburst Oval Orange Laura Quilter, "The Continuing Expansion of Cyberspace Trespass to Chattels." One method of curtailing Email spam is to apply the law of trespass in cyberspace.

    2. NEW! Starburst Oval Orange Note, "Kyllo v. United States." This brief note covers the thermal imaging case (where law enforcement detected marijuana plants using a device that read unusual heat patterns from outside the house where the plants were grown).

  9. Computer Crime

    1. NEW! Starburst Oval Orange California Penal Code sec. 502 and 502.01 (the California computer crime law). You'll have to scroll down the page to find these sections.

David G. Kay, 406B Computer Science
University of California, Irvine
Irvine, CA 92697-3425 -- (949) 824-5072 -- Fax (949) 824-4056 -- Email

Tuesday, April 29, 2003 -- 9:33 PM