Jaszi Lecture November 10th—Decriminalizing Education, Again

The law school was thrilled to present the 11thAnnual Peter A. Jaszi Distinguished Lecture on Intellectual Property on November 10th featuring longtime clinic client Peter Decherney’s reflections on his odyssey seeking exemptions for educators. Peter Decherney is a Professor of Cinema & Media Studies and Faculty Director of the Online Learning Initiative at the University of Pennsylvania. DeCherney discussed his 17 year collaboration with the Washington College of Law’s Glushko-Samuelson Intellectual Property Law Clinic. Among other joint endeavors, he and the clinic have successfully petitioned for a series of expanding educational exemptions to the anticircumvention provisions of 1998 Digital Millenium Copyright Act. In his talk, Professor Decherney described the clash of world views revealed in the exemption process, and why he and the clinic may have been fighting the wrong battle all along. 

For more information: 

https://www.wcl.american.edu/impact/initiatives-programs/pijip/events/11th-annual-peter-a-jaszi-distinguished-lecture-series-delivered-by-peter-decherney/

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Talking Pro Bono IP on the USPTO’s Inventor Hour Program

Professors Phillips and Grossman appeared on lucky Episode 13 of the USPTO’s Inventor Hour to talk about the IP Clinic, its patent work and pro bono IP with PTAB Judge (and ’04 IP clinic alum) Chris Paulraj. Inventor Hour is a great new outreach initiative of the USPTO  geared toward educating independent inventors about the agency, the PTAB and patent issues.

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NALSA Native American Heritage Month Lunch Talk

On November 8, 2022, in celebration and honor of Native American Heritage month, NALSA hosted WCL Professors Vicki Phillips (Director, Glushko-Samuelson Intellectual Property Law Clinic) and Ezra Rosser (Federal Indian Law, Poverty Law, Property Law) for a conversation on the impacts of intellectual property law and Native American traditional art and cultural expressions.

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IP Clinic Students Present 6th Annual Tips and Tricks for Start-Ups

This gallery contains 4 photos.

Glushko-Samuelson IP Clinic Students presented a 6th annual IP Tips and Tricks program for startups on March 25th via Zoom for the AU Center for Innovation (AUCI) Incubator at American University’s Kogod School of Business. The AUCI entrepreneurs are either … Continue reading

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#PayItForward Alumni Profile: Kiara Ortiz ‘20 and Valérie Cambronne ‘20

From left: Kiara Ortiz ’20, Valérie Cambronne ’20

In January 2020, Kiara Ortiz ‘20 and Valérie Cambronne ‘20 started an organization called LegallyBlack. LegallyBlack’s mission is to create a more informed public by empowering and educating minority communities of color on the value of intellectual property protection.

As a Glushko-Samuelson Intellectual Property Law Clinic alumna, Kiara Ortiz ‘20, emphasizes how her experience in clinic inspired her to become an IP attorney and develop her organization. Ortiz states, “When Valérie and I graduated from WCL, we knew we wanted to figure out a way to use our degrees and passion for Intellectual Property law to empower creative artists, entrepreneurs, and inventors in minority communities. As a 2019-2020 student attorney in the IP Clinic, I experienced first-hand the value that intellectual property protection can bring to creative artists, entrepreneurs, and inventors, and through LegallyBlack, we hope to bridge the gap between intellectual property resources and minority communities of color.”

Since its founding, two additional IP Clinic students have since followed Ortiz and Cambronne into leadership positions in LegallyBlack: Raina Barbee ’21 (Associate Director) and Lashana Calloway ’22 (Community Outreach Coordinator). LegallyBlack launched its website in January 2022. You can also follow them on Instagram (@legallyblackip) to see the amazing work they’ve already done with middle school students in Miami, Florida.

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#PayItForward Alumni Profile: Ben Kessler (’20), Director of Congressional Affairs, National Endowment for the Arts

Ben Kessler
Ben Kessler

Ben Kessler is an intellectual property lawyer with ten years of federal government advocacy experience and a passion for live music. After graduating from Amherst College in 2007, Ben worked in the office of oversight and investigations in the United States Senate Committee on Aging. Following his time on the Hill, Ben joined Heather Podesta + Partners, now Invariant Government Relations. Ben then spent over six years at the Pew Charitable Trusts working on food safety policy.
 
With an eye towards combining his love for music and the arts with his expertise in advocacy, Ben enrolled at the American University Washington College of Law. There, Ben focused on intellectual property law and was a member of the Glushko-Samuelson Intellectual Property Law Clinic. While in school, Ben fortified his passion for protecting creators and spent his summers working for the Future of Music Coalition and Copyright Alliance.

Almost immediately following graduation, Ben joined the Biden for President campaign. During his nearly nine months with the campaign, among other work, Ben managed a team of intellectual property law volunteers, reviewed campaign-produced content for copyright, trademark, and right of publicity concerns, and enforced the campaign’s intellectual property rights online.

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Congrats to Clinic Students for Great Work Over the Summer!

As the Fall semester starts, it’s time to give applause to IP Clinic students who continued their hard work on behalf of their clients long past the end of Spring semester and into the summer. In these hot summer months, our students continued to fight trademark bullying, help documentarians evaluate fair use of photographs and videos, and assist entrepreneurs and local nonprofits seek trademarks for their valuable products and services.

A special applause deserved goes to four students who continued a difficult task into the summer. Michael Blumenthal, Harrison Neidish, Clemence Kim and Adam Wasinger spent the year representing musician Dr. Lydia Warren, an award-winning blues singer and bandleader, and now blues historian, in seeking the return of her domain name, lydiawarren.com, from a registrant in Asia.

When the registrant refused to response to their communication, the students engaged in extensive research of Ms. Warren’s many festivals, awards, interviews and her tours overseas. They learned the technical and dispute policies of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) and filed a Uniform Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) complaint seeking return of the domain name.

The Forum in Minneapolis agreed with the student’s concerns and transferred the domain name to Ms. Warren. Congratulations Adam, Clemence, Harrison and Mike for filing the Clinic’s first UDRP case, and for the Clinic’s first UDRP win!

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Congrats Clinic Student Jesse Spiegel for Your Testimony Before Copyright Office!

Congratulations to IP Clinic student Jesse Spiegel for testifying before the Copyright Office on April 21st in the Eighth Triennial Proceeding on the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) proceeding.  Jesse brought some special concerns before the Copyright Office and fielded some fascinating questions.  

spiegel

For months, Jesse and his Clinic partners Chelsea Kaminsky, Keyana Pusey and Hector Contreras, Jesse interviewed, researched and wrote extensive comments and reply comments asking the Copyright Office to allow educators working on online learning platforms to be able to use clips of movies and TV shows in their course materials. The team wrote these comments on behalf of the “Joint Educators” headed by Professor Peter Decherney and Dr. Rebecca Stein of the University of Pennsylvania and Dr. Katherine Sender of Cornell University. 

Jesse chose to testify due to his concerns.  He wanted the Copyright Office to share his observation that young people today communicate by video: “Our society relies on video for everything – we communicate through video – we FaceTime, we send gifs… younger people send snapchat videos… which often completely replace even speaking at all. When we want to learn how to do something, let’s say like cooking a meal or fixing an electronic, most people don’t open a recipe book anymore, or an instruction manual. We go on YouTube.”  He added: “now we have grown accustomed to working, socializing, and learning – online, using videos. So clearly effective education must use more videos than ever to match how we now function in society.” 

Jesse voiced his deep concern that the Copyright Office’s current exemptions only allow traditional educators to use clips within the four walls of K-12, college and university classrooms, but exclude the growing number of non-traditional educators working on online learning platforms. He noted that the current exemption “includes only a sliver of the educational experiences we are having online.”  

Jesse’s clear call to the Copyright Office stated: “we should be expanding access to education, not limiting it.”  He noted that there is nothing to fear from online learning platforms as they offer an array of protections for educational materials and any clips they may include.  Specifically, Jesse outlined that they work only with “registered learners,” feature “sophisticated digital protection measures” and limit access to “students currently enrolled in courses.”    

Jesse closed with an appeal to educational equity:  

“Let’s celebrate this expansion of educational access, this very real opportunity in front of us to address inequities that exist in our educational system, even by simply chipping away at them through this exemption, and provide learners outside the box of K-12 and accredited schooling means to have the same chance of commentary and critical thinking skills that comes from analysis of short clips of movies and tv shows.” 

Jesse then expertly fielded questions from senior Copyright Office attorneys about distinctions between entertainment and dedicated online learning platforms.  

Congratulations, Jesse, on your expert testimony and taking client representation to a new level! 

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IP Clinic Students Present 5th Annual Tips and Tricks for Start-Ups for Business School Entrepreneurs

Glushko-Samuelson IP Clinic Students presented a 5th annual IP Tips and Tricks program for startups on April 9th via Zoom for the AU Center for Innovation (AUCI) Incubator at American University’s Kogod School of Business.  The AUCI entrepreneurs are in the either at the initial stages of their startup ventures or in the process of building their businesses.  At the session they received key IP “tips and tricks” for their startups.

IP Clinic students Adam Wasinger, Chris Kuhman, Kassidy Schmitz, Raina Barbee, Hector Contreras and Chris Mtanos addressed copyright, trademark, patent, trade secrets  and other issues important to Kogod’s startup ventures in the annual training session.

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#PAYITFORWARD ALUMNI PROFILE: Nabila Aguele

Congratulations to IP Clinic alum Nabila Aguele!

INSEAD, the Business School for the World, has announced the appointment of Nabila (Isa-Odidi) Aguele MBA’14J to its Board of Directors, effective June 2021.  Nabila is an alum of the IP Clinic and also served as a Practitioner in Residence in the clinic after several years practicing patent law at Morrison and Foerster and Sonnenschein Nath and Rosenthal LLP (now Dentons.)

Nabila Aguele is of Nigerian origin and has called several countries home, including England, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the US, and Canada. After over a decade in the United States, her passion for Africa and desire to help drive sustainable impact and development on the Continent led her to move back to Nigeria as a Policy Advisor to the Federal Government in 2016.

Currently, Aguele is a Special Adviser to Nigeria’s Minister of Finance, Budget, and National Planning. She provides policy and strategy advice on international development cooperation, and on performance monitoring and evaluation for data-driven policy formulation and implementation. A strong advocate for women’s rights, Nabila is also supporting interventions at the intersection of gender and public financial management.

Nabila continues to be a strong supporter of the clinic and law school and a champion for balanced IP policies. She is also an accomplished artist and lives in Abuja with her husband and three children.

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