Regulatory Issues and Challenges Presented by Virtual Currencies

Public discussion regarding virtual currencies tends to center around concerns with familiar themes: new financial technologies are little understood, difficult to regulate in their decentralized forms, and their anonymity and lack of government oversight currently allow significant misuse of virtual currencies in the black economy for purposes including money laundering and terrorist finance. These worries are not baseless, considering that virtual currencies markets are only recently attempting to legitimize their image as bona fide economic exchanges. The origins of bitcoin […] (More →)

Can Lobbyists Pass the Declaration of (Director) Independence to Sit On Corporate Boards?

Corporate boards employ independent directors to solve many corporate governance problems, including monitoring related-party or conflicted transactions, protecting minority shareholders against a dominant majority, setting the company’s executive pay, and auditing the company’s financial reports. From these responsibilities stems the typical definition for independent directors: “one who has no need or inclination to stay in the good graces of management, and who will be able to speak out, inside and outside the boardroom, in the face of management’s misdeeds in […] (More →)

When Privacy Meets Politics, Privacy Has a Price Tag: The FCC Broadband Regulation Rollback

A Primer on ISPs: Our Gateway to the Internet Internet service providers (“ISPs”) are our gateway to the Internet. In this capacity, they have the ability to collect, store, and share an “unprecedented breadth” of personal information about consumers, including consumers’ precise geolocation, browsing history, and content of communications. Consumers have very limited, if any, choice regarding their ISP usage; in many regions, ISPs “enjoy near-monopolistic power inside their service areas.” A recent FCC report contained data showing that as […] (More →)

Benefits and Drawbacks of the 2017 NBA CBA

In 2011, the National Basketball Association (NBA) and the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) failed to agree on a new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA). The failed negotiations, led by NBA Commissioner David Stern and NBPA President Derek Fisher, resulted in a lockout that ultimately shortened the season from 82 to 66 games. Luckily, this year both parties were able to come to an agreement without infringing on the season, and a new CBA was ratified in late December 2016. Unless […] (More →)

Amid Terrorists’ Use of Social Media, Where Does a Social Media Platform’s Right to Ensure Free Speech End?

The Islamic State (ISIS) and other terror groups have revolutionized terror enlistment through their use of social media to fundraise, recruit, indoctrinate, and train new recruits. ISIS’s social media outreach in particular, especially through Twitter, has been the impetus for people from around the world to join ISIS’s ranks and plan and carry out attacks in their home countries. For instance, ISIS has specifically targeted women and girls as recruits through social media. In fact, the largest U.S. technology companies […] (More →)

In the Business of Litigating: Legal and Ethical Concerns Facing the Commercial Litigation Financing Industry

It is no secret in both the legal and business communities just how expensive litigation can be. In 2015, larger US companies were maintaining, on average, a litigation budget of roughly $11.6 million in order to cover their expected costs for the year. The changing nature of litigation, particularly the rise in scope of e-discovery, has resulted in an uptrend in these numbers in recent years. As companies are increasingly finding these costs to be too excessive, they are looking […] (More →)

Appraisal Triggers: Can They Really Take a Deal off the Table?

Recent cases in the Delaware Chancery Courts have made bringing appraisal actions more attractive. In fact, certain funds have found the remedy very profitable and specialize in purchasing shares and seeking appraisal. But why are appraisal rights, an old concept, resurging as a valuable discussion topic in drafting a merger agreement; moreover, why can it actually be a highly negotiated condition? Appraisal Cap An appraisal cap is a condition negotiated in a merger agreement that allows a purchaser to walk […] (More →)

The Shared Economy and the New Paradigm of Property Rights

A new digital economy has given rise to platform business premised on the notion of sharing, dubbed the “sharing economy.” This phenomenon is driven by technology that allows entities, either individuals or organizations, to share the use of a physical asset or provide a service. Characteristics of the shared economy style businesses include a technology-enabled platform, a preference for access over ownership, peer-to-peer sharing of personal assets, ease of access, increased social interaction, collaborative consumption, and openly shared user feedback. […] (More →)

Can Robo-Advisors Meet the Fiduciary Standard?

The Emergence of Personal Investing Platforms A robo-advisor is an online wealth management service that provides financial advice and portfolio management using algorithmic formulas, eliminating the need for human financial planners. These programs, the most popular of which include Betterment and Wealthfront, perform a multitude of mundane tasks such as portfolio rebalancing and tax-loss harvesting that have previously required human capital. Distrust of the wealth management industry in the aftermath of the financial crisis coupled with rapid technological advances primed […] (More →)

It’s March Madness. Who is (Patent) Dancing?

No one seems to completely understand the “patent dance” provisions of the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act (BPCIA). On March 1, the U.S. District Court of Delaware dismissed a complaint filed by Genentech against Amgen seeking declaratory judgment that Amgen failed to comply with the disclosure requirements of the BPCIA. After the FDA accepted Amgen’s application for a biosimilar (the biologics equivalent to generics of small molecule pharmaceuticals) of Genentech’s Avastin, Amgen provided Genentech a copy of it’s abbreviated […] (More →)

About CBLR

Columbia Business Law Review is the first legal periodical at a national law school to be devoted solely to the publication of articles focusing on the interaction of the legal profession and the business community. The review publishes three issues yearly, which involve students in the editing of leading articles in business law, as well as the production of student-written notes.