FAA Needs to Enact Stricter Drone Laws

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is responsible for regulating the skies and keeping passengers who fly safe from dangerous aircrafts, flying conditions, and air traffic, amongst other things. Yet, the FAA continues to allow the unregulated use of drones regardless of the inherent risks involved. Stricter regulations are desperately needed to prevent accidents, confrontations, and harm to property.

Drones are creating problems all across the country. This August, California firefighters responding to a forest fire were forced to ground their helicopters that were on a mission to put out forest fires due to interference from drones filming the scene.1 In a similar incident, drones flew within 100 feet of two commercial airliners approaching John F. Kennedy airport.2 The pilots reported that the drones were flying at an altitude of about 800 to 900 feet, heights well above new regulations that make it illegal to fly drones above 400 feet or within 5 miles of an airport.3 The JFK airport incident was not an isolated event. The FAA reported that drone sightings by pilots had nearly tripled from 238 in 2014 to 650 this year so far. Some of these drones were reported to be flying at heights of up to 10,000 feet, pilots reported.4 It is clear from these reports that many drone operators are not following current regulations. The FAA should consider alternate approaches to drone regulation such as mandating a safety feature that makes it impossible to fly above 400 feet. Drone owners should also be required to register their drones and equip their drones with identifying transponders. With over 1 million drones in the United States, the FAA needs to have more control over when and where these aircrafts are flying.5 While tiny birds can bring down commercial airplanes, who knows what could happen when a drone gets too close to a plane’s engine?

In addition to safety issues, drones have also been creating privacy concerns. In August, a Kentucky man was charged with wanton endangerment and criminal mischief for shooting down a drone that was hovering in his backyard near where his 16 year-old daughter was laying out by their pool.6 Similarly, a New Jersey man was arrested for allegedly firing at a drone hovering near his home five times with a shotgun.7 Because of the lack of regulation, homeowners feel like they are forced to take matters into their own hands to protect their families and property from aerial trespassers. Some townships, such as Long Beach Township in New Jersey, have enacted their own laws, banning recreational drones along the 12 miles of beachfront in an effort to protect the privacy of beachgoers.8

As drone technology develops further and become cheaper, more drone hobbyists will emerge. The time has come for the FAA to enact mandatory safety features onto drones and enforce stricter drone laws. It is up to the FAA, not local towns or homeowners with guns, to fix the very real problem of uncontrolled drone use in our country.

Technologizing Industries: How Technological Developments Impact Manual Labor and Service Jobs

After years of developing models and formulas to predict the future, the most brilliant scientists have been bested by Hollywood’s most creative. From creating television shows like The Jetsons, to films like I, Robot, writers and directors have already predicted the future.

In The Jetsons, which premiered in the early 1960s, George Jetson works a grueling two-hour workday1 making machine parts that are vital to the computer-automated society in which he lives. In I, Robot, which premiered forty years after The Jetsons, in 2004, robots work alongside humans — assisting them in their daily lives.2 Despite their forty-year difference, the idea that humans will heavily rely on computers has not changed.

In the United States, the Fair Labor Standards Act “establishes minimum wage, overtime pay, recordkeeping, and youth employment standards.”3 Labor regulations that protect workers often increase labor costs for businesses because employers must pay their employees a minimum wage. While businesses, globally, have substituted manual labor jobs for machines, China has pushed the frontier further by moving to replace part of its labor force with industrial robots to combat rising labor costs and increase profits.4 Ironically, displaced laborers may find themselves in robotic manufacturing and assembly, like George Jetson. Employees of manual labor industries are not the only ones at risk, however; service industries, like the legal field are in danger of downsizing too.

With the development of artificial intelligence, like that of IBM’s new TrueNorth chips, which “behave like neurons — the basic building blocks of biological brains,”5 it is only a matter of time until computers will complete tasks that only humans are currently capable of performing.

Supercomputers, like IBM’s Watson, have analytical and searching abilities that would turn into an entry-level attorney’s worst nightmare if the computer had an algorithm for operating legal databases and writing drafts of memos and briefs.6

Should attorneys have anything to fear? Instead of spending hours drafting briefs and memos, attorneys will be able to take basic drafts made from computer programs and edit them to perfection. Even if a computer can tailor the brief or memo,7 it is unlikely the computer will be able to assess the arguments’ strength and organize them accordingly. Although attorneys will have more time to spend on other projects, they will have to bill less hours for service. The billing requirements may even change at firms because of the software’s efficiency. The nature of client-attorney relationships, however, will likely stay the same because attorneys will still provide a human element to their customer service, like counseling and support.

As horrific as these technological developments sound for some attorneys, consumers who could not previously afford representation will be more likely to retain counsel. Moreover, attorneys who may become displaced in areas like e-Discovery could find themselves practicing in Alternate Dispute Resolution or entering the Judiciary, where human judgment is essential.

Militarizing Nanotechnology

The ever-expanding field of nanotechnology has begun to spill over into some dangerous territory. Given the enormous defense budget allocated to the United States military and its related programs, in conjunction with nanotechnology’s cost-cutting tendencies, military officials are salivating over its prospects. Specifically, this technology has been instrumental in evolving weaponry into dangerously compact, resourceful gadgets. In turn, American citizens should be alarmed because this will, undoubtedly, transform the manner in which domestic surveillance is conducted; will prompt a new breed of nanotechnology-based arms races; and may be a precursor to deadly biological weaponry.

The American government has already proclaimed a blanket distrust of her populace by planting surveillance devices in cities around the country. Currently, surveillance technology identifies vehicle crossing an intersections, monitors many sections of urban environments, and, worst of all, the elected officials have continually authorized the federal government to discard Fourth Amendment protections and spy on American citizens through the USA PATRIOT Act. Hiding under the guise of “security,” the American government has destroyed the concept of privacy and has become intimately involved in citizens’ daily personal lives. As it exists currently, “the subject and unwitting sender is the target of the surveillance and the receivers are the police.”1 Already resembling what has the feel of a police state, the enhanced surveillance prospects inherent in nanotechnology and its advancements possess the potential to drive a stake through the heart of privacy. Moreover, other countries will inevitably attempt to mimic the successes, creating a new breed of arms race.

The inevitable progression inherent in technological advancement all but guarantees the replication of nanotechnology and its potentials into an arms race. The American military has already conducted successful experimentation implementing nanotechnology into a drone format. Essentially, “we’re continuing to fuel a drone arms race that guarantees widespread proliferation.”2 Since the invasion of Iraq in 2003, drone technology has exploded, creating a battlefield consisting of backpack sized killing machines. Nanotechnology threatens to shrink drones to the size (and shape) of insects, and “response to advancing technologies will undoubtedly affect the conduct of hostilities on the future battlefield.”3 This technology, additionally, has the capability to uniquely circumnavigate international treaties that address battlefield conduct.

A potential loophole to the countless international treaties concerning nuclear non-proliferation, chemical, and biological warfare lurks inside nanotechnologies. Whereas biological warfare treaties prevent the usage of agents that could cross borders and annihilate populations, nanotechnology is capable of unleashing swarms of killer drones cloaked as, for example, bees. The current treaties “may prove insufficient to prevent proliferation, and we should not shy away from new international treaties as necessary.”4 Nanotechnology in bee-sized drones would, ultimately, constitute a more sophisticated drone for which no international treaty exists. Of course, this is because technology advances more rapidly than peaceful agreements among civilized nations. The open window of technological advancement creates uncontrolled, dangerous advances in military weaponry.

Overall, the current state of domestic surveillance is a host of egregious constitutional violations. If nanotechnology is allowed to wed itself to military programs, the explosion in surveillance, both domestically and internationally, threatens the stability of the American nation. Furthermore, the inevitable transition of nanotechnology into military weaponry will destabilize entire nations as a new form of an arms race is born. A worthwhile solution is a deeper investigation into the world of nanotechnology and military use and international treaties banning this technology in weapons creation.

Facebook Freebooting: Oops, Charlie Pirated My Video

To escape the graveyard of social media wash-ups, Facebook, the declining social media giant,1 has set its sights on YouTube with the emergence of the Facebook video player,2 sharing four billion views daily.3 While this may satisfy our desire for rapid content, an increase in “freebooting” has plagued the Facebook video player, where viral videos are taken from sites such as YouTube and re-uploaded illegally through Facebook’s video player.4 Essentially, the owners of these freebooted videos are missing out on valuable profits, advertisements and publicity that encompass the six billion dollar online video industry.5 In a display of poetic justice, YouTube had previously grown its own video service through freebooting and faced the harsh legal repercussions in a seven-year battle with media giant, Viacom.6

Viacom’s 2007 lawsuit against Google, YouTube’s parent company, claimed that YouTube had directly infringed on copyrighted content from Viacom-owned networks such as Comedy Central.7 YouTube survived monetary or injunctive relief based on the safe harbor provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”) because YouTube acted expeditiously to remove and disable 100,000 Viacom videos upon receiving notice.8  Viacom then argued that YouTube willfully allowed copyrighted material to foster on their site, to which the District Court interpreted the DMCA as placing the burden on the copyright owner to identify and notify YouTube of the infringing material, as it would be unreasonable for a service provider to keep track of a site’s entire content library.9

While Facebook can easily learn from the mistakes of YouTube and implement a content ID system,10 the legal incentive is nominal. Facebook can continue to grow their Facebook player and remain protected under the safe harbor provisions of the DMCA, contingent on removing copyrighted material once notified by the original owner. Furthermore, since the burden falls on the owner to provide sufficient information of the infringing material, Facebook would legally and financially benefit by turning a blind eye and forcing users to navigate the millions of videos in search of their pirated property. Of course while YouTube had won its legal battle against Viacom, YouTube’s 100 million dollars in legal fees and one billion in settlement should have Marc Zuckerberg rethinking his cat and mouse game of copyright infringement, as that cat may turn out to be a lion.11

Sharing With Friends: Facebook Privacy

As our society is now living in the so-called “Internet-age,” courts have struggled to adapt traditional principles of privacy law under the Constitution to the modern, vacillating idea of social media. In a 2012 case, United States v. Meregildo the District Court for the Southern District of New York held that where Facebook privacy settings allow viewership of postings by “friends,” the Government may access them through a cooperating witness who is a “friend” without violating the Fourth Amendment.1 The court reasoned that while the defendant “undoubtedly believed that his Facebook profile would not be shared with law enforcement, he had no justifiable expectation that his “friends” would keep his profile private.”2 Access to the defendant’s Facebook profile formed the core of the Government’s evidence of probable cause supporting its application for the search warrant.3

In a unanimous decision authored by Judge Denny Chin for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, the three-judge court affirmed the lower court’s ruling to admit the evidence.4 In his four-page scant opinion, Judge Pauley diametrically shifts the course of what could have been a-new-age workable Fourth Amendment jurisprudence. Despite the fact that the government sought out and obtained a warrant, rather than subpoenaing Facebook for the information,5 this type of intrusion should still be considered in contravention of the Fourth Amendment. The fact that the defendant took the initiative and consciously placed safeguards on his information in the form of privacy settings shows that he did indeed have an expectation of privacy and, in light of the era we live in, a reasonable one at that.6 Further, by taking affirmative actions to add privacy settings, the defendant clearly intended to preserve his information as private.

Given the rapid increase and dependency of younger generations upon social media networks, such as Facebook, a new challenge has arose in defining a “reasonable” right of privacy under the Fourth Amendment. Left open are many questions including: how do privacy settings and restriction to access of information interplay with one’s expectation of privacy on their Facebook? Whether or not the outcome of this case would have been different had the government had no informant and instead initiated the “friending” of the defendant? Does this fear of government access to social media pages chill speech in violation of the First Amendment? Until the elements of privacy settings in social media are further clearly defined, beware what you post, your “private” information may not be so private.

Uber, Procedurally Successful Against Taxi-Cabs, Should Start Thinking of Substantive Arguments to Succeed on the Merits

Uber, a smartphone “app”,1 is noticeably changing the transportation landscape not just in the United States, but globally as well. Similar to a temp agency that connects employers and employees, Uber “[is] seamlessly connecting riders to drivers through [their] app.”2 Potential customers download the app to their phone, create an account, and within minutes can arrange for a driver to pick them up at virtually any location and drive them anywhere they want. The price is a pre-agreed upon fee preceding the acceptance of the ride. The fee for an uberX car is calculated by summing a base rate, a per minute rate, and per mile rate.3 In New Jersey, the base rate is $1.25, the per minute rate is $0.18, and the per mile rate is $1.10.4

However, like any innovation that alters or enhances the status quo, Uber is facing opposition in several jurisdictions. Who is opposing this innovative advancement? The very people that are being displaced and are unwilling to adapt to the changing transportation landscape.

Taxi-cab and limousine services in the United State and in the European Union have filed lawsuits against Uber. In addition, both state governments in the United States and foreign governments have enacted legislation requiring that Uber halt, limit, or modify operations. Wisconsin, however, is in the minority and has loosened restrictions against Uber and Uber’s counterpart, Lyft, Inc.5

One of the most recent lawsuits adjudicated against Uber is Greenwich Taxi, Inc. v. Uber Technologies, Inc.;6 thirteen separate taxicab, limousine, or livery services are listed as plaintiffs in that case. The plaintiffs alleged that Uber was in violation of several provisions of the Lanham Act because they misrepresented their services;7 that Uber is in violation of the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act (“CUTPA”) because they “engaged in unfair and deceptive trade practices”;8 that Uber intentionally interfered with contractual relationships;9 and that Uber has violated several provisions of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization Act (“RICO”).10 In their complaint, the plaintiffs requested treble damages, a temporary restraining order, preliminary injunctive relief, and permanent injunctive relief.11

Uber filed a motion to dismiss plaintiffs’ complaint in its entirety.12 When a district court is deciding a defendant’s motion to dismiss pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6), “the court must accept as true all factual allegations in the complaint and must draw inferences in a light most favorable to the plaintiff.”13 Generally, in federal court, a plaintiff’s must plead “only enough facts to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.”14 However, “a plaintiff’s obligation to provide the ‘grounds’ of his ‘entitle[ment] to relief’ requires more than labels and conclusions, and a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not do.”15 Moreover, “nor does a complaint suffice if it tenders naked assertions devoid of further factual enhancement.”16

However, when pleading a violation of RICO, “a plaintiff must show: (1) a violation of the RICO statute, 18 U.S.C. § 1962; (2) an injury to business or property; and (3) that the injury was caused by the violation of Section 1962.”17 A plaintiff establishes that they have a substantive RICO claim by showing the defendant has “a pattern of racketeering activity.”18

Greenwich Taxi Inc. et al. alleged that Uber’s RICO violation is in the form of wire fraud. Accordingly, Greenwich Taxi Inc. must show predicate fraudulent communications. Thus, Greenwich Taxi is subject to heightened pleading requirements of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 9(b).”19 In addition to meeting the heightened pleading standards, “the plaintiffs must ‘provide some minimal factual basis for conclusory allegations of scienter that give rise to a strong inference of fraudulent intent.’”20

Judge Thompson ultimately granted Uber’s motion to dismiss; however, he also granted plaintiffs’ request to amend their complaint to conform to the requisite pleading requirements.21 Likewise, District Judge Gorton, in a similar lawsuit against Uber in the District of Massachusetts, dismissed several of a taxi-cab’s complaints against Uber, multiple of which were also RICO violation claims.22 However, like in Greenwich Taxi Inc., they were dismissed without prejudice.23 Although Uber has had several procedural victories, they should begin crafting arguments to also successfully obtain a final judgment.

One Nation, Under Drones

It is estimated that over half a million drones were sold in 2014.1 That number is expected to significantly increase for 2015.2 As more individuals gain access to drones, more uses, questions, and concerns arise regarding drone use. Restaurants use drones to broadcast promotions;3 managers use drones to monitor progress of construction projects (but not to monitor employees, apparently);4 and every day people use drones to garner YouTube views.5 There are many ways to use drones but very few laws regulating them.

Recently, however, North Dakota passed legislation that would allow police to equip drones with non-lethal weapons such as Tasers, pepper spray, tear gas, bean bag cannons, and various other weapons – adding to the list of ways drones can be used.6 What actually started as an effort to prevent law enforcement from utilizing drones for surveillance of private property without a warrant ended with legislation that now allows police in North Dakota to equip drones with various non-lethal weapons.7 In addition, the drones would be allowed to fly up to 1,200 feet in civilian airspace, as opposed to the standard 400 feet limit.8

These developments in North Dakota are likely to spread to other states. Supporters of the bill applaud its willingness to provide law enforcement with the necessary resources to serve and protect.9 The supporters believe that those who have nothing to hide and have done nothing illegal will have nothing to worry about. They also believe that the use of weaponized drones creates a safer environment for police officers and for the public.10 Opponents of the legislation do not believe the developing situation is that simple. They point to the legal and ethical ramifications of such legislation. Opponents of the legislation worry that removal of individuals from the circumstances will lead to trigger-happy individuals sitting behind computer screens, miles away.11 Another prevalent concern with weaponized flying drones, and flying drones in general, is the worry that they may invade individual privacy rights and violate the Bill of Rights.12

Lastly, what is to prevent private individuals from using drones in a deceptive manner by pretending to be law enforcement? Although there is nothing stopping individuals from impersonating police officers, the amount of effort and resources required, and the likelihood of getting caught, prevents them from doing so. However, flying a deceptive drone from a remote location, pretending to be law enforcement appears to be much easier, and “safer” for potential imposters than the traditional alternative.

Rather than developing legislation to regulate the current uses of drones, the North Dakota legislature has opted, instead, to add to the long list of potential uses. This area of law is likely to change and expand exponentially in the coming months and years and any new developments will have to be followed very closely as they will have a lasting impact on laws regulating and promoting drone use.

Mind Your Business: The Big Data Debate

On February 27th, 2015, the Rutgers Computer & Technology Law Journal, in conjunction with the Rutgers Institute for Professional Education, are hosting “Mind Your Business: The Big Data Debate.” Business experts, legal practitioners, legislators and representatives of the advocacy community, as well as U.S. Federal Trade Commissioner Julie Brill will focus on how businesses use big data and whether the legal system should regulate the practices currently in use.

Second Annual Alumni Reception

alumni1

On October 23rd, 2014, the Rutgers Computer and Technology Law Journal hosted its Second Annual Alumni Reception. The Journal has a long and rich history dating back to 1969 – that’s one of the oldest networks in Rutgers Law School – Newark history! Over the years, this has translated into a large alumni network that includes dozens of partners in major law firms, law school Deans, and entrepreneurs who have started their own private practices. The importance of bringing all of these excellent individuals together to celebrate RCTLJ’s Alumni network simply cannot be stated enough.

rctlj_alumni2The Rutgers Computer & Technology Law Journal would like to give a very special thanks to our Managing Projects Editor, Meredith Doherty, whose incredible vision and leadership orchestrated the entire event, and thank you to all of the Alumni who attended!

 

RCTLJ Symposium 2014 – Are All Bytes Created Equal? The Battle Over Net Neutrality

netneutrality poster_no sponsors

What is net neutrality?
Net Neutrality is a concept that says the Internet should be free and open: users should have unfettered access to any service or application on the Internet, and the company operating the pipes that connect a user to the Internet cannot discriminate against or block any content, just as a phone company has to transmit a call that one phone user makes to another.

So the court said net neutrality is bad?
The United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled that the F.C.C. cannot subject companies that provide Internet service to the same type of regulation that the agency imposes on phone companies. It cited the F.C.C.’s own decision in 2002 that Internet service was not a telecommunications service – like telephone or telegraph – but an information service, a classification that limits the F.C.C.’s authority.

So the F.C.C. can’t regulate the Internet?
It can, just not in the manner that it sought to do so. The appeals court said telecommunications laws give the F.C.C. broad power to make rules governing the treatment of Internet traffic by broadband providers, because Congress has directed the agency to promote innovation and the growth of the Internet.

Then what is at stake? Who opposes the F.C.C.’s regulation of the Internet and why?
Rick Wilking/ReutersVerizon challenged the rules set by the F.C.C., arguing that the commission had overstepped the authority granted to it by federal telecommunications laws.
Verizon challenged the rules, saying the F.C.C. had overstepped its authority. Verizon and other Internet service providers say that they should be able to set up specialized services, offering creators of Internet content the ability to pay to move their content through the pipes more quickly. The F.C.C., however, has said those efforts could result in only the richest companies having easy access to consumers, blocking small start-ups – perhaps the next Google or Facebook – from getting a toehold in cyberspace.

What happens now?
The F.C.C. has a few options. It can appeal the decision to the Supreme Court. It can try to rewrite its rules to prevent discrimination or blocking in a way that doesn’t require Internet service providers to provide equal access for everyone for free. Or it could overturn itself, and reclassify broadband as a utilitylike service, subject to strict regulation.
Why can’t the F.C.C. decide what it wants?
The F.C.C. exempted Internet service from utilitylike regulation in 2002, when Michael Powell, a Republican appointee, was chairman. The F.C.C.’s net neutrality rules were enacted in 2010, under Chairman Julius Genachowski, a law school chum of President Obama, who made net neutrality a campaign issue.
Now, the decision on how to proceed is up to Tom Wheeler, the new chairman, who was appointed by Mr. Obama but who has worked as a lobbyist for the cable industry and wireless phone companies. Mr. Wheeler has said he supports an open Internet, but he also has expressed willingness to allow companies to experiment with new ways of delivering Internet service

*Net Neutrality Primer from the NY Times, 1/14/14

 

Symposium Speakers

Barbara Esbin, Partner, Cinnamon Mueller
Barbara Esbin is a partner with the law firm of Cinnamon Mueller, and head of the firm’s Washington, D.C., office. Ms. Esbin joined the firm in 2010 after an extended tenure with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and following her position as a Senior Fellow and Director at the Progress & Freedom Foundation, a Washington, D.C.-based think tank specializing in communications policy and law. Ms. Esbin’s practice includes representing the American Cable Association, the leading national trade association for small and medium-sized cable companies. She also advises a cable, broadband and telecommunications clients, advising on a wide range of strategic and FCC regulatory matters, and provides counsel to investment research groups. Ms. Esbin served for over fourteen years at the FCC in a variety of senior staff positions in the Enforcement, Media, Cable Services, Wireless, and Common Carrier Bureaus, including four years as Associate Bureau Chief at the Commission’s Media Bureau. There, she represented the Bureau on a number of inter-agency efforts and led the review of several major industry mergers and rulemakings addressing cable and broadband competition issues. Between her two FCC engagements, Barbara was a partner in a private law firm, specializing in cable and broadband regulatory issues. Prior to joining the FCC, she specialized in electric utility regulation. Ms. Esbin held judicial clerkships on the North Carolina Court of Appeals and the North Carolina Supreme Court, respectively. She received her J.D. from Duke University School of Law and her B.A. from Antioch College.

John Flynn, Partner, Jenner & Block LLC
Mr. Flynn most recently served as Senior Counsel for Transactions to the Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Recruited from the private sector for this specially created role, he led the FCC’s review of the joint venture between Comcast and NBC Universal, a $30 billion transaction identified by both the Commission and outside observers as one of the most significant media transactions in history. Mr. Flynn was involved in all aspects of the process, from the substantive analysis to the political approval process, including Department of Justice, Congressional and media coordination. He was also a key architect of rules dealing with most of the leading communications issues of today and tomorrow, including those for online video, the Internet and cable and broadcast programming. The transaction review was widely credited as a success. For example, USA Today said: “The Federal Communications Commission and Justice Department did something remarkable on Tuesday: They came up with a set of conditions on a major business deal—Comcast’s acquisition of NBC Universal—that leading consumer advocates and company executives both like.” Mr. Flynn received his J.D., magna cum laude, from the Georgetown University Law Center in 1995, where he served as the Senior Notes and Comments Editor of The Georgetown Law Journal. He received his M.A. in International Policy Studies and A.B. in Political Science, with distinction, from Stanford University. Mr. Flynn clerked for the Hon. Edward R. Becker of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit in 1995. He then clerked for the Hon. Byron R. White and the Hon. John Paul Stevens on the United States Supreme Court in 1996 and 1997. He is a member of the Bars of California and District of Columbia.

Michael Weinberg, Vice President, Public Knowledge
Michael Weinberg is a Vice President at Public Knowledge, a digital advocacy group in Washington, DC. He is the author of “It Will Be Awesome If They Don’t Screw It Up: 3D Printing, Intellectual Property, and the Fight Over the Next Great Disruptive Technology” and “What’s the Deal with Copyright and 3D Printing?,” whitepapers that examine the intersection of 3D printing and intellectual property law. Although he is involved in a wide range of issues at Public Knowledge, he focuses primarily on copyright, issues before the FCC, and emerging technologies such as 3D printing and open source hardware.

Sarah Morris, Senior Police Counsel, Open Technology Institute
As a senior policy counsel for the Open Technology Institute at New America Foundation, Sarah Morris assists in the research and development of policy proposals related to open technologies, broadband access, and emerging technological issues. Prior to joining New America Foundation, Ms. Morris served as a Google Policy Fellow with the Media Access Project, where she assisted with research and drafting of FCC comments on issues including media ownership, the open Internet and retransmission consent. She earned a B.A. in Political Science and English from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and a J.D. and LL.M. in Space and Telecommunications Law from the University of Nebraska College of Law, completing her thesis on privacy and security concerns related to Smart Grid technology.

Matt Wood, Policy Director, Free Press
Matt helps shape the policy team’s efforts to protect the open Internet, prevent media concentration, promote affordable broadband deployment and prioritize a revitalized public media. Before joining Free Press, he worked at the public interest law firm Media Access Project and in the communications practice groups of two private law firms in Washington, D.C. Before that, he served as editor-in-chief for the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review, worked for PBS, and spent time at several professional and college radio and television stations. Matt earned his B.A. in film studies from Columbia University and his J.D. from Harvard Law School.