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A Matter Of Facts: The Evolution Of Copyright’S Fact-Exclusion And Its Implications For Disinformation And Democracy, Jessica Silbey Jan 2024

A Matter Of Facts: The Evolution Of Copyright’S Fact-Exclusion And Its Implications For Disinformation And Democracy, Jessica Silbey

Faculty Scholarship

The Article begins with a puzzle: the curious absence of an express fact-exclusion from copyright protection in both the Copyright Act and its legislative history despite it being a well-founded legal principle. It traces arguments in the foundational Supreme Court case (Feist Publications v. Rural Telephone Service) and in the Copyright Act’s legislative history to discern a basis for the fact-exclusion. That research trail produces a legal genealogy of the fact-exclusion based in early copyright common law anchored by canonical cases, Baker v. Selden, Burrow-Giles v. Sarony, and Wheaton v. Peters. Surprisingly, none of them …


Two Decades Of Trips In China, Peter K. Yu Sep 2023

Two Decades Of Trips In China, Peter K. Yu

Faculty Scholarship

This chapter reviews China’s engagement with the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) in the past twenty years. It begins by highlighting TRIPS-related developments in the first decade of China’s WTO membership. The chapter then discusses the country’s ‘innovative turn’ in the mid-2000s and the ramifications of its changing policy positions. This chapter continues to examine the US-China trade war, in particular the second TRIPS complaint that the United States filed against China in March 2018. It concludes with observations about the impact of the TRIPS Agreement on China, China’s impact on that agreement and how the …


Foreword, Jessica Silbey Mar 2023

Foreword, Jessica Silbey

Faculty Scholarship

Most of us think we are familiar with graffiti – lettering on trains or graphic images on walls that follow us as we walk by. But Enrico Bonadio’s new book on graffiti and street art opens a door to more complex and nuanced worlds of artists and their communities. The focus is on everyday creators of graffiti and street art. Built from nearly 100 interviews and hundreds of hours of observation, the book is filled with the voices of artists and vivid details of their plein air studios and interactions. Also present in the book is the author, who weaves …


Understanding Intellectual Property: Expression, Function, And Individuation, Mala Chatterjee Jan 2023

Understanding Intellectual Property: Expression, Function, And Individuation, Mala Chatterjee

Faculty Scholarship

Underlying the fundamental structure of intellectual property law — specifically, the division between copyright and patent law — are at least two substantive philosophical assumptions. The first is that artistic works and inventions are importantly different, such that they warrant different legal systems: copyright law on the one hand, and patent law on the other. And the second is that particular artistic works and inventions can be determinately individuated from each other, and can thereby be the subjects of distinct and delineated legal rights. But neither the law nor existing scholarship provides a comprehensive analysis of these categories, what distinguishes …


A Qualitative Method For Investigating Design, Jessica Silbey, Mark P. Mckenna Jan 2023

A Qualitative Method For Investigating Design, Jessica Silbey, Mark P. Mckenna

Faculty Scholarship

This chapter describes our qualitative study of designers and design practice. It situates the study in the broader field of empirical studies of intellectual property, and it describes in detail the methodology and benefits of a qualitative interview study of designers and design practice to shed light on some of the persistent puzzles in design law. The chapter focuses on four lines of inquiry: defining “design” and “design practice” from within the profession; exploring the various inputs to design practice and the process of “problem solving” designers pursue; understanding what “integrated” form and function mean to designers; and explaining the …


Questions Of Intellectual Property And Fundamental Values In The Digital Age, Jessica Silbey Jan 2023

Questions Of Intellectual Property And Fundamental Values In The Digital Age, Jessica Silbey

Faculty Scholarship

Today's intellectual property debates, in both law and the larger society, are a bellwether of changing justice needs in the twenty-first century. As the digital age democratizes technological opportunities, it brings intellectual property law into mainstream everyday culture. This generates debates about the relationship between the constitutional interest in "the progress of science and useful arts" and other fundamental values, such as equality, privacy, and distributive justice. These values, which were not explicitly part of intellectual property regimes in prior eras, are especially challenged in today's internet world.

The article (which was presented as the annual Nies Lecture in April …


Centering Black Women In Patent History, Jessica Silbey Nov 2022

Centering Black Women In Patent History, Jessica Silbey

Faculty Scholarship

Professor Kara Swanson’s latest article is a remarkable example of legal historical scholarship that excavates stories from the past to illuminate the present. It is chock full of archival evidence and historical analysis that explains gaps and silences in the United States patent registry as evidence of marginalized inventors–particularly Black women–who should be named inventors but are not.

The article is arresting reading for anyone interested in antebellum history, intellectual property, and the intersection of racism and sexism in law. Mostly, I am grateful to Professor Swanson for doing the obviously very hard work of digging through archives, reading microfiche, …


Nonpatentability Of Business Methods: Legal And Economic Analysis, Peter Menell, Michael J. Meurer Oct 2022

Nonpatentability Of Business Methods: Legal And Economic Analysis, Peter Menell, Michael J. Meurer

Faculty Scholarship

In this brief filed in Bilski vs. Kappos, pending before the U.S. Supreme Court, we argue that the "useful Arts" limitation of the the Intellectual Property Clause of the U.S.Constitution restricts the scope of Congress's patent power to technological advances. Beyond this constitutional limitation, Congress has not extended patent protection to business methods. The subject matter provision of the 1952 Patent Act merely codified existing subject matter categories and limitations, including the exclusion of business methods. The First Inventor Defense Act of 1999 did not alter this limitation on patentable subject matter. It did not amend the subject matter provision. …


Sy-Stem-Ic Bias: An Exploration Of Gender And Race Representation On University Patents, Jordana Goodman Apr 2022

Sy-Stem-Ic Bias: An Exploration Of Gender And Race Representation On University Patents, Jordana Goodman

Faculty Scholarship

People of color and women are underrepresented in science, technology, engineering and math (“STEM”) fields in the United States. Through both intentional and unintentional structural barriers, universities continue to lose valuable intellectual resources by perpetuating a lack of gender, racial, and ethnic diversity as people climb the academic ladder. Identifying racial and gender disparities between university campus populations and their patent representation quantifies the qualitatively observed systemic racism and sexism plaguing STEM. Although many have written about racial and gender underrepresentation in STEM, no author has ever endeavored to simultaneously quantify the racial and gender gap at universities in the …


20 Years Of Trade Secrets Scholarship (2002-2022), Sharon Sandeen Jan 2022

20 Years Of Trade Secrets Scholarship (2002-2022), Sharon Sandeen

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


Floors And Ceilings In International Copyright Treaties: Berne/Trips/Wct Minima And Maxima, Jane C. Ginsburg Jan 2022

Floors And Ceilings In International Copyright Treaties: Berne/Trips/Wct Minima And Maxima, Jane C. Ginsburg

Faculty Scholarship

This paper addresses “floors” – minimum substantive international protections, and “ceilings” – maximum substantive international protections, set out in the Berne Convention and subsequent multilateral copyright accords. While much scholarship has addressed Berne minima, the “maxima” have generally received less attention. This Comment first describes the general structure of the Berne Convention, TRIPS and WCT regarding these contours, and then analyzes their application to the recent “press publishers’ right” promulgated in the 2019 EU Digital Single Market Directive. Within the universe of multilateral copyright obligations, the Berne maxima (prohibition of protection for facts and news of the day), buttressed by …


Help Was Not On The Way: Intellectual Property Liability Relief In A Pandemic Era, Kim Vu-Dinh Jan 2022

Help Was Not On The Way: Intellectual Property Liability Relief In A Pandemic Era, Kim Vu-Dinh

Faculty Scholarship

On January 21, 2020, the United States recorded its first case of COVID-19. By April of that same year, numerous hospitals across the nation had exhausted entire reserves of personal protective equipment (PPE), with looming uncertainty as to when they would be replenished. As infection numbers increased exponentially, global demand for some types of PPE increased by 1000%.

Volunteers across the nation assembled teams of makers—some professionals, but also scores of amateurs—to craft the critical equipment needed to slow down the onslaught of the pandemic. From creating cloth masks to ventilator pistons, nonprofits and everyday citizens were able to partially …


Copyright, Creativity, Big Media And Cultural Value: Incorporating The Author, Jane C. Ginsburg Jan 2022

Copyright, Creativity, Big Media And Cultural Value: Incorporating The Author, Jane C. Ginsburg

Faculty Scholarship

Copyright, Creativity, Big Media and Cultural Value is a wide-ranging work of immense erudition and archival research, combining several historical studies of the ‘incorporation’ of the author in different sectors of the ‘creative industries’. The book’s subtitle, ‘Incorporating the Author’, astutely encompasses multiple meanings, whose implications the book works through. These include the author as an initiating participant in a larger economic structure (Chapter 3 (print publishing)). But also, the author as a bit player enveloped by a larger economic structure (Chapter 5 (film industry)). And the author (or performer) as an autonomous object of economic value (Chapters …


Ms. Attribution: How Authorship Credit Contributes To The Gender Gap, Jordana Goodman Jan 2022

Ms. Attribution: How Authorship Credit Contributes To The Gender Gap, Jordana Goodman

Faculty Scholarship

Misattribution plagues the practice of law in the United States. Seasoned practitioners and legislators alike will often claim full credit for joint work and, in some cases, for the entirety of a junior associate’s writing. The powerful over-credit themselves on legislation, opinions, and other legal works to the detriment of junior staff and associates. The ingrained and expected practice of leveraging junior attorneys as ghost-writers is, to many, unethical. But it presents a distinct concern that others have yet to interrogate: misattribution disparately impacts underrepresented members of the legal profession.

This Article fills that space by offering a quantitative analysis …


Investigating Design, Jessica Silbey, Mark P. Mckenna Jan 2022

Investigating Design, Jessica Silbey, Mark P. Mckenna

Faculty Scholarship

Design is ascendant. Steve Jobs’s legendary obsession with design was widely regarded as Apple’s comparative advantage, and that lesson has not been lost on its competitors. Design thinking is a growth industry, in business and at universities, and design professionals continue to take on increasingly significant roles within firms. The increasing economic significance of design has been reflected in an explosion of design patent applications and increasing amount of design litigation.

Despite design’s growing economic and legal importance, relatively little is known by legal scholars and policymakers about designers or the design process. This paper addresses that gap and is …


Games Without Frontiers: The Increasing Importance Of Intellectual Property Rights In The People’S Republic Of China, James M. Cooper Oct 2021

Games Without Frontiers: The Increasing Importance Of Intellectual Property Rights In The People’S Republic Of China, James M. Cooper

Faculty Scholarship

Intellectual property (“IP”) protection in the People's Republic of China has been murky and amorphous. The country is currently enjoying a historic era with significant infrastructure and investment projects occurring as the Chinese consumer society substantially expands. These simultaneous trends require that China commit to the securitization and protection of IP rights to sustain its rapid economic growth.


Trademark, Labor Law, And Antitrust, Oh My!, Jessica Silbey Sep 2021

Trademark, Labor Law, And Antitrust, Oh My!, Jessica Silbey

Faculty Scholarship

I am allergic to antitrust law, but after reading Hiba Hafiz’s recent article, I understand that my aversion is problematic. This paper combines an analysis of trademark law, labor law, and antitrust law to explain how employers exploit trademark law protections and defenses to control labor markets and underpay and under-protect workers. For most IP lawyers and professors, this article will open our minds to some collateral effects of trademark law’s consumer protection rationale on other areas of law with important consequences for economic and social policies.


Mark Of The Devil: The University As Brand Bully, James Boyle, Jennifer Jenkins Jan 2021

Mark Of The Devil: The University As Brand Bully, James Boyle, Jennifer Jenkins

Faculty Scholarship

In recent years, universities have been accused in news stories of becoming “trademark bullies,” entities that use their trademarks to harass and intimidate beyond what the law can reasonably be interpreted to allow. Universities have also intensified efforts to gain expansive new marks. The Ohio State University’s attempt to trademark the word “the” is probably the most notorious. There has also been criticism of universities’ attempts to use their trademarks to police clearly legal speech about their activities. But beyond provocative anecdotes, how can one assess whether a particular university is truly bullying, since there are entirely legitimate reasons for …


Conundra Of The Berne Convention Concept Of The Country Of Origin, Jane C. Ginsburg Jan 2021

Conundra Of The Berne Convention Concept Of The Country Of Origin, Jane C. Ginsburg

Faculty Scholarship

This essay explores one of the most important, but occasionally intractable, issues under the Berne Convention, the concept of Country of Origin. Article 5(4) of that treaty defines a work’s country of origin, but leaves out several situations, leaving those who interpret and apply the treaty without guidance in ascertaining the country of origin. I will call those situations the “Conundra of the country of origin,” and will explore two of them here. First, what is the country of origin of an unpublished work whose authors are nationals of different countries? Second, what is the country of origin of a …


Intellectual Property Through A Non-Western Lens: Patents In Islamic Law, Tabrez Y. Ebrahim Jan 2021

Intellectual Property Through A Non-Western Lens: Patents In Islamic Law, Tabrez Y. Ebrahim

Faculty Scholarship

The intersection of secular, Western intellectual property law and Islamic law is undertheorized in legal scholarship. Yet the nascent and developing non-Western law of one form of intellectual property—patents—in Islamic legal systems is profoundly important for transformational innovation and economic development initiatives of Muslim-majority countries that comprise nearly one-fifth of the world’s population.


Recent scholarship highlights the tensions of intellectual property in Islamic law because religious considerations in an Islamic society do not fully align with Western notions of patents. As Islamic legal systems have begun to embrace patents in recent decades, theories of patents have presented conceptual and theological …


Comment On Andy Warhol Found. For The Visual Arts, Inc. V. Goldsmith, 992 F.3d 99 (2d Cir. 2021), Jane C. Ginsburg Jan 2021

Comment On Andy Warhol Found. For The Visual Arts, Inc. V. Goldsmith, 992 F.3d 99 (2d Cir. 2021), Jane C. Ginsburg

Faculty Scholarship

The Second Circuit’s decision in Andy Warhol Foundation v. Goldsmith retreats both from its prior caselaw’s generous characterization of artistic reuse as “transformative,” and from the outcome-determinacy of a finding of “transformativeness.” The decision suggests both that courts may be applying a more critical understanding of what “transforms” copied content, and that courts may be reforming “transformative use” to reinvigorate the other statutory factors, particularly the inquiry into the impact of the use on the potential markets for or value of the copied work. The court also provided an important explanation of copyrightable authorship in photographs.

In addition to analyzing …


International Law Association's Guidelines On Intellectual Property And Private International Law ("Kyoto Guidelines"): Applicable Law, Marie-Elodie Ancel, Nicolas Binctin, Josef Drexl, Mireille Van Eechoud, Jane C. Ginsburg, Toshiyuki Kono, Gyooho Lee, Rita Matulionyte, Edouard Treppoz, Dário Moura Vicente Jan 2021

International Law Association's Guidelines On Intellectual Property And Private International Law ("Kyoto Guidelines"): Applicable Law, Marie-Elodie Ancel, Nicolas Binctin, Josef Drexl, Mireille Van Eechoud, Jane C. Ginsburg, Toshiyuki Kono, Gyooho Lee, Rita Matulionyte, Edouard Treppoz, Dário Moura Vicente

Faculty Scholarship

The chapter “Applicable Law” of the International Law Association’s Guidelines on In­tellectual Property and Private International Law (“Kyoto Guidelines”) provides principles on the choice of law in international intellectual property matters. The Guidelines confirm the traditional principle of the lex loci protectionis for the existence, transferabil­ity, scope and infringement of intellectual property rights. The law applicable to the initial ownership of registered rights is governed by the lex loci protec­tionis whereas the law of the closest connection is applied to determine the ownership of copyright. For contracts, freedom of choice is acknowledged. With regard to ubiquitous or multi-state infringement and …


We're All Pirates Now: Making Do In A Precarious Ip Ecosystem, Jessica Silbey Jan 2021

We're All Pirates Now: Making Do In A Precarious Ip Ecosystem, Jessica Silbey

Faculty Scholarship

Fifteen years after the Piracy Paradox explained how most anti-copying protection is unnecessary for a thriving fashion industry, we face another piracy paradox: with broader and stronger IP laws and a digital economy in which IP enforcement is more draconian than ever, what explains the ubiquity of everyday copying, sharing, re-making and re-mixing practices that are the life blood of the internet's expressive and innovative ecosystems? Drawing on empirical data from a decade of research, this short essay provides two examples of this "new piracy paradox": a legal regime that ostensibly punishes piracy in a culture in which it is …


Intellectual Property And Ethnography: A Qualitative Research Approach, Jessica Silbey Jan 2021

Intellectual Property And Ethnography: A Qualitative Research Approach, Jessica Silbey

Faculty Scholarship

This chapter describes the processes of and justifications for qualitative empirical research in intellectual property (IP) as compared to other research methods, such as quantitative empirical approaches and theoretical economic analyses of law. It provides examples of these research methods, explains the reasons for pursuing a qualitative approach, and details a qualitative research agenda in the context of intellectual property law, as well as a step-by-step method of data collection and data analysis.


Copyright And Parody: Touring The Certainties Of Intellectual Property And Restitution, Wendy J. Gordon Jan 2021

Copyright And Parody: Touring The Certainties Of Intellectual Property And Restitution, Wendy J. Gordon

Faculty Scholarship

The essay that follows examines the boundary between two sets of rules. The first set arises under the law of Restitution, particularly the rule that volunteers ordinarily need not be rewarded. (Another way to state this same Restitution rule is to say that the retention of benefit voluntarily conferred is ordinarily not "unjust enrichment".) The second set of rules are those of Intellectual Property law, which creates property in a special kind of volunteer. My argument is simply that the law of Restitution leads almost directly to the law of Intellectual Property, though the two areas are premised on diametrically …


Fixing Informational Asymmetry Through Trademark Search, Jessica Silbey Aug 2020

Fixing Informational Asymmetry Through Trademark Search, Jessica Silbey

Faculty Scholarship

I call this paper a “Levendowski special.” It follows the signature format of much of Professor Levendowski’s prior work which, as in the latest article, recruits a legal tool typically aimed at one set of problems for the purpose of cleverly addressing a different set of problems. Her past articles harnessed copyright law to “fix artificial intelligence’s implicit bias” (2018) and to “combat revenge porn.” (2014). This paper draws on Professor Levendowski’s expertise working in private practice as a trademark attorney to address the problem of surveillance technology opacity. It is a primer on how to investigate trademark …


Fair Use In Oracle: Proximate Cause At The Copyright/Patent Divide, Wendy J. Gordon Mar 2020

Fair Use In Oracle: Proximate Cause At The Copyright/Patent Divide, Wendy J. Gordon

Faculty Scholarship

In Oracle America, Inc. v. Google LLC, the Federal Circuit undermined copyright law’s deference to patent law and, in doing so, delivered a blow to both regimes. Copyright’s deference— including a historic refusal to enforce rights that might undermine the public’s liberty to copy unpatented inventions-- is a necessary part of preserving inventors’ willingness to accept the short duration, mandatory disclosure, and other stringent bargains demanded by patent law. Deference to patent law is also integral to copyright law’s interior architecture; copyright’s refusal to monopolize functional applications of creative work lowers the social costs that would otherwise be imposed by …


Copyright Exceptions Across Borders: Implementing The Marrakesh Treaty, Laurence R. Helfer, Molly K. Land, Ruth L. Okediji Jan 2020

Copyright Exceptions Across Borders: Implementing The Marrakesh Treaty, Laurence R. Helfer, Molly K. Land, Ruth L. Okediji

Faculty Scholarship

This article reviews state ratification and implementation of the Marrakesh Treaty since its conclusion in 2013. We find that most states have adhered closely to the Treaty’s text, thus creating a de facto global template of exceptions and limitations that has increasingly enabled individuals with print disabilities, libraries and schools to create accessible format copies and share them across borders. The article argues that the Marrakesh Treaty’s core innovation—mandatory exceptions to copyright to promote public welfare—together with consultations with a diverse range of stakeholders, may offer a model for harmonising human rights and IP in other contexts.


Foreign Contracts And U.S. Copyright Termination Rights: What Law Applies? – Comment, Richard Arnold, Jane C. Ginsburg Jan 2020

Foreign Contracts And U.S. Copyright Termination Rights: What Law Applies? – Comment, Richard Arnold, Jane C. Ginsburg

Faculty Scholarship

The U.S. Copyright Act gives authors the right to terminate assignments of copyrights in works other than works for hire executed on or after 1 January 1978 after 35 years, and to do so notwithstanding any agreement to the contrary. Given that agreements which are subject to the laws of other countries can assign U.S. copyrights, and purport to do so in perpetuity, U.S. law’s preclusion of agreements contrary to the author’s right to exercise her termination right can give rise to a difficult choice of law issue. Two recent cases which came before courts in the U.S. and England …


Intellectual Property Law And Redressive Autonomy, Shyamkrishna Balganesh Jan 2020

Intellectual Property Law And Redressive Autonomy, Shyamkrishna Balganesh

Faculty Scholarship

Intellectual property law remains a body of private law, but for reasons that transcend its reliance on ideas and concepts from the common law of property and tort. This essay argues that the connection between forms of intellectual property law and private law is rooted in a form of autonomy that characterizes private law regimes — known as “redressive autonomy.” It shows how a strong commitment to redressive autonomy undergirds the unique right–duty structure of intellectual property, informs intellectual property’s central doctrines, and injects an additional layer of normative complexity into its functioning.