One of the great things I’ve been involved with at BUSL has been the Journal of Science and Technology Law (JOSTL). Other than being an organization with a great place for studying (and to escape to a private room in the Tower with a PS3 for “research purposes”), JOSTL has been the source of some of my most fulfilling work as a law student. Doing tech checks for a Top-20 Intellectual Property Law Journal can be somewhat tedious as a 2L but, deep down, knowing that the work was going to advance new ideas in the intellectual marketplace was rewarding in itself.
Recently, JOSTL chose to publish my 2L note in the Spring 2010 issue. This will be my second publication through the journal as a law student (for the first, a case update with more glaring typos than I care to admit, click here). The note focuses on the economic valuation of EULA terms and addresses some of the policy concerns with such a course of action. Most importantly, it leads with a strip from one of my favorite webcomics, xkcd. Obviously, a law journal focused on intellectual property rights is going to be very hesitant to re-run someone else’s artwork without explicit permission. However, Randall Munroe, the author of xkcd, graciously agreed to allow the comic to run with my note.
Sometimes, focusing on the peas makes the steak that much better. I’m always thankful for small victories like these because it makes the tedious, or the mundane, or the unnecessarily complicated much easier. Sometimes, the law is an exercise in involuntary conformity, but being able to make your work your own in this kind of way is always going to be a cathartic release for me.