About the Cyberlaw Clinic

Harvard Law School‘s Cyberlaw Clinic, based at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society, provides pro bono legal services at the intersection of technology and social justice. The Cyberlaw Clinic was the first of its kind, and it continues its tradition of innovation in its areas of practice.

The Clinic’s work, teaching activities, and client selection are animated by our core values:

  • promotion of a robust and inclusive online ecosystem for free expression;
  • advancement of diversity as a key interest in technology development and tech policy;
  • elimination or mitigation of the impact of bias in the development and deployment of technology;
  • respect for and protection of privacy, vis-à-vis both private and government actors;
  • open government;
  • transparency with respect to public and private technical systems that impact all citizens (and, in particular, members of vulnerable populations);
  • access to knowledge and information;
  • advancement of cultural production through efficient and balanced regulatory and enforcement regimes; and
  • support for broad participation in public discourse.

Participation in the Cyberlaw Clinic helps law students prepare for practice by working on real-world client counseling, advocacy, litigation, and transactional projects. The Clinic strives to center clients in our legal work, helping them to achieve success as they define it, mindful of (and in response to) existing law.

From the Blog

Clinic, SPN, and LCA Fight Digital Deterioration, Prepare for 1201 Hearings

This spring, the Cyberlaw Clinic is returning to the eighth triennial rulemaking proceeding under 17 U.S.C. 1201, which considers exemptions to the anti-circumvention provision of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA)Section 1201 of the DMCA outlaws the circumvention of technological protection measures (TPMs) that prevent the unauthorized copying of digital materials. The blanket ban on TPM circumvention, however, applies regardless of whether the underlying use of materials is infringing or fair. Therefore, every three years the Copyright Office holds hearings to determine appropriate exemptions to 1201 restrictions, and make a recommendation to the Librarian of Congress, who ultimately decides which uses are exempted from 1201. This year, the Cyberlaw Clinic, on behalf of the Software Preservation Network and Library Copyright Alliance, seeks to expand the exempted uses to allow eligible memory institutions to access out-of-commerce software and video games remotely for qualifying preservation, research, and teaching purposes.  

Cyberlaw Clinic Works With TaSC to Submit UN Comment

On February 15, the Technology and Social Change Team at the Harvard Shorenstein Center (TaSC) submitted a comment drafted by the Cyberlaw Clinic to the UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of freedom of opinion and expression, Irene Khan. The call for comments was issued in anticipation of the Special Rapporteur’s upcoming report on the relationship between disinformation and freedom of expression that will be presented to the Human Rights Council in June 2021. The Special Rapporteur welcomed contributions that addressed how human rights law applies to disinformation, what impact of measures already taken to address disinformation has had on human rights, and any recommendations on how to protect human rights while addressing disinformation.