Professor Andrea Johnson Fall 2007

Class Hours: Monday & Wednesday Rm. MMR Office Hours: Monday ;

Wednesday , or by appointment

Office No. (619) 525-1474 E-Mail: [email protected]


Telecommunications Law


This course will review current events in telecommunications and the impact of regulatory and technological developments in building the super information highway. The goals of the course are 1) to give students a basic understanding of the current issues in telecommunications and new technological innovations; 2) to develop a practical context and analytical framework for understanding the interdisciplinary issues in telecommunications; and 3) to learn how to use technology to access current resources.


Students will become familiar with the technology including broadcast, cable, telephony, the Internet, and new technology systems. Students will not only study the industry, but also use the technology as an integral part of the class. Students will engage in role-playing and simulations to resolve current issues in regulation and licensing of technology.


A.                 METHODOLOGY


This course will require students to use the computer and the Internet. Class will be taught using a "Problem Method" or "Modular Approach" to provide a context for discussion of cases, principles, and creative problem-solving and critical analytical thinking. The materials will be presented in modules, or a discreet segments that incorporate case studies and practical problems to understand the basic principles and issues. All course materials will be linked to a database for easy retrieval, or students will be given the cites and can download them from Westlaw or Lexis.


There is also a on-line course workbook called Cyber Workbooks (CWB) that is interactive and contains modules, divided into parts with lessons, questions and answers. The workbook is designed to allow students to engage in self-directed learning with instant feedback. Students will purchase a license from the bookstore, and receive a user name and password. The program will time, record and grade student responses.


During the first week of class, students will be trained on conducting research on the Internet. Westlaw and Lexis training can be done outside of class. A bibliography database has been created as a resource on a variety of topics in telecommunications including the assigned reading. You should also see the professor for assistance in finding materials. The website for the course is on Professor Johnsons faculty home page. Click on Telecommunications Law. The website will be used to post assignments, professor notes, links to class list and other resources.


B.                GRADES

During the second week of class, you will be asked to select a new technology or communication service, e.g., voice, data, or video; and write a 3- page paper, describing the new technology or application, the challenges in commercial deployment, and your views on the marketability of that service to consumer and/or business users.


There will also be a 25 page paper including footnotes on any current legal topic in the field. Topics will be due on October 8th, Thesis and Outlines are due on October 31st. Introduction is due on November 19th.



Grades will be computed as follows:


Cyber Workbooks Modules............................................ 25 points

1 CPS Worksheet........................................................... 10 points

3 Page Paper on Technology..................................................... 15 points

25 (SWO) Page Final.................................................................. 50 points


100 points


The class will be conducted through lecture and class discussion. Students are expected to comment, critique, and make recommendations. The first part of class will discuss basic principles and background information provided as a framework for news articles and periodicals assigned for discussion. Students are expected to attend class and be prepared. Points will be deducted for repeated and unexcused absences. The assignments below may change as modifications in the law or current events dictate. Advance notice will be provided in writing with any modifications.



The materials will be presented in modules, or discreet segments that incorporate case studies and practical problems to understand the basic principles and issues. All course materials will be linked to a database for easy retrieval, or students will be given the cites and can download them from Westlaw or Lexis.






This module will provide an overview of a telecommunications network, the Internet, and new trends. Students will work in a small group to identify the next killer application, and will select a technology and write a 3-page paper describing the technology, how it functions or its application, and your views on the commercial viability of the technology, including the pros and cons.


1.      Get  user name and password for CWB and Elluminate from Bookstore.

2.      Participants  Elluminate PPT Slides


Articles for 9/5/07can be access through this link or from Westlaw. 

Surveillance Technology

1.      Westlaw and Lexis Training (Bobbi Weaver)

2.      Andrea Johnson, Teaching Creative Problem Solving Skills (on reserve)

3.      Computer Exercise

NO CLASS 9/3/07


4.     Krause, Jason, Stolen Lives, ABA Journal (March 2006) p 36

5.      Michael Santorelli, Is the Municipal Rush to Rescue Broadband Really Helping or Impairing US national Broadband Development?  The SciTech Lawyer  (Summer 2007) p 18

6.      Jonathan E. Meer, Is the Federal Government Making VoIP Safer? Communications Lawyer (Spring 2007)


7.      Matt Richtel, Use of Cell Phones to Track Suspects Curbed by Courts, SD Union A1 (12/10/05

8.      IP-Enabled Services, FCC  

9.      Cyber Workbooks Module 1.1.1-1.1.2

C. INTERNET TRENDS                 (9/10/07)

1.      Federal Communications Commission, Strategic Plan FY 2006-FY 2011, <>  pp 1-7

2.      Jason Oxman, "The FCC and the Unregulation of the Internet" , pp 3, 12-13, 20-21    (on reserve)  < papers/oppwp31.doc>

3.      Yochi J.Dreazen, The Internet-The

Best Way
to Guard Your Privacy,  2002 WL-WSJ 103126350 (Nov. 18, 2002)

4.      High Speed Internet AccessBroadband

5.      Digital Tornado: The Internet and Telecommunications Policy (March 1997) pp 10-26

6.      Jason Oxman, "The FCC and the Unregulation of the Internet" , pp 21-28  (on reserve) papers/oppwp31.doc

7.      Cyber Workbooks Module  1.1.3

D.  KILLER  APP  EXERCISE   (9/12/07)  "The Next Killer App"

            1.  Complete Killer App Worksheet


                        Topic Due:  9/17/07

              Paper Due:  10/1/07




            This module will focus on how telecommunications is regulated focusing on two case studies. The first case study will focus on the regulation of converging industries such as telephony and cable. The second case study will focus on whether the FBI should be able to conduct warrantless searches on conversations over  VoIP.  Students will be divided into groups to seek a settlement  through negotiated rulemaking.  A student group will focus on how to address the problem of  convergence of  telecommunications and deregulating to facilitate competition.



1.      Federal Communications Commission, Strategic Plan FY 2006-FY 2011,, Strategic Plan   pp 13-18

2.      About the FCC,  pp 1-3

3.       FCC Commissioners 2007

4.      Telecommunications Act of 1996 (Overview)

5.      Negotiated Rulemaking  5 USCA 581-590 

6.      Complete Cyber Workbooks Module 1.2.1-1.2.2


1.      Andrea Johnson, "A City Guide to Developing, Using and Regulating Regional Telecommunications Networks Under the Telecommunications Act of 1996" 21 NLR 515 pp 518-525 (1997)

2.      The FCC, Internet Service Providers, and Access Charges, 

3.      Understanding Your Phone Bill Charges, Changes and Contacts: The FCCs Three Cs for Consumer Protection, 

      C. HOMELAND SECURITY AND PRIVACY             (9/24/07, 9/26/07)

Articles can be access through this link or from Westlaw. 

Internet Surveillance

1.      David Alan Jordan, Decrypting the Fourth Amendment: Warrantless NSA Surveillance and the Enhanced Expectation of Privacy Provided by Encrypted Voice Over Internet Protocol,  47 BCLRev 505 (2006)  506-530, 543-546

2.      Susan Landau, National Security on the Line, 4 J.Telecomm& High Tech L 409-447 (2006)


3.      Jonathan Barker, Societys Carnivores, Both Good and Bad, The Internet Wiretap: Why We need it, and How it should be regulated. 74 UMKC L. Rev. 965-972

4.      John Cary Sims, What NSA is DoingAnd Why its Illegal 33 Hastings Const LQ 105-140

5.      CPS WORKSHEET  DUE (10/1/07)

6.      SMALL GROUP DISCUSSION  (10/1/07)

7.      PRESENTATIONS  (10/3/07)


This module will introduce basic principles of intellectual property,  copyright and patent law. The case study will focus on the controversy over copyright piracy.




1.      Mark F. Shultz, Will BitTorrent Go the Way of Grokster? File Sharing After MGM v. Grosker, SciTech Lawyer Winter 2006 p 4-8 (Handout)

2.      Skim through the Following Cases to Understand the Current State of the Law

a.      Recording Industry Association of America v Verizon Internet Services, 351 F3d 1229 (DC Cir 2003)

b.      Charter v SBC, 393 F3d 771 (2005)

c.      Perfect 10 v. Google, 416 FSupp 2d 828 (C.D.Ca 2006)

d. Arista Records v. Flea World Inc. , 2006 WL 842883 (DNJ 2006)


1.    Shane Ham, Robert Atkinson, Confronting Digital Piracy, PPI  [email protected]  

2.      Doris Estelle Long, E-Business Solutions to Internet Piracy: A Practical Guide, 740 PLI/Pat 772-806


                              1. SMALL GROUP DISCUSSIONS  (10/17/07)

                              2. CPS WORKSHEET DUE  (10/17/07)

                               3.   PRESENTATIONS  (10/22/07)


This module will  focus on use of technology for surveillance and spying, and  computer fraud.   

 Part 1: Government Toll Fraud

               A. EXERCISE: GOVERNMENT TOLL FRAUD  (10/24/07)

1.   AT&T v. NYC,  833 FSupp 962; 1993 U.S. Dist.Lexis 14516  (Gov. toll fraud)

                                2. Negotiation Techniques (handout)

3.  In-class Negotiation: Gov. Toll Fraud (see instructions)

Part 2: Computer Fraud, Terrorism and Privacy

This case study will focus on computer fraud and hacking and use of technology to conduct surveillance. Student groups will engage in negotiating resolution of these issues.

 Facts: Innovative Harry  is a student at the University of Tech and develops a computer simulation program  called TAISP   to predict future acts of terrorism and to develop war strategies.   After an unsuccessful attempt to license it to the Government, Harry hacks into the governments computer system to access a database for use in his program.  The Government subsequently tracks down Harry, seizes his computer and puts him in jail. Harry has threatened to unleash a virus;  the Government wants the source code to his program and wants to stop the virus.   The University has claimed an interest in the program. The parties must negotiate a resolution that enables Harry to get out of jail, disposes of who owns the TAISP program, and allays the Governments concerns that the program will not be used against U.S. interests.


  PATENTS  (10/29/07)    

                        1. Prof. John R. Kettle, Intellectual Property Abstract, 757

                                  PLI/Pat 9, Copyright  pp 11-21, Ideas pp 36-40;

                          2. Prof. John R. Kettle, Intellectual Property Abstract, 757

                      PLI/Pat 9, Patents pp 42-56; Trade Secrets pp 57-65


1.      Theofel v. Farey-Jones,  359 F3d 1066 (2004);

2.      People v. Superior Court  49 Cal Rptr 831, 835-838, 844-851

3.    Module Overview: Complete CWB Module 2, Part 1 of Computer Fraud and Hacking Module: Computer Basics and Intellectual Property  ---   Complete Priority Charts

                                4. Complete CWB Module, Part 2 of Computer Fraud and Hacking  (11/5/07) Module and Fill in your  Worksheets

                                        a) Overview of Computer Crimes and Privacy

                                        b) Priority Charts


5. Small Group Discussions (Charts and 1-pg Strategy

due)  (11/7/07)

(In lieu of CPS Worksheet, submit Priority Charts and Rules, along with 1-page on your Opening position, Negotiating Points, and Bottom Line)

6. Roundtable Negotiation  (11/12/07)

                        C. SOFTWARE LICENSING OF TAISP  (11/14/07, 11/19/07)   

1.              Evelyn M. Sommer, "Licensing Intellectual Property,"  pp 1-6, 12-14, 16-21 (On reserve)

2.               Michael E. Bieniek, "Software Licensing"  pp 1-30     

3.              Small Group Discussions  (Opening Position, Negotiation Points and Bottom Line)  (11/26/07, 11/28/07)

                                  4.  Software Negotiations  (Last Day-12/3/07)          

                    FINAL PAPER  DUE BY COB VIA EMAIL  (12/10/07)