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Full-Text Articles in Law

Exploding The Class Action Agency Costs Myth: The Social Utility Of Entrepreneurial Lawyers, Myriam E. Gilles, Gary B. Friedman Nov 2006

Exploding The Class Action Agency Costs Myth: The Social Utility Of Entrepreneurial Lawyers, Myriam E. Gilles, Gary B. Friedman

Articles

In this article, we challenge the traditional view that entrepreneurial plaintiffs' class action lawyers operating entirely according to their own economic self-interest serve no social utility, or worse yet, tremendous disutility. In seeking to counter this notion, we try to show that the agency costs problem long derided in class action practice is overblown: in the majority of small-claims class actions, there is no legitimate reason to care whether class members are being undercompensated (or compensated at all), nor any reason to worry that entrepreneurial lawyers are being overcompensated. Rather, we assert that the driving force behind class action practice …


Second Best Damage Action Deterrence, Margo Schlanger Jan 2006

Second Best Damage Action Deterrence, Margo Schlanger

Articles

Potential defendants faced with the prospect of tort or tort-like damage actions can reduce their liability exposure in a number of ways. Prior scholarship has dwelled primarily on the possibility that they may respond to the threat of liability by augmenting the amount of care they take.1 Defendants (I limit myself to defendants for simplicity) will increase their expenditures on care, so the theory goes, when those expenditures yield sufficient liability-reducing dividends; more care decreases liability exposure by simultaneously making it less likely that the actors will be found to have behaved tortiously in the event of an accident and …


The Economics Of Open Access Law Publishing, Jessica D. Litman Jan 2006

The Economics Of Open Access Law Publishing, Jessica D. Litman

Articles

The conventional model of scholarly publishing uses the copyright system as a lever to induce commercial publishers and printers to disseminate the results of scholarly research. Recently, we have seen a number of high-profile experiments seeking to use one of a variety of forms of open access scholarly publishing to develop an alternative model. Critics have not quarreled with the goals of open access publishing; instead, they've attacked the viability of the open access business model. If we are examining the economics of open access publishing, we shouldn't limit ourselves to the question whether open access journals have fielded a …


Ip's Problem Child: Shifting The Paradigms For Software Protection, Jacqueline D. Lipton Jan 2006

Ip's Problem Child: Shifting The Paradigms For Software Protection, Jacqueline D. Lipton

Articles

Computer software is somewhat of a problem child for intellectual property law. Courts and legislatures have struggled to encourage innovations in software development while, at the same time, attempting to avoid undesirable digital information monopolies. Neither the patent nor the copyright system has provided a particularly satisfactory paradigm for software protection. Although patents have received greater attention than copyrights in the software context (consider, for example, the recent BlackBerry case), copyright law arguably creates more insidious undercurrents in today's marketplace. This is partly because we have not yet appreciated the potential impact of recent developments in programming methodology and digital …


The (Legal) Pains Of Vioxx: Why Product Liability Can Make Products More Dangerous, Omri Ben-Shahar Jan 2006

The (Legal) Pains Of Vioxx: Why Product Liability Can Make Products More Dangerous, Omri Ben-Shahar

Articles

Comparing the experience of Vioxx and Celebrex leads Omri Ben-Shahar to think that stiff product liability has the perverse effect of inducing manufacturers of defective products to leave these products on the market, rather than withdraw them.


Boilerplate And Economic Power In Auto Manufacturing Contracts, Omri Ben-Shahar, James J. White Jan 2006

Boilerplate And Economic Power In Auto Manufacturing Contracts, Omri Ben-Shahar, James J. White

Articles

This Article is structured as follows. Part I compares the terms and conditions in the purchase orders of the Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and highlights important differences in the substance of these boilerplate provisions. It argues that these differences cannot be easily reconciled with the prediction that sophisticated parties draft the most efficient boilerplate terms. Part II examines how these forms are drafted, how their terms are negotiated, and how the OEMs guard their terms from erosion. It provides some insight on how tailoring occurs and how the internal organization of a party to a deal affects the terms that …


Tracing, Peter B. Oh Jan 2006

Tracing, Peter B. Oh

Articles

Tracing is a method that appears within multiple fields of law. Distinct conceptions of tracing, however, have arisen independently within securities and remedial law. In the securities context plaintiffs must trace their securities to a specific offering to pursue certain relief under the Securities Act of 1933. In the remedial context victims who trace their misappropriated value into a wrongdoer's hands can claim any derivative value, even if it has appreciated.

This article is the first to compare and then cross-apply tracing within these two contexts. Specifically, this article argues that securities law should adopt a version of the rules-based …


Homo Sacer, Homosexual: Some Thoughts On Waging Tax Guerrilla Warfare, Anthony C. Infanti Jan 2006

Homo Sacer, Homosexual: Some Thoughts On Waging Tax Guerrilla Warfare, Anthony C. Infanti

Articles

Inspired by Giorgio Agamben's Homo Sacer: Sovereign Power and Bare Life, this essay raises the question whether lesbians and gay men should fundamentally rethink their relationship with the law. Until now, lesbians and gay men have played by the rules: We bide our time for the appropriate moment to challenge the application of the law, and then do so from within the legal system through impact litigation. Focusing on Agamben's discussion of Kafka's parable, "Before the Law," this essay challenges us to consider whether, instead of engaging the law on its own terms, lesbians and gay men should use the …


Social Software, Groups, And Governance, Michael J. Madison Jan 2006

Social Software, Groups, And Governance, Michael J. Madison

Articles

Formal groups play an important role in the law. Informal groups largely lie outside it. Should the law be more attentive to informal groups? The paper argues that this and related questions are appearing more frequently as a number of computer technologies, which I collect under the heading social software, increase the salience of groups. In turn, that salience raises important questions about both the significance and the benefits of informal groups. The paper suggests that there may be important social benefits associated with informal groups, and that the law should move towards a framework for encouraging and recognizing them. …


The Idea Of The Law Review: Scholarship, Prestige, And Open Access, Michael J. Madison Jan 2006

The Idea Of The Law Review: Scholarship, Prestige, And Open Access, Michael J. Madison

Articles

This Essay was written as part of a Symposium on open access publishing for legal scholarship. It makes the claim that open access publishing models will succeed, or not, to the extent that they account for the existing economy of prestige that drives law reviews and legal scholarship. What may seem like a lot of uncharitable commentary is intended instead as an expression of guarded optimism: Imaginative reuse of some existing tools of scholarly publishing (even by some marginalized members of the prestige economy - or perhaps especially by them) may facilitate the emergence of a viable open access norm.


Metaphor, Objects, And Commodities, George H. Taylor, Michael J. Madison Jan 2006

Metaphor, Objects, And Commodities, George H. Taylor, Michael J. Madison

Articles

This Article is a contribution to a Symposium that focuses on the ideas of Margaret Jane Radin as a point of departure, and particularly on her analyses of propertization and commodification. While Radin focuses on the harms associated with commodification of the person, relying on Hegel's idea of alienation, we argue that objectification, and in particular objectification of various features of the digital environment, may have important system benefits. We present an extended critique of Radin's analysis, basing the critique in part on Gadamer's argument that meaning and application are interrelated and that meaning changes with application. Central to this …