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Fifth Law & Information Society Symposium

March 25, 2011

Mobile Devices, Location Technologies & Shifting Values

In celebration of CLIP’s Fifth Anniversary, this symposium explored emerging law and policy related to mobile devices, location technologies and shifting public values. Advances in information and network technologies have placed mobile computing at the forefront of the global information economy. The popularity of devices like smart phones and of applications providing location based services have led to an increase in information collection and information accessibility. At the same time, values and societal expectations with respect to key issues such as access to networks, use of content, and privacy are shifting. This symposium brought together thought-leaders and practitioners to address and assess policies and solutions for the cutting-edge issues that will affect the evolution of mobile computing.

Panel 1: Evolving Values Regarding Locational Privacy

Have mobile devices and location based services changed our values regarding privacy, data collection and data use? This panel explored the privacy concerns that arise as people begin turning over and technologies disclose more information in order to use mobile devices and LBS. What rights do individuals have in the data collected? What rights do people expect and are expectations changing as these services become more popular? What rights are granted/recognized internationally and how can compliance with local and international standards be assured? What rights should corporations ethically grant their users?

Katherine Strandburg, Professor of Law, New York University School of Law


  • Cedric Burton, Associate, Hunton & Williams LLP
  • Lorrie Cranor, Associate Professor of Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University
  • Maneesha Mithal, Director of the Division of Privacy & Identity Presentation, Federal Trade Commission
  • Shane O’Neill, Chief Technology Officer, Fandango, Inc.
  • Jules Polonetsky, Co-Chair and Director, Future of Privacy Forum
  • Teresa Scassa, Canada Research Chair in Information Law, University of Ottawa Faculty of Law

Panel 2: Shifting Standards for Law Enforcement and Government Access to Location Data

What standards should apply to government access to, and collection of location data? This panel considered how the “reasonable expectation of privacy” is changing as individuals hand more data over to third parties. What limits should there be on law enforcement access to this new data? What are the most significant international differences in the standards for government access to location data?

Alexander H. Southwell, Partner, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP


  • Kevin Bankston, Senior Staff Attorney, Electronic Frontier Foundation
  • Susan Freiwald, Professor of Law, University of San Francisco School of Law
  • Orin Kerr, Professor of Law, George Washington University Law School

Panel 3: The Judicial Panel

A panel of federal judges discussed the challenges of confronting new technologies in the courtroom.

Joel R. Reidenberg, Stanley D. & Nikki Waxberg Chair and Professor of Law and Academic Director of the Center on Law & Information Policy


  • The Honorable Marsha S. Berzon, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • The Honorable Denny Chin, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
  • The Honorable Marilyn Patel, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California

Panel 4: Emerging Issues for Intellectual Property and Mobile Devices

How do mobile devices and location technologies impact the distribution of content? This panel considered how mobile computing impacts intellectual property rights. What challenges do content providers face in bringing their products to mobile devices? How do these challenges vary across national borders? How does mobility impact distribution rights? How do location technologies impact territorial licensing and royalty calculations?

Jeffrey P. Cunard, Partner, Debevoise & Plimpton LLP


  • Hayley Geftman, Vice President of Business & Legal Affairs, Global Digital Media, MTV Networks
  • James Grimmelmann, Associate Professor, New York Law School
  • Richard Raysman, Partner, Holland & Knight LLP
  • Michael Simon, Senior Vice President of Business Affairs, General Counsel and Chief Strategic Officer, Harry Fox Agency, Inc.

Panel 5: Emerging Considerations for Transactional Practices

What new issues do mobile devices and location technologies raise? This panel looked at what practitioners can do to advise clients engaged in mobile computing and LBS. Topics of consideration included: How do LBS providers allocate rights to mobile communications data? What happens to the location data upon dissolution or acquisition? What types of notice should providers give to users? Should the storage of location data occur on an opt in or opt out basis?

Barry M. Benjamin, Partner, Kilpatrick Townsend


  • Alan Chapell, Chapell & Associates, Chair of Privacy & Advocacy Committee, Mobile Marketing Association
  • Brian Chase, General Counsel, Foursquare Labs, Inc.
  • Fabiana Leek, Legal Director, North America, Nokia, Inc.
  • Christopher Wolf, Partner, Hogan Lovells LLP