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James Grimmelmann is a professor of law at Cornell Tech and Cornell Law School. He helps lawyers and technologists understand each other, applying ideas from computer science to problems in law and vice versa. He studies how laws regulating software affect freedom, wealth, and power. He writes about search engines, social networks, data havens, hackers, trolls, copyright-infringing robots, and magical 3D printers, among other things. He is the author of the casebook Internet Law: Cases and Problems, now in its fifth edition, and of over forty scholarly articles and essays.

He holds a J.D. from Yale Law School and an A.B. in Computer Science from Harvard College. After teaching at New York Law School, Georgetown, and the University of Maryland, he joined Cornell Tech in 2016.


Intellectual Property Law

Credits 3.0

This is a survey course in intellectual property (IP) law. It covers the what, when, who, how, and why of IP: what kinds of information can be protected, when these rights arise, who owns them, how they are enforced, and why the legal system goes to all this trouble. We will perform comparative anatomy on bodies of law including trade secret, patent, copyright, trademark, false advertising, and rights of publicity, dissecting them to understand them on their own terms and in relationship to each other. Students will be able to understand how each field of IP thinks about the world, to identify what kinds of information are and are not covered by different types of IP, and to advise creators, innovators, entrepreneurs, and citizens how to deal with IP assets and threats in a wide variety of technological settings. Although this course is suitable for those who have not previously taken a course in IP, it will not be redundant for those who have. Our goal will be to understand the deep structure of intellectual property law, not to memorize doctrinal details or debate abstract points of legal theory.