Berkman Center Fellowship - Digital Media Law Project Fellow

 

Berkman Center Fellowship Opportunity: Digital Media Law Project Fellow

The Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University seeks a new fellow to join our Digital Media Law Project (formerly the Citizen Media Law Project) to assist with the operation and expansion of our Online Media Legal Network.

The official HR language is below, and as well additional context and information can be found below and here.

Applications for this fellowship opportunity must be submitted through the Harvard Human Resources website at:<https://sjobs.brassring.com/1033/asp/tg/cim_jobdetail.asp?jobId=783269&PartnerId=25240&SiteId=5341&type=mail&JobReqLang=1&recordstart=1&JobSiteId=5341&JobSiteInfo=783269_5341&gqid=0>

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Employee Fellow, Digital Media Law Project

Duties & Responsibilities

Reports to the Director of the Berkman Center’s Digital Media Law Project and works in conjunction with the Clinical Professor/Director of the Cyberlaw Clinic. 

The fellow’s primary substantive responsibility will be to assist with the operation and expansion of the project’s Online Media Legal Network as a component of this broad-based research project. The fellow will screen new cases and clients and maintain existing relationships with clients and members of the project’s pro bono network.

The fellow may provide legal assistance, in collaboration with lawyers and law students in Harvard Law School’s Cyberlaw Clinic, to individuals and organizations that operate online and digital media ventures. Particular emphasis will be placed on recognizing the complex interactions between the business, technological, and legal aspects of clients’ needs.

The fellow also may assist in the supervision and mentoring of clinical students working on transactional, litigation, and counseling projects. The fellow may have the opportunity to engage in oral and written advocacy on behalf of clients, including opportunities to draft amicus briefs in cases involving significant First Amendment, intellectual property, and media law issues.

The fellow will have many opportunities to expand his/her knowledge of technology and law, including frequent interactions with other fellows at the Berkman Center and throughout Harvard University. The position is a great opportunity for experienced media, IP, or business law practitioners who want to serve the public interest or transition to academic pursuits.

While this position is full-time, the fellow will have the opportunity to spend a limited amount of time pursuing his/her own related academic research interests and will be provided access to Harvard’s extensive library system.

This is a fellowship position with an end date of June 30, 2012. Continuation is contingent on business needs and project funding. This opportunity is intended for an individual who wishes to further his/her own scholarship while also benefiting the work at the Center.

The annual salary is $48,000, plus health and other benefits.

Basic Qualifications

Candidates must have a Juris Doctor degree with admission to and active status in at least one state bar and eligibility for admission on motion to the Massachusetts bar. A minimum of 3 years legal-practice experience with significant Internet, intellectual property, or media law background is required.

Additional Qualifications

Expertise in the areas of transactional law and non-profit advising is preferred. Previous experience in a clinical legal setting or the direct supervision and mentoring of young attorneys also is advantageous. Candidates should be energetic and passionate about working on journalism, online speech, intellectual property, and cyberlaw issues. Top academic credentials, superior writing and verbal skills, sound judgment, exceptional ethical standards, and proven abilities in interpersonal communication, supervision, and team building are required.

About the Digital Media Law Project

The Digital Media Law Project (DMLP) works to ensure that individuals and organizations involved in online journalism and digital media have access to the legal resources, education, and help that they need to thrive. The DMLP, which began operations as the “Citizen Media Law Project” in May 2007, focuses its work on three broad areas: legal education and training; litigation and pro bono legal services; and the collection and analysis of legal threats facing online speakers and publishers. For more information on the DMLP, visit: http://www.DMLP.org/.

About the Berkman Center for Internet & Society

The Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University is a research program founded to explore cyberspace, share in its study, and help pioneer its development. Founded in 1997, through a generous gift from Jack N. and Lillian R. Berkman, the Center is home to an ever-growing community of faculty, fellows, staff, and affiliates working on projects that span the broad range of intersections between cyberspace, technology, and society. More information can be found athttp://cyber.law.harvard.edu.

Commitment to Diversity

The work and well-being of the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University are strengthened profoundly by the diversity of our network and our differences in background, culture, experience, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, and much more. We actively seek and welcome applications from people of color, women, the LGBTQ community, and persons with disabilities, as well as applications from researchers and practitioners from across the spectrum of disciplines and methods. The roots of this deep commitment are many and, appropriately, diverse. We are not nearly far enough along in this regard, and we may never be. It is a constant process in which there remains much to learn. We welcome your inquiries, comments and ideas on how we may continue to improve.

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What is the Berkman Center for Internet & Society?

The Berkman Center for Internet & Society is a research center founded at Harvard Law School in 1997. Now a university-wide center, it serves as the locus for a network of Harvard and other faculty, students, fellows, lawyers, entrepreneurs, and others working to identify and engage with the challenges and opportunities presented by the Internet.  The Center is devoted to research and teaching on issues at the intersection of emerging technologies, law, public policy, industry, and education and to the development of dynamic approaches and rigorous scholarship that can affect and support the public interest.

The Berkman Center has been at the forefront of efforts to study and facilitate online expression, including, among other initiatives: publishing Media Re:public, a series of papers exploring the potential and the challenges of the emerging networked digital media environment; launching Global Voices Online, a nonprofit that aggregates and disseminates the views expressed in blogs throughout the world; and hosting the Blogging, Journalism, and Credibility Conference, which brought together professional journalists, bloggers, news executives, media scholars, and lawyers to study the emerging media environment on the Internet.  

What does the Digital Media Law Project do?

The Digital Media Law Project (DMLP) works to ensure that individuals and organizations involved in online journalism and digital media have access to the legal resources, education, and help that they need to thrive.  The DMLP, which began operations as the “Citizen Media Law Project” in May 2007, focuses its work on three broad areas: legal education and training; litigation and pro bono legal services; and the collection and analysis of legal threats facing online speakers and publishers. The DMLP endeavors to serve as a catalyst for creative thinking about the intersection of law and journalism on the Internet. Through the project’s website, www.DMLP.org, the active engagement of lawyers and scholars, and occasional sponsored conferences, project staff are working to build a community of lawyers, academics, and others who are interested in supporting innovative journalism ventures and protecting the legal rights of those engaged in speech on the Internet.

A central aim of the DMLP is to provide practical knowledge and legal assistance for online media. This includes providing pro bono legal assistance to new journalism ventures and other independent online publishers on a diverse range of topics, including business formation and governance, copyright licensing and fair use, employment and freelancer agreements, pre-publication review of content, and representation in litigation. In January 2010, DMLP launched a pro bono legal referral network called the a Online Media Legal Network comprised of law school clinics, in-house legal counsel, and individual lawyers across the United States who provide free and low-cost legal assistance to online journalism ventures and other digital media creators.   

DMLP also has filed and participated in amicus curiae (friend of the court) briefs in cases raising important First Amendment and intellectual property issues, including:

  • Maxon v. Ottawa Publ'g Co., No. 2008-MR-125 (Ill. App. Ct. Mar. 24, 2009). We submitted a brief urging an Illinois appellate court to protect the rights of anonymous Internet speakers by imposing important procedural safeguards before ordering disclosure of their identities.
  • Barnes v. Yahoo! Inc., No. 05-36189 (9th Cir. May 21, 2009). We joined Public Citizen, the Center for Democracy and Technology, and the Electronic Frontier Foundation in asking the court to amend its opinion to omit dicta indicating that Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act cannot be raised on a motion to dismiss, as well as to clarify that Section 230 applies to federal as well as state law claims. 
  • The Mortgage Specialists, Inc. v. Implode-Explode Heavy Industries, Inc., No. 2009-0262 (N.H. June 22, 2009). We joined forces with the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press to submit a brief urging the New Hampshire Supreme Court to defend the First Amendment rights of a website that covers news about the mortgage industry and to apply New Hampshire's qualified reporter's privilege to online news publishers.
  • Fustolo v. Hollander, No. SJC-10485 (Mass. Oct. 1, 2009). We joined the ACLU of Massachusetts and the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law of the Boston Bar Association in submitting a brief arguing that the Massachusetts anti-SLAPP statute applies to all parties who engage in petitioning activities, including members of the news media and paid staff of advocacy organizations.
  • Wright Development Group LLC v. Walsh, No. 08-2783 (Ill. Mar. 3, 2010). We submitted a brief to the Illinois Supreme Court urging the court to reject two lower courts’ narrow interpretations of the state’s Anti-SLAPP statute, known as the Citizen Participation Act.
  • Barclays Capital Inc. v. Theflyonthewall.com, Inc., 10-1372-CV (2d Cir. June 21, 2010). We joined EFF and Public Citizen to submit a brief to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals urging the court to apply First Amendment scrutiny to the “hot news misappropriation” doctrine.

What will the Employee Fellow do?

The Employee Fellow will serve as a staff attorney for Digital Media Law Project.  The Fellow’s primary substantive responsibility will be to assist with the operation and expansion of the project’s Online Media Legal Network.  The Fellow will screen new cases and clients and maintain existing relationships with clients and members of the project’s pro bono network.The Fellow may provide legal assistance, in collaboration with lawyers and law students in Harvard Law School’s Cyberlaw Clinic, to individuals and organizations that operate online and digital media ventures.  Particular emphasis will be placed on recognizing the complex interactions between the business, technological, and legal aspects of clients’ needs.  The Fellow also may assist in the supervision and mentoring of clinical students working on transactional, litigation, and counseling projects.

The Fellow may have the opportunity to engage in oral and written advocacy on behalf of clients, including opportunities to draft amicus briefs in cases involving significant First Amendment, intellectual property, and media law issues.

The Fellow will have many opportunities to expand his/her knowledge of technology and law, including frequent interactions with other fellows at the Berkman Center and throughout Harvard University.  The position is a great opportunity for experienced media, IP, or business law practitioners who want to serve the public interest, transition to academic pursuits, or simply work in an intellectually invigorating environment.

While this position is full-time, the Fellow will have the opportunity to spend a limited amount of time pursuing his/her own related academic research interests and will be provided access to Harvard’s extensive library system. 

This is a fellowship position for one year with a salary of $48,000, plus health and other benefits; continuation is contingent on business needs and project funding.

What qualifications are necessary?

Candidates must have a Juris Doctor degree with admission to and active status in at least one state bar and eligibility for admission on motion to the Massachusetts bar.  A minimum of 3 years legal-practice experience with significant Internet, intellectual property, or media law background is required. Expertise in the areas of transactional law and non-profit advising is preferred.  Previous experience in a clinical legal setting or the direct supervision and mentoring of young attorneys also is advantageous.

Candidates should be energetic and passionate about working on journalism, online speech, intellectual property, and cyberlaw issues.  Top academic credentials, superior writing and verbal skills, sound judgment, exceptional ethical standards, and proven abilities in interpersonal communication, supervision, and team building are required.

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