About the Cyberlaw Clinic

Harvard Law School‘s Cyberlaw Clinic, based at Harvard’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society, provides high-quality, pro-bono legal services to appropriate clients on issues relating to the Internet, technology, and intellectual property. Students enhance their preparation for high-tech practice and earn course credit by working on real-world litigation, client counseling, advocacy, and transactional / licensing projects and cases. The Clinic strives to help clients achieve success in their activities online, mindful of (and in response to) existing law. The Clinic also works with clients to shape the law’s development through policy and advocacy efforts. The Cyberlaw Clinic was the first of its kind, and it continues its tradition of innovation in its areas of practice. The Clinic works independently, with law students supervised by experienced and licensed attorneys.  In some cases, the Clinic collaborates with counsel throughout the country to take advantage of regional or substantive legal expertise.

From the Blog

D.C. Circuit Reverses Lower Court re: Copyright in Laws and Codes

We previously reported about the Clinic’s amicus advocacy in a pair of cases concerning copyrights in legal standards and model codes incorporated into law. We are pleased to report that the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit issued a ruling yesterday in favor of Public.Resource.Org, the organization that we supported (on behalf of two different groups of amici) in the district and circuit courts.  

Clinic Supports Pakistani NGO in Shaping New Data Protection Bill

This month, Pakistan’s Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication released a draft Personal Data Protection Bill for public comment. The bill has a wide scope, encompassing at a basic level the commercial usage of data from which an individual is identifiable, and creates a key role for user consent. While not without areas for possible improvement, the bill represents a positive step for Pakistan’s internet-connected populace. With support from Cyberlaw Clinic, the Digital Rights Foundation (DRF), a Pakistani NGO that works in support of human rights and democratic processes online, submitted a policy brief to the Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication while the initial drafting of the bill was underway. DRF founder Nighat Dad said, “Working with the Harvard Cyberlaw Clinic was a unique experience, both personally and professionally… I believe that such platforms add indispensable value to the global advocacy endeavours and tremendously help in successful attempts at making the internet more inclusive and approachable.”


American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois v. Anita Alvarez

AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION OF ILLINOIS v. ANITA ALVAREZ  |  No. 11-1286  | 7th Cir. April 22, 2011  |  This Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press prepared this amicus brief (pdf) with support from the Cyberlaw Clinic.  The brief was submitted to Seventh Circuit on behalf of American Society of News Editors, Association of Capitol Reporters and Editors, Citizen Media Law Project, National Press Photographers Association, Radio Television Digital News Association, Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press and Society of Professional Journalists.  Amici challenged the Illinois Eavesdropping Act, arguing that it is so broad that it inhibits the basic right to gather information.  The brief presented many of the arguments set forth in the Clinic’s Glik amicus brief, submitted to the First Circuit in January 2011.