Automated Notices for Copyright Infringement: Pitfalls and Remedies

Background of Notice and Takedown Since the birth of the internet, online service providers (OSPs) have butted heads with copyright holders over whether OSPs should be responsible for copyright-infringing material posted by their users. Should Google be liable for infringement when it provides links to websites that post photographs without a copyright license?[1] Should YouTube owe damages for hosting a video that plays a song or shows a clip from a movie protected by copyright?[2] Continue Reading →

Gill v. Whitford and the Math of Gerrymandering

On October 3, 2017, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Gill v. Whitford, 137 S. Ct. 2268 (Mem) (2017), the latest case to reach the court contesting partisan gerrymandering. First coined in 1812 to lampoon a Massachusetts governor (Elbridge Gerry) and a particularly ugly congressional district (allegedly resembling a salamander), gerrymandering is the practice of crafting voting districts to give one group an electoral advantage over another. Erica Klarre, Gerrymandering Is Illegal, But Only Mathematicians Can Continue Reading →

Rapid DNA Testing: Verification or Collection Tool?

This year, the first local police precinct received and began using an on-site Rapid DNA testing device. Within 90 minutes, a cheek swab of any suspect can be run, exonerating or verifying their identity. If this program is a success, more criminal investigations will be solved with greater efficiency than ever before.  However, the limitations of the devices are pronounced. They cannot, for example, be used to help parse the controversy surrounding interpretation of complex Continue Reading →

Artificial Intelligence and its Impacts on the Legal Profession

In a 2015 Altman Weil survey of law firm managing partners, 47% said that, in the next five to ten years, they could envision a law-focused artificial intelligence (AI) tool replacing paralegals, 35% could envision the replacement of first-year associates, and 19% could envision the replacement of second- and third-year associates. As a current law student, I can’t help but wonder whether I can beat the clock and survive a robot invasion. Artificial Intelligence and Continue Reading →

Blockchain in the U.S. Regulatory Setting: Evidentiary Use in Vermont, Delaware, and Elsewhere

Joanna Diane Caytas* I. Introduction In February 2017, the Delaware Court of Chancery faced a conundrum: following settlement of a shareholder action after a contested merger, shareholders representing 49,164,415 shares claimed settlement proceeds, but the class contained only 36,793,758 shares.[1] By definition, holders of over 12 million of these shares must have lacked entitlement to settlement disbursements, yet all claimant shareholders presented valid evidence of ownership. Investigation by class attorneys failed to establish the “current” Continue Reading →

If You’re Going to Delete All My Facebook Posts, Then You Might As Well Do It Right

Judicial benchslap stories are juicy legal fodder, and this story was no different. Recently, the legal community eagerly gossiped about a federal judge that lashed out against a well-known New York law firm. The offense? Judge Nicholas Garaufis of the Eastern District of New York was infuriated that the firm had sent a mere junior associate instead of a partner to a hearing on two cases that “implicate[] international terrorism and the murder of innocent people Continue Reading →

Machine Learning and Intellectual Property

On March 15, 2016, AlphaGo—a machine designed by researchers at DeepMind, an artificial intelligence laboratory owned by Google—defeated Lee Sedol, the best Go player in the world. Go is a popular board game played by two people; the goal is to surround more points on the board than your opponent. For years, Go had posed a unique challenge to computer scientists. The rate at which possible moves in the game increase was so significant that Continue Reading →

Police Body Cameras and Public Records Requests: Another Privacy Frontier

Police departments around the country have been rolling out body-worn camera (“BWC”) programs among other efforts to address accountability and transparency concerns in police conduct. Police departments, legislatures, and community groups alike believe that BWC programs will provide benefits in many forms, including lowering the incidence of police violence, reducing civilian complaints against officers, and streamlining internal police investigations. Public opinion polls overwhelmingly support their use, and news outlets have been eager to report early Continue Reading →

First Grocery Shopping and Now Courts: Unfolding the Proposed Online-Court System for the UK.

In the latest Civil Justice Council report, Professor Richard Susskind proposes to reduce expenses to the judicial system by establishing “Her Majesty’s Online Court” (HMOC), an Online Dispute Resolution system for civil court cases below £25,000. Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) has successfully allowed parties who are unable to meet face-to-face to negotiate and resolve their disputes over the internet. Most often, ODR has been used to bridge the gap between consumer and supplier in an online Continue Reading →

How Digital Resources are Helping NY Communities, One Car at a Time

Over the past three years, students in Columbia Law School’s Lawyering in the Digital Age Clinic have teamed up with the judges at New York City’s Office of Administrative Trials and Hearings and the Legal Aid Society to create a website to help people who had their cars confiscated during an arrest get their cars back. The NYC Police Department can seize a car during the course of an arrest for a variety of reasons, Continue Reading →