Robert J. Ambrogi
Law Technology News
For lawyers in many fields, blogs are becoming the new "pocket part." With their immediacy and focus, they provide up-to-the-minute news and analysis of judicial, legislative and regulatory developments. More than in any other area of law, this is the case for intellectual property. Dozens of blogs now track developments in patent, trademark and copyright law. Written by practicing lawyers, full-time academics and even non-lawyers, they discuss events virtually as they happen, often adding their unique perspective and analysis.
Here is a survey of selected IP blogs. The listing is alphabetical, not by ranking. (For the sake of space, omitted are those that focus on domain name rights and governance.)
• Anything Under the Sun Made by Man, www.krajec.com/blog. This blog about patents and business strategies is written by Coloradan Russ Krajec, a registered patent agent, engineer, and inventor with more than 20 U.S. patents of his own. He writes about topics such as claims and drafting, patent strategies and the business of patent law.
• Berkeley Intellectual Property Weblog, http://www.biplog.com/. Originally produced by a class at the University of California Berkeley's Graduate School of Journalism, faculty and students carry on its mission of advancing the debate about intellectual property by aggregating noteworthy, factual information with thought-provoking commentary.
• Chris Rush Cohen, http://www.chris-cohen.blogspot.com/. A third-year student at Benjamin Cardozo School of Law, Cohen writes about IP and Internet law, technology news, and New York City.
• Copyfight, www.corante.com/copyfight. Focused on "the politics of IP," Copyfight is jointly written by a group of academics, practitioners and writers highly regarded in the fields of IP and Internet law. Their purpose is to explore the nexus of law and "the networked world."
• Current Copyright Readings, http://copyrightreadings.blogspot.com/. M. Claire Stewart, head of digital media services at the Northwestern University Library, describes this as a bibliography of current articles on the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, the Teach Act and other copyright issues.
• Dan Fingerman, www.danfingerman.com/dtm. A patent litigator in San Jose, Calif., Fingerman writes about a hodgepodge of topics, from patents to hockey.
• Rader Blog, http://cyberlaw.stanford.edu/blogs/rader. Elizabeth Rader, fellow in residence at Stanford Law School's The Center for Internet and Society, writes about IP, privacy and Internet law.
• Furdlog, http://msl1.mit.edu/furdlog. Frank Field, senior research engineer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Center for Technology, Policy and Industrial Development, writes about the technology, culture and policy of IP.
• Greplaw, http://grep.law.harvard.edu/. From Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet Law and Technology, Greplaw follows recent developments in IP and Internet law.
• Guiding Rights Blog, http://guidingrights.blogcollective.com/blog. An intellectual property lawyer in Chicago, Mark Partridge publishes this blog as an extension of his 2003 book, Guiding Rights: Trademarks, Copyright and the Internet. He posts frequently about IP news and legal developments.
• Induce Act Blawg, http://techlawadvisor.com/induce. Three writers contribute to this blog, devoted to tracking and commenting on the Inducing Infringements of Copyright Act of 2004.
• IP Litigation Blog, http://www.iplitigationblog.com/. On Aug. 31, 2004, Seattle, Wash., lawyer Philip Mann marked two achievements -- he launched this blog, and he launched his own firm, the Mann Law Group. It is difficult to take the measure of a blog this new, but worth noting is the blog's striking design, a product of Kevin O'Keefe's lexBlog, www.lexblog.com.
• IPTAblog, http://www.iptablog.org/. Third-year law student Andrew Raff writes with a focus on how computers and the Internet affect the practice and substance of law, particularly within the areas of copyright, trademark and privacy.
• I/P Updates, http://ip-updates.blogspot.com/. William Heinze, an IP lawyer in Atlanta, where he is of counsel to the firm Thomas, Kayden, Horstemeyer & Risley, provides news and information for IP practitioners. He is a frequent and thoughtful writer who covers a range of IP-related matters.
• The Invent Blog, http://www.inventblog.com/. Stephen Nipper, a patent attorney in Boise, Idaho, provides news and information about patents, trademarks, copyrights and IP law in general. But of most interest are his postings about unique and noteworthy inventions and inventors.
• IP News Blog, http://www.ipnewsblog.com/. Students and faculty at the Franklin Pierce Law Center provide frequent reports on developments in U.S. and international IP law.
• IPKat, http://www.ipkat.com/. Jeremy Phillips and Ilanah Simon are prominent U.K. academics, editors and authors in the field of IP law. Their blog looks at copyright, patent, trademark, branding and privacy law from a mainly U.K. and European perspective.
• Navigating the Patent Maze, http://lorac.typepad.com/patent_blog. Having spent part of her career spearheading development of an online IP database, Carol Nottenburg, now a Seattle patent lawyer, brings to her blog a unique focus on finding and using online patent data.
• Nerd Law.org, http://www.nerdlaw.org/. Kimberly Isbell, an IP associate with a Washington, D.C., law firm and a former law-student affiliate of Harvard's Berkman Center, blogs about what she describes as "law for nerds at heart."
• Patently Obvious, http://patentlaw.typepad.com/. Dennis Crouch, a patent attorney at the Chicago law firm McDonnell Boehnen Hulbert & Berghoff, covers patent law with substantial depth and scope. His topics range from new lawsuits to interesting inventions, but his first goal is to review every appellate opinion directly related to patent law, most regulatory and legislative changes, and some district court opinions.
• Phosita, at www.okpatents.com/phosita. A group blog written by lawyers at Dunlap, Codding & Rogers, Oklahoma City, Okla., its name comes from the patent-law term for a mythical person of ordinary skill in the art to whom an invention, in order to be patentable, must not be obvious. They seek to write about IP news "that may be of interest to the Phosita in each of us."
• Promote the Progress, at http://www.promotetheprogress.com/. Maintained by J. Matthew Buchanan, a lawyer in Perrysburg, Ohio, the blog focuses on intellectual property and technology law issues.
• TechLawyer, http://lawyerinparadise.typepad.com/techlawyer. With straw hat, shades and Hawaiian shirt, this IP and technology lawyer from Honolulu provides his thoughts on developments in law, business and politics.
• The Importance of ..., www.corante.com/importance. Former president and co-founder of Yale Law School's Law and Technology Society, and founder of the technology law and policy news site LawMeme, Ernest Miller is a fellow of Yale's Information Society Project, where he writes about IP, Internet law and First Amendment issues.
• Trademark Blog, http://trademark.blog.us/blog. New York City lawyer Martin Schwimmer offers news and commentary about U.S. and international trademark and domain name issues. Former general counsel to NameEngine Inc., a domain name services company, Schwimmer is vice president of the Intellectual Property Constituency of ICANN.
• Two-Seventy-One Patent Blog, http://271patent.blogspot.com/. Peter Zura, a patent attorney in Chicago, maintains this blog, devoted to "changing the world of patents and IP one blog at a time."
Ambrogi is the author of the revised and expanded second edition of The Essential Guide to the Best (and Worst) Legal Sites on the Web, now available at www.lawcatalog.com.