Past Events

Mar 3

The Location Tracking and Biometrics Conference will take place on Sunday, March 3 at Yale Law School. Judges, policymakers, practitioners, academics, and other experts will gather to consider what comes next after last year’s Supreme Court decision in U.S. v. Jones, about the constitutionality of GPS-tracking vehicles without a warrant. They will discuss various forms of location tracking and the implications of biometric identification.

This conference is jointly sponsored by the Information Society Project and NYU's Engelberg Center, and is supported by the Thomson Reuters Initiative on Law and Technology. For more information, contact


9-9:20 Technologies of Tracking: An Introduction

Christopher Soghoian

9:30-11:00 Panel 1: The Fourth Amendment and tracking after U.S. v. Jones

Panelists: Susan FreiwaldDavid GrayChief Judge Alex KozinskiPriscilla Smith

Moderated by Jameel Jaffer

11:00-11:20 Coffee

11:30-1:00 Panel 2: Cellular phones and mobile privacy: Government requests to carriers

Panelists: Kevin BankstonAl GidariStephanie PellJudge Stephen Smith

Moderated by Barton Gellman

1:00-2:30 Lunch

2:30-3:30 Panel 3: Cellular phones and mobile privacy: Direct government surveillance (Stingrays)

Panelists: Alan ButlerJudge Brian OwsleyChristopher Soghoian

Moderated by Jennifer Valentino-DeVries

3:30-3:45 Coffee

4:00-6:00 Panel 4: Nontrespassory tracking: Biometrics, license plate readers, and drones

Panelists: Alvaro BedoyaCatherine CrumpLaura K. DonohueRalph GrossTravis HallJennifer Lynch,Nabiha Syed

Moderated by Noah Shachtman

Register at

Feb 27

This week we will be joined by Robin Feldman, Professor of Law at UC Hastings, and Director of the Law and Bioscience Project. I believe there will be Thai food for lunch (thank you, Natasha).

Robin will be discussing her work-in-progress, "Intellectual Property Wrongs." Below is an abstract: 

Abstract: Currently, intellectual property rights are being used for purposes such as hiding embarrassing or illegal conduct, avoiding obligations, pressuring others into surrendering rights, harassing competitors, and engaging in complex anticompetitive schemes. This occurs because attributes of the intellectual property system allow rights holders to bargain for compensation beyond the value of the right—a process that is damaging innovation, creating dysfunction in markets, and wasting vast amounts of business and legal resources. What should we do when rights that we have created with such lofty goals and noble heart are diverted toward less admirable pursuits, that is, when intellectual property rights become the vehicles for intellectual property wrongs? 

For those who are interested, a copy of the paper can be downloaded at

Feb 28


Brain imaging technologies offer information about information. Specifically, they offer new windows (of varying transparency) into the human brain’s information-processing activities.

This talk addresses the interaction of brain imaging technologies with law. It will illustrate some of the rapidly developing capabilities by discussing experiments by our interdisciplinary team to discover patterns in brain activities during mock punishment decisions.


Owen D. Jones, a graduate of Yale Law School, is the New York Alumni Chancellor’s Professor of Law at Vanderbilt University, where he is also a Professor of Biological Sciences. He currently serves, in addition, as Director of the national Research Network on Law and Neuroscience (, funded by grants from the MacArthur Foundation.

His scholarship – both empirical and theoretical – bridges law, biology, and behavior. His work has been published in leading scientific journals, as well as in major law reviews, and has been covered in, among others, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and The Economist. Those interested in learning more, before the talk, about the intersection of law and neuroscience may wish to read “Brain Imaging for Legal Thinkers: A Guide for the Perplexed” (available for download at: or “Law and Neuroscience in the United States” (

Other works by Prof. Jones can be found here:

Feb 21


47 U.S.C. §230 provides a robust statutory immunity against website liability for user-generated content (UGC).  This Article justifies Section 230 by identifying a previously under-explored policy justification for the statute.  Section 230 helps websites generate non-public information about marketplace offerings and publish that information in ways that help consumers make better decisions.  As a result, 230 helps the marketplace’s “invisible hand” work more effectively—a crucial social benefit that could be easily lost by modifying the immunity. 


Eric Goldman is a Professor of Law and Director of the High Tech Law Institute at Santa Clara University School of Law.  Before he became a full-time academic in 2002, he practiced Internet law for 8 years in the Silicon Valley.  His research and teaching focuses on Internet, IP and advertising law topics, and he blogs on these topics at the Technology & Marketing Law Blog [] and the Tertium Quid blog at Forbes [].  In 2012, Managing IP magazine named him to a shortlist of North American “IP Thought Leaders,” and in 2011, he received the “IP Vanguard” award (in the academic/public policy category) from the California State Bar’s IP Section.