law Archives

  1. Summarizing “hacker legal education” crisply and cleanly

    James Grimmelman is a better writer than I am. I already knew this, but in this commentary on Biella Coleman’s (excellent) Coding Freedom, he captures something I have struggled to express for years in two crisp, clean sentences: Hacker legal education, with its roots in programming, is strong on formal precision and textual exegesis. But…

  2. Thoughts on the CC Summit

    Oliver's Tattoo (cropped), by Oliver Keyes, used under CC BY-SA

    I was lucky enough to attend the Creative Commons Global Summit in Buenos Aires last week, including the pre-conference session on copyright reform. Like Wikimania, there is simply too much here to summarize in coherent chunks, so here are my motes and thoughts during my return flight: Maira Sutton of EFF summed up my strongest…

  3. At the Wikimedia Foundation (for, um, three months now)

    Wikimania 2012 Group Photograph, by Helpameout, under CC-BY-SA 3.0, available from https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Wikimania_2012_Group_Photograph-0001.jpg

    Since it was founded 12 years ago this week, Wikipedia has become an indispensable part of the world’s information infrastructure. It’s a kind of public utility: You turn on the faucet and water comes out; you do an Internet search and Wikipedia answers your question. People don’t think much about who creates it, but you…

  4. Pushing back against licensing and the permission culture

    tl;dr: the open license ecosystem assumes that sharing can’t (or even shouldn’t) happen without explicit permission in the form of licenses. What if “post open source” is an implicit critique of that assumption – saying, in essence, “I reject the permission culture”? If so, license authors might want to consider creating options that enable people…

  5. Licensing confusion is great! (for lawyers)

    I want to heartily unendorse Simon Phipps’ Infoworld article about Github and licensing. Simon’s article makes it sound like no one benefits from sloppy licensing practices, and that is simply not true. Specifically, lawyers benefit! I regularly get calls from clients saying “I have no idea if I’m allowed to use <project X>, because it…

  6. Thanking Contributors by Printing the MPL

    The dino head, hand-colored.

    As part of a general drive to get rid of stuff, I’ve recently become increasingly willing to part with my old books. This has been a painful process – books have many happy memories for me – but I think also a good and focusing one. As part of my emotional reaction to this, I’ve…

  7. A Quick Note on Conspicuous Text, also known as ALL CAPS

    A copy of the MPL with yellow text instead of ALL CAPS.

    [Quick followup: (1) Matthew Butterick, of Typography for Lawyers fame, has added a thoughtful comment that anyone reading the post should read; and (2) to be clear, nothing here is my original work or thought - it's all a convenient, collect-in-one-place paraphrase of ideas from the excellent Manual of Style for Contract Drafting and Typography…