Announcing New MOOC: Internet Giants

Professor Randal Picker at MOOC video shoot

We are happy to announce that Randal C. Picker, the James Parker Hall Distinguished Service Professor of Law, will be teaching a new online course called “Internet Giants: The Law and Economics of Media Platforms.” This class will be available on Coursera beginning July 13 and is aimed at a general audience curious about the intersections of modern technology, the internet, and the law.

In areas as diverse as copyright, antitrust, patents, privacy, speech, and the regulation of networks, the law powerfully shapes technology. Meanwhile, technology often establishes the framework in which governments interact with their citizens, both in allowing speech and blocking it, and in establishing the boundaries between private life and public.

The course topics include:

  • the U.S. and European Union cases against Microsoft that arose when competition between the free-standing personal computer and the Internet world was at its height;
  • the fight over Google Search and how Google has exercised its power;
  • the complex legal infrastructure of smartphones and tablets and the ongoing patent and copyright litigation among manufacturers;
  • the debate over network neutrality;
  • the rise of peer-to-peer music sharing, and the copyright issues and litigation that have followed;
  • the road from government regulation of the radio spectrum to the development of cable TV, digital television, and the challenges faced by emerging video distribution technologies;
  • and the rise of the ebook and the era of the mediated book.

Though envisioned as a seven-week course, Internet Giants will be our first on-demand online course offering, fully self-paced and without prescribed start dates and deadlines. This class will also provide an opportunity to experiment with small, private communities in the context of a large-scale class.

Sign up to be notified when the course is available at