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Fall 2007 Symposium – Leviathan’s Network: Municipal Wireless and Civil Liberties

Friday, November 2, 2007

Despite uncertainties in the municipal wireless market, cities across the country continued to build their own wireless (Wi-Fi) networks. This symposium explored the unique legal questions raised by these new networks, with particular attention to users’ First Amendment and privacy rights.

Time and Location
1:00 – 4:15 p.m.
New York University School of Law
Vanderbilt Hall, Greenberg Lounge
40 Washington Square South

This event is free and open to the public. Photo I.D. is required for admission.
CLE Credits in the area of Professional Practice will be offered for full event attendance.

Symposium Schedule
1:15 – 1:30 p.m GREETINGS AND OPENING REMARKS
1:30 – 2:15 p.m PANEL I: CHALLENGES TO OPERATING A MUNICIPAL NETWORK
This panel will consider the various legal and fiscal structures municipalities utilize to establish and control their wireless networks: from contracting with a private provider, to creating the network within a department of the city.  The panelists will discuss the costs and benefits of the different models, and how each achieves oversight and accountability.  The panel will also explore the motivations of municipalities in establishing these networks, including an analysis of the market for consumer broadband in American cities.
2:15 -2:30 p.m COFFEE BREAK
2:30 – 4:00 p.m PANEL II: CIVIL LIBERTIES ON A GOVERNMENT OWNED NETWORK
As public entities, municipalities are bound by Constitutional requirements that differ from those applied to private network owners. This panel will consider the implications of  user privacy and First Amendment rights when municipalities own or operate a portion of the communications infrastructure.
4:00 – 4:15 p.m CLOSING REMARKS

Confirmed panelists include:
Kevin Bankston
Staff Attorney
Electronic Frontier Foundation

Nicole Ozer
Technology and Civil Liberties Policy Director
ACLU of Northern California

Casey Lide
Principal Attorney
Baller Herbst Law Group

Carol Ellison
Contributing Editor
Muniwireless.com

Alexander H. Southwell
Of Counsel
Gibson, Dunn & Cruthcer

 

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