Will Enterprise 2.0 Mean Law 2.0 ?
Yoh hotshot IP lawyer- ever heard of crowdsourcing? Ready for an innovation jam? How about a mashup?
If you don't know what these terms mean- you better find out. Because the very nature of work is changing before our eyes. The tools of the Web are being used as part of an amorphous collaborative process- where nothing is static- not the questions asked or the answers formulated.
And what role for IP law and IP lawyers in this new world? I don't pretend to know. But I am willing to guess that if there is place for the law and lawyers in this new world of work then the law must fundamentally change.
US IP law assumes a static rather than dynamic world. A world where it is important to clearly identify authors or inventors and the products of their mental effort. A world that offers rewards to those who jealously guard certain information as proprietary. How will existing legal doctrine adapt to circumstances where authorship or inventorship is ambiguous or perhaps indeterminate?
From a larger perspective this dynamic process challenges traditional notions of lawyer and client. In a static world the person with a problem pays a professional to use specialilzed skills, access to special information and a specialized vocabulary to solve that problem. In the dynamic world everyone has access to information, an archaic vocabulary slows down the pace of change and clients expect to actively contribute to the process of generating solutions.
Welcome to the future.
Are we ready?