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Articles 1 - 11 of 11

Full-Text Articles in Law

Mere Conduit, David G. Carlson Oct 2019

Mere Conduit, David G. Carlson

Articles

"Mere conduit" is a legal fiction in fraudulent transfer and other avoidance cases. This article argues that the legal fiction is misleading, unnecessary and rendered obsolete by the Supreme Court's recent opinion in Merit Management Group v. FTI Consulting, Inc. (2018). The article further contends that a huge majority of leading cases confound fraudulent transfer law with the law of corporate theft. This error leads to depriving financial intermediaries of their opportunity to avoid liability on the ground of being bona fide transferees for value. Finally, courts often mistake banks as initial transferees of fraudulent transfers (absolutely liable in spite …


Are Literary Agents (Really) Fiduciaries?, Jacqueline Lipton Jul 2019

Are Literary Agents (Really) Fiduciaries?, Jacqueline Lipton

Articles

2018 was a big year for “bad agents” in the publishing world. In July, children’s literature agent Danielle Smith was exposed for lying to her clients about submissions and publication offers. In December, major literary agency Donadio & Olson, which represented a number of bestselling authors, including Chuck Palahnuik (Fight Club), filed for bankruptcy in the wake of an accounting scandal involving their bookkeeper, Darin Webb. Webb had embezzled over $3 million of client funds. Around the same time, Australian literary agent Selwa Anthony lost a battle in the New South Wales Supreme Court involving royalties she owed to her …


Contracts Mattered As Much As Copyrights, Robert W. Gomulkiewicz Jan 2019

Contracts Mattered As Much As Copyrights, Robert W. Gomulkiewicz

Articles

Scholars have begun to appreciate the fundamental role that contracts played in the development of copyrights. Contracts gave copyrights vitalilty. This article explores the network of book publishing contracts that formed the legal infrastructure for a pre-modern “internet” at the dawn of copyright law in Great Britain in the eighteenth century. Drawing on insights from archival research, the article shows how this network of copyright contracts advanced an important goal of copyright: the spread of ideas and information throughout all parts of society. Appreciating the historical significance of copyright contracts provides valuable context for modern debates about copyright policy. Indeed, …


The Past, Present And Future Of The Cisg (And Other Uniform Commercial Code Law Initiatives), Harry Flechtner Jan 2019

The Past, Present And Future Of The Cisg (And Other Uniform Commercial Code Law Initiatives), Harry Flechtner

Articles

As the keynote speaker of the Spring 2019 CISG Conference, Harry M. Flechtner, Professor Emeritus, University of Pittsburgh School of Law, candidly shares his perspectives on the development and progress of the Convention on the International Sale of Goods (CISG) through the years. He begins with his initial introduction to the convention and then reflects upon several important issues and challenges facing the CISG, particularly involving uniform international law initiatives. Professor Flechtner looks hard at what's working and what's not and with a critical eye he draws attention to crucial matters yet to be resolved. While his perspective is light …


Ostrom Amongst The Machines: Blockchain As A Knowledge Commons, Herminio Bodon, Pedro Bustamante, Marcela Gomez, Prashabnt Krishnamurthy, Michael J. Madison, Ilia Murtazashvili, Jennifer Brick Murtazashvili, Tymofiy Mylovanov, Martin B. H. Weiss Jan 2019

Ostrom Amongst The Machines: Blockchain As A Knowledge Commons, Herminio Bodon, Pedro Bustamante, Marcela Gomez, Prashabnt Krishnamurthy, Michael J. Madison, Ilia Murtazashvili, Jennifer Brick Murtazashvili, Tymofiy Mylovanov, Martin B. H. Weiss

Articles

Blockchains are distributed ledger technologies that allow the recording of any data structure, including money, property titles, and contracts. In this paper, we suggest that Hayekian political economy is especially well suited to explain how blockchain emerged, but that Elinor Ostrom’s approach to commons governance is particularly useful to understand why blockchain anarchy is successful. Our central conclusions are that the blockchain can be thought of as a spontaneous order, as Hayek anticipated, as well as a knowledge commons, as Ostrom’s studies of self-governance anticipated.


The Private Law Critique Of International Investment Law, Julian Arato Jan 2019

The Private Law Critique Of International Investment Law, Julian Arato

Articles

This Article argues that investment treaties subtly constrain how nations organize their internal systems of private law, including laws of property, contracts, corporations, and intellectual property. Problematically, the treaties do so on a one-size-fits-all basis, disregarding the wide variation in values reflected in these domestic legal institutions. Investor-state dispute settlement exacerbates this tension, further distorting national private law arrangements. This hidden aspect of the system produces inefficiency, unfairness, and distributional inequities that have eluded the regime's critics and apologists alike.


Is Blockchain The Next Step In The Evolution Chain Of [Market] Intermediaries?, Marcela Gomez, Pedro Bustamante, Martin B. H. Weiss, Ilia Murtazashvili, Michael J. Madison, Wilson Law, Tymofiy Mylovanov, Herminio Bodon, Prashabnt Krishnamurthy Jan 2019

Is Blockchain The Next Step In The Evolution Chain Of [Market] Intermediaries?, Marcela Gomez, Pedro Bustamante, Martin B. H. Weiss, Ilia Murtazashvili, Michael J. Madison, Wilson Law, Tymofiy Mylovanov, Herminio Bodon, Prashabnt Krishnamurthy

Articles

The blockchain is a decentralized solution for handling transactions where we are concerned (among other aspects) with the accuracy and verification of transactions. One of its main promises is to eliminate the need for centralized entities or intermediaries and legal enforcement. Rather than trusting self-interested human intermediaries, the blockchain provides an alternative that relies on transparent computational protocols (Werbach 2018).

In this paper, we delve into this broker-less claim and analyze whether the blockchain needs an intermediary to allow for widespread access to its functionality and whether the blockchain itself is an intermediary. The latter would turn the blockchain into …


No-Hire Provisions In Mcdonald's Franchise Agreements, An Antitrust Violations Or Evidence Of Joint Employer?, Andrele Brutus St. Val Jan 2019

No-Hire Provisions In Mcdonald's Franchise Agreements, An Antitrust Violations Or Evidence Of Joint Employer?, Andrele Brutus St. Val

Articles

As the archetypical franchisor and industry leader, McDonald’s has come under much public and legal scrutiny in recent years for its business practices and its effects on low-wage and unskilled employees. Its no hire provision—which is a term included in its franchise agreements with franchisees that bars franchisees from hiring each others employees—has been found by economist to suppress wages and stagnate growth. This provision is being challenged under antitrust law while its employment practices are being disputed under labor law. McDonald’s is defending its business practices by presenting two seemingly contradictory defenses. This article explores how McDonald’s position in …


The Cisg: Applicable Law And Applicable Forums, Ronald A. Brand Jan 2019

The Cisg: Applicable Law And Applicable Forums, Ronald A. Brand

Articles

Despite being in effect for over thirty years, a debate continues on whether the United Nations Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods (CISG) has been a success. With 89 Contracting States, it clearly is widely accepted. At the same time, empirical studies show that private parties regularly opt out of its application. It has served as a model for domestic sales law, and as an important educational tool. But has it been a success? In this article I consider that question, and suggests that the scorecard is not yet complete; and that it will perhaps take significantly …


Harry Flechtner--A True Teacher/Scholar, With Rhythm, Ronald A. Brand Jan 2019

Harry Flechtner--A True Teacher/Scholar, With Rhythm, Ronald A. Brand

Articles

This is a tribute to Professor Emeritus Harry Flechtner upon his retirement from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. Professor Flechtner was a leading scholar on the United Nations Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods (CISG), a stellar teacher, a musician who used that skill in the classroom as well as the Vienna Konzerthaus, and a genuinely nice person.


Online Dispute Resolution, Ronald A. Brand Jan 2019

Online Dispute Resolution, Ronald A. Brand

Articles

This chapter was prepared from a presentation given by the author at the 2019 Summer School in Transnational Commercial Law & Technology, jointly sponsored by the University of Verona School of Law and the Center for International Legal Education (CILE) of the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. In the paper, I review online dispute resolution (ODR) by considering the following five questions, which I believe help to develop a better understanding of both the concept and the legal framework surrounding it:

A. What is ODR?

B. Who does ODR?

C. What is the legal framework for ODR?

D. What …