Law Schedule of Classes

NOTE: Course offerings change. Classes offered this semester may not be offered in future semesters.

276.33 sec. 001 - Regulating Internet Platforms (Fall 2020)

Instructor: Pamela Samuelson  (view instructor's teaching evaluations - degree students only | profile)
View all teaching evaluations for this course - degree students only

Units: 1
Grading Designation: Credit Only

Due to COVID-19, this class is remote for Fall 2020.
Mode of Instruction: Remote Instruction


Tu 3:35 PM - 5:25 PM
Location: Internet/Online
From August 18, 2020
To November 10, 2020

Course Start: August 18, 2020
Course End: November 10, 2020
Class Number (1Ls): 34337

Enrollment info:
Enrolled: 9
Waitlisted: 0
Enroll Limit: 11
As of: 12/07 09:41 AM

In the mid-1990s, Congress passed two laws that limited the liability of online service providers (OPSs) for unlawful acts of their users. In enacting § 230 of the Communications Decency Act, Congress hoped to encourage OSPs to engage in content moderation by immunizing them from liability for wrongful acts by users such as defamation, hate speech, and privacy violations. Congress took a different approach when it came to copyright infringement by users. Under the safe harbors of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, OSPs are obliged to take down user-uploaded infringements upon receiving notice from the works' copyright owners. Both laws have fostered incredible growth of the Internet economy. But both laws are under siege now because of the proliferation of online wrongdoing. Proposed legislation would significantly alter these rules.

This course will consider, among other things, some First Amendment limits on what the government can do to regulate speech that takes place on online platforms. Can the government require Facebook to stop disinformation campaigns? Can President Trump order other government agencies to require platforms to be neutral or stop censoring some critics? Will private initiatives such as the Facebook Oversight Board mitigate content moderation problems? Will modifying the DMCA safe harbors reduce copyright infringement? These are examples of the questions we will have a chance to address in this course.

This course meets every other week for 7 sessions beginning Tuesday August 18th.

This class is among the special Fall 2020 1L elective seminars designed to give entering 1Ls an extra opportunity to form connections despite our remote form of interaction. In light of that goal, these classes will expect real-time attendance and may not be recorded. These classes will all be graded on a Credit/No Credit basis and total written work requirement will be no more than 8 double-spaced pages.

This course is only open to 1Ls.

Exam Notes: (None) Class requires a series of papers, assignments, or presentations throughout the semester
Course Category: Intellectual Property and Technology Law
This course is listed in the following sub-categories:
First Year Courses
Public Law and Policy

If you are the instructor or their FSU, you may add a file like a syllabus or a first assignment to this page.

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Required Books are in blue

  • The Twenty-Six Words That Created the Internet
    Jeff Kosseff
    Edition: 2019
    Publisher: Cornell University Press
    ISBN: 9781501735783
    e-Book: Yes
    e-Book procurement note:
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: $26.95
    Price Source: user provided

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