Patents, Copyrights, and the Law of Intellectual Property

Course Info

Course Number/Code: 15.628 (Spring 2003)
Course Title: Patents, Copyrights, and the Law of Intellectual Property
Course Level: Undergraduate / Graduate
Offered By: Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
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Department: Sloan School of Management
Course Instructor(s): John Akula, Senior Lecturer in Law
Course Introduction:
Syllabus Table of Topics Introduction to American law and to intellectual propertyPatentsPatentable subject matterStatutory barsRights of the patent holderInfringementNovelty and non-obviousnessPatent protection for software, algorithms, and business methodsThe patent applicationScope of claimsCopyrightsCopyrightable subject matterComparison with patentsMerger and scènes-à-faireSubstantial similarityCopyrights in the context of information technologiesFair useTrademarks, service marks, and conflicts with domain namesTrade secretsLicense agreements Assignments and Grading Readings will be taken mostly from the statutes and the case law of intellectual property. Students will be expected to read the materials carefully prior to class and to be prepared to discuss them in class. (Short preparation exercises will be assigned.) There will also be student presentations of cases that are not assigned to the class as a whole. There will be no term papers or exams. However, to receive passing grades, students will be expected to attend regularly, and to prepare for and participate actively in class discussions. If it should become necessary for a student to miss a particular class, he or she should make appropriate make-up arrangements with the instructor ahead of time.