The Catholic University of America

Professor Beth Winston

Leading Intellectual Property Scholars Convene for CUA IP Roundtable

An intellectual property roundtable organized by Columbus School of Law professor Beth Winston was held at the law school on Jan. 30 and attended by some of the most prominent thinkers and writers in the field.

The two-hour discussion offered four presentations by attending professors:

  • "Can't Stop the Signal: The Library in Space and Transformational Copyright Law - Specifying Architecture & Code in the Public Interest" by Thomas C. Folsom, associate professor, Regent University School of Law.
  • "The Use and Abuse of IP at the Birth of the Administrative State" by Adam Mossoff, associate professor of law, George Mason University School of Law.
  • "The Patent Conversation" by Kristen Osenga, assistant professor of law, University of Richmond School of Law.
  • "The Implied Viewer: Reframing the Debates Surrounding Product Placement" by Zahr Stauffer, visiting assistant professor of law, University of Virginia School of Law.

The discussion was wide-ranging, collegial and at times rather technical. It covered such topics as the intersection of IP and the administrative state, a philosophical debate about whether the theories of John Locke match up with current theories of natural right used to justify IP, and whether scripts written for NBC's "30 Rock" that reference products made by General Electric - the networks' parent company - call into question the usefulness of sponsorship disclosure laws.

Rebecca Tushnet, a Georgetown University Law Center professor who blogs about intellectual property issues and events, called the roundtable "ably organized by Beth Winston. A very nice size, with papers at a stage that rewarded discussion."