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Welcome to Difficult Problems in Cyberlaw, a January course taught by Professor Jonathan Zittrain and Elizabeth Stark, co-hosted by Stanford Law School and Harvard Law SchooI.

In addition to this wiki, this class maintains a blog and twitter feed. Check them out!

If you are a student, please see the Student Responsibilities section and Course Logistics. For admins looking for details on field trips, please visit here. All regular class meetings will be at Stanford Law School Classroom 280B.

This map site has a map of the Bay Area, Stanford campus, and visitor parking at Stanford.

The four main difficult problems to be addressed are:

Cross-cutting themes include:

Group presentation schedule:

  • Friday, Jan. 15th: Ubiquitous Human Computing
  • Tuesday, Jan. 19th: Cybersecurity
  • Wednesday, Jan. 20th: Global Network Initiative
  • Thursday, Jan. 21st: Future of Wikipedia


WEEK ONE: DEFINING THE PROBLEMS[edit]

Monday, January 4th

LUNCH: 12-2pm SLS, Room 280B

Student introductions

CLASS: 7:20-9:20pm SLS Room 280B

A brief overview of the course, its goals and expectations, including an introduction to the difficult problems and the cross-cutting themes.
A quiz on Zittrain's book, The Future of the Internet: And How to Stop It will be given.
Brief introduction to the Global Network Initiative

Readings For Class:

Assignments: Before next class, post Day 2 Predictions.

Thoughts after class: Day 1 Thoughts


Tuesday, January 5th

CYBERSECURITY BACKGROUND: BONUS: 2-4pm SLS Room 280B

Professor Zittrain will interview Professor Jack Goldsmith as an overview of cybersecurity as it has evolved and as it can potentially be addressed.
  • Bonus Writing Opportunity: produce a summary of the cybersecurity event, to be used as background reading for Thursday

CLASS: 5:15-7:15pm SLS Room 280B

Identify the first-order problems regarding corporate responsibility and free expression on the internet. Examine how GNI attempts to address these problems and then evaluate whether GNI is a success and whether better approaches could be taken.
Introduction to ubiquitous human computing.

Guests:

  • Mark Chandler, CISCO
  • Chuck Cosson, Microsoft
  • Dunstan Hope, BSR

Readings:

Assignments: Before next class, post Day 3 Predictions.

Thoughts after class: Day 2 Thoughts


Wednesday, January 6th

CLASS: 6:30-8:30pm SLS Room 280B, guests to begin arriving at 7:00pm

Examine the nature of ubiquitous human computing and potential future applications of human computing and the dangers.
Introduction to cybersecurity.


Guests:

Readings:

ASSIGNMENT: Due -- Email Admin with Problem Topic Choice

Assignment: Before next class, post Day 4 Predictions.

Thoughts after class: Day 3 Thoughts


Thursday, January 7th

CLASS: 11:10am-1:10pm SLS Room 280B, guests to begin arriving at 11:40am

Cybersecurity has been identified as one of the greatest threats facing the United States today, but it is ill-defined and almost impossible to address. How can we frame this problem to better inspire solutions? How should government, military, businesses, and internet/tech approach the problem from different angles and do these different approaches work together?
Introduction to Future of Wikipedia

Guests:

  • Chuck Cosson, Microsoft

Readings:

Assignment: Before next class, post Day 5 Predictions.

Thoughts after class: Day 4 Thoughts


Friday, January 8th

FIELD TRIP: BONUS: 10:30 am eBay office visit (shuttle from SLS), including JZ talk and meeting with eBay lawyers and security experts

CLASS: 3:00-5:00pm SLS Room 280B, guests to begin arriving at 3:30pm

Wikipedia has grown quickly and rapidly to become one of if not the largest online content-generating collaboration. Following the 2009 Wikimania, Wikimedia has undertaken a self-review, looking at strategies for the future of Wikipedia. Is it a sustainable model? and if so, to what other fields is it applicable? How can its reception in academia be improved? and what are its applications for education?
Brief introduction of next week's cross-cutting themes

Guests:

Readings:

Assignment: Before next class, post Day 6 Predictions.

Thoughts after class: Day 5 Thoughts

EVENING EVENT: BONUS: Cocktails and hors d'oeuvres at David Hornik's office in Palo Alto after class.


Saturday, January 9th

Tour of San Francisco (Optional); details TBD. To give input and suggestions, visit Tour Ideas.

WEEK TWO: CROSS-CUTTING THEMES[edit]

Monday, January 11th

CLASS: 7:20-9:20pm SLS Room 280B, guests to begin arriving at 7:50pm

One potential way to address some of the problems addressed in this course is through innovations and technological solutions. Several solutions have changed the way our browsers work and thereby changed the way we interact with the internet, making life better. In what other areas could a similar approach be applied? Change the technology, save the world.
Introduction to cross-cutting theme of privacy, anonymity and liability on the internet

Guests:

  • John M. Agosta, DisputeFinder
  • Tye Rattenbury, DisputeFinder
  • Rob Ennals, DisputeFinder
  • Tad Hersch, DisputeFinder

Readings:

Assignment: Before next class, post Day 7 Predictions.

Thoughts after class: Day 6 Thoughts


Tuesday, January 12th

WORKSHOP: BONUS: 1-2pm Faculty Lounge, Stanford law.gov workshop Hosted by Carl Malamud

Some students attend the entire workshop, 10am-3pm


CLASS: 5:15-7:15pm SLS Room 280B, guests to begin arriving at 5:45pm

Privacy and anonymity can raise significant issues for accountability for online actions. Users often believe they are more anonymous than they truly are online - how can we better educate the public about the reality of privacy online? Consider the Drumbeat privacy project and creative commons issues.
Introduction to the cross-cutting theme of due process and dispute resolution on the internet.

Guests:

  • Ryan Calo, SLS Fellow
  • Ebele Okobi-Harris, Yahoo! Director of Business and Human Rights
  • Mark Surman, Mozilla
  • Michael Fertik, Reputation Defender
  • Carl Malamud
  • Julie Martin, Mozilla
  • Aza Raskin, Mozilla

Readings:

Additional Materials (suggested by student):

Assignment: Before next class, post Day 8 Predictions.

Thoughts after class: Day 7 Thoughts


Wednesday, January 13th

CLASS: 6:30-8:30pm SLS Room 280B, guests to begin arriving at 7:00pm

How do our due process concerns translate to the internet and online communities? Should due process exist on the internet? Is the internet public or private space and under what terms do we have the privilege or right to access?
Consider, for example, how much due process should be required to remove an account from Facebook, Google or Twitter. How much due process is necessary for a take-down on YouTube and what right of appeal do you have in any of these circumstances?
Introduction to online collaboration and group motivation strategies

Guests:

  • Kim Scott, Google

Readings:

Assignment: Before next class, post Day 9 Predictions.

Thoughts after class: Day 8 Thoughts


Thursday, January 14th

CLASS: 11:10am-1:10pm SLS Room 280B, guests to begin arriving at 11:40am

Online collaboration projects require internet organizations to motivate and coordinate large groups of people. This requires both motivating good actors to participate and motivating bad actors either to not participate or to conform to the rules/standards of the site. How can website hosts face these challenges? How involved should the users of cooperatively developed sites be in their governments?

Guests:

Readings:

Thoughts after class: Day 9 Thoughts

CLASS SOCIAL: Bonus, evening, details TBD


Friday, January 15th

CLASS: 1:00-3:00pm SLS Room 280B, guests to begin arriving at 1:30pm

Ubiquitous Human Computing presentation (60 min)
Discussion of solution's strengths and weaknesses and other approaches to consider

Guests:

  • Fabio Rosati, Elance

Group Documents:

Thoughts about the discussed solutions: UHC Solutions

WEEK THREE: SOLUTIONS[edit]

Monday, January 18th

NO CLASS: Martin Luther King, Jr. Day


Tuesday, January 19th

FIELD TRIP: BONUS: Google, 3:30pm

CLASS: Held at Google during visit

Cybersecurity presentation (60 min)
Discussion of solution's strengths and weaknesses and other approaches to consider

Guests:

  • Mitchell Baker

Wednesday, January 20th

FIELD TRIP: BONUS: Facebook, 12:30-2pm (TBC)

CLASS: 6:30-8:30pm SLS Room 280B, guests to begin arriving at 7:00pm

Global Network Initiative presentation (60 min)
Discussion of solution's strengths and weaknesses and other approaches to consider

Guests:

  • Esther Wojcicki

Thursday, January 21st

CLASS: 11:10am-1:10pm SLS Room 280B, guests to begin arriving at 11:40am

Future of Wikipedia presentation (60 min)
Discussion of solution's strengths and weaknesses and other approaches to consider

Guests:

WRAP-UP DINNER: 7:20-9:20pm SLS Student Lounge

Friday, January 22nd

ReputationDefender visit: 2:30pm


January 31st

FINAL PROJECTS DUE