Computer Science Events

Sep 30

CS Tea: Stacey Dogan (Boston University School of Law)

Can Antitrust Law Rein in Big Tech?

4:00 – 5:00 pm / Olin 306

Abstract:  After decades of infatuation with the flashy gadgets, unimaginable convenience, and alluring social communities offered by the leading tech firms, public opinion has shifted in recent years. From election interference to de-platforming to child porn to vaccine misinformation, the public has grown increasingly concerned about harms caused by online platforms and related technologies. As a result, the public – and politicians from both parties – are calling for a reevaluation of the laissez-faire approach that the government has thus far taken toward these firms. Antitrust law has taken center stage in these calls for reform. But is antitrust law up to the task? This “CS Tea” presentation will first provide an overview of the function and limitations of antitrust law, and then will consider its potential to rein in Big Tech. The talk will also briefly address antitrust reform proposals, such as Senator Klobuchar’s Competition and Antitrust Enforcement Reform Act of 2021, that aim to fortify antitrust’s arsenal against these powerful market players.

Biography:  Stacey Dogan, Professor and Law Alumni Scholar at Boston University School of Law, is a leading scholar in intellectual property, competition, and technology law. Over the past decade, she has been instrumental in building interdisciplinary and inter-institutional collaborations in the areas of law, technology, and entrepreneurship. She was a founding member of the Oversight Board for the BU/MIT Technology Law Clinic and Startup Law Clinic, a first-of-its-kind program in which BU law students provide free legal advice to student-innovators at BU and MIT. She is a founding member of the faculty of BU’s new faculty of Computing and Data Sciences, serves on the steering committee for BU's Data Science for Good (DS4G) Initiative and the Hariri Institute for Computing and Computational Science, and is a leader of BU’s Cyber Security, Law & Society Alliance, a partnership between the law school and BU’s Center for Reliable Information Systems & Cyber Security. Her teaching and scholarship have addressed a range of intellectual property and competition law issues, with a special emphasis on the legal responsibility of online intermediaries and other technology developers for harms caused by their products. For many years, she has taught a seminar called Intellectual Property and the Internet; she has also co-taught Law and Algorithms, an interdisciplinary course involving faculty and students from BU's programs in Law, Computer Science, and Computing and Data Sciences. From 2018 to 2021, she served as the School of Law’s Associate Dean for Academic Affairs.

Before joining the BU faculty, Professor Dogan taught for more than a decade at Northeastern University School of Law, where she focused on intellectual property and antitrust law. She came to teaching after several years of practicing law with the Washington, DC law firm of Covington & Burling, where she specialized in antitrust, trademark, and copyright law. After law school, she practiced with Heller, Ehrman, White & McAuliffe in San Francisco and served as a law clerk to the Honorable Judith Rogers of the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

Sponsored by Computer Science Events. Contact: David Liben-Nowell