About the Cyberlaw Clinic

Harvard Law School‘s Cyberlaw Clinic, based at Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society, provides high-quality, pro-bono legal services to appropriate clients on issues relating to the Internet, technology, and intellectual property. Students enhance their preparation for high-tech practice and earn course credit by working on real-world litigation, client counseling, advocacy, and transactional / licensing projects and cases. The Clinic strives to help clients achieve success in their activities online, mindful of (and in response to) existing law. The Clinic also works with clients to shape the law’s development through policy and advocacy efforts. The Cyberlaw Clinic was the first of its kind, and it continues its tradition of innovation in its areas of practice. The Clinic works independently, with law students supervised by experienced and licensed attorneys.  In some cases, the Clinic collaborates with counsel throughout the country to take advantage of regional or substantive legal expertise.

From the Blog

Mass SJC Sides with Free Speech Advocates, Declares False Campaign Speech Statute Unconstitutional

LucasThe Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court handed a big win to free speech advocates today in its decision in Commonwealth v. Lucas, siding with defendant Melissa Lucas and declaring Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 56, Section 42 (“Section 42”) unconstitutional.  The Cyberlaw Clinic filed an amicus brief (PDF) in the case, in support of defendant Lucas, on behalf of the New England First Amendment Coalition, Boston Globe Media Partners, LLC (owners of the Boston Globe), Hearst Television, Inc. (owners of WCVB-TV Channel 5 in Boston), the Massachusetts Newspaper Publishers Association, the New England Newspaper and Press Association, Inc., and the New England Society of Newspaper Editors. The SJC’s reasoning followed many of the arguments advanced by our amicus coalition.

Protecting Independent Medical Device Research

IMG_0614Over the past several months the Cyberlaw Clinic has been working with medical device researchers Hugo Campos, Jay Radcliffe, Karen Sandler, and Ben West, in a proceeding before the Copyright Office regarding the anticircumvention laws created in the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. Here’s what we’ve been doing, and why we’re doing it.

The Clinic has written about this proceeding twice before, but as a quick review: our clients each study the safety, security, and effectiveness of medical devices. Some look at the devices from a system design perspective, analyzing the hardware and software of the devices for misconfigurations or vulnerabilities. Others look at the devices as they are applied to a particular patient’s care, and help patients retrieve important information off the devices that the device otherwise would not share, or would only make available through periodic checkups with doctors once every several months. Their research has helped patients and doctors better tailor care, the public understand the nature of medical device risks, and regulatory agencies like FDA improve government oversight of devices.

Featured

Legal and Ethical Issues in the Use of Telepresence Robots

WeRobotPaperCoverLEGAL AND ETHICAL ISSUES IN THE USE OF TELEPRESENCE ROBOTS: BEST PRACTICES AND TOOLKIT (WORKING DRAFT) | March 27, 205 | Spring 2015 Cyberlaw Clinic students Jack Xu and Cecillia Xie teamed up with the Clinic’s Managing Director, Chris Bavitz, and J. Nathan Matias and Chelsea Barabas of the MIT Center for Civic Media to prepare a working draft paper entitled “Legal and Ethical Issues in the Use of Telepresence Robots:  Best Practices and Toolkit.” The paper was submitted for discussion at the WeRobot 2015 conference held April 10 – 11, 2015 at University of Washington School of Law in Seattle, where Cecillia, Jack, Chris, and Chelsea joined discussant Laurel Riek of Notre Dame for a panel discussion. The working draft builds on work the Clinic did with Nate and Chelsea in connection with their “People’s Bot” project and lays the groundwork for development a broader toolkit examining privacy and related concerns that arise in connection with the use of telepresence robots.