The use of "free" - 17 November 2010

When: 17/11/2010

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A meeting of the SCL Thames Valley Group

Andrew Priest
, Partner, Pitmans

Mark Webber
, Partner, Osborne Clarke
Neil Brown, Solicitor, Group Legal, Vodafone Group Services Limited

To a society in which 'copyright' is synonymous with 'restricted', the concept of "free" can seem radical - frightening to some, empowering to others.

Led by legal experts experienced in advising on the use "free" in a practical setting, SCL Thames Valley's inaugural meeting will explore free/open source software, permissive licensing, and the concept of commons and the public domain.

Speaker's details:

Mark Webber is a technology transactions partner and heads Osborne Clarke's national technology group and chairs its International Technology Practice Group. Mark advises in the crossover space between IP and IT in the Digital Business space and his core practice focuses on scenarios where intellectual property or technology needs to be leveraged for business success.

Mark spent 3 years working in Silicon Valley and has considerable experience advising on innovative technology transactions whether online or when creating or implementing technology rich solutions.

In Legal Business's Legal Experts 2010, Mark comes "highly recommended"
as a legal advisor in the Information Technology practice area.  He is recognised in the 2010 edition of Who's Who Legal: The International Who's Who of Business Lawyers as a leading expert in internet, ecommerce & data protection.

Neil Brown is a solicitor, qualified in England and Wales, with substantial international (European and worldwide) experience in drafting advice and developing policy relating to copyright and innovation stimulus, liability of intermediaries, and a wide range of complex digital technologies.

Neil's current focus is on the need to stimulate innovation in the development of communications platforms and services, to aid the increase and transfer of knowledge within society, through the balanced use of intellectual property rights, and is fascinated by the interactions of law, technology and society. Neil is currently studying the role of copyright in a digital/information society, critically examining the oft-stated need for copyright, examining its success in achieving its stated objectives, and, where necessarily, proposing reform.

Neil has particular expertise in alternative intellectual property strategies promoting the sharing of knowledge, dealing with open source / Free software and collaborative/community licensing, and is seen as taking a grounded and yet innovative, practical approach, and is regularly consulted for his views on this area.

Neil has a sound technical and practical knowledge in a wide range of fields relating to communications and computer science, and is regularly sought to present to technical, as well as legal, audiences.

Neil currently works as an advisory lawyer for Vodafone Group, focusing on legal issues related to copyright (licensing and reform) and "anti-piracy", open source licensing, network security and lawful interception and computer science and communications (telecoms / IP / cellular) technologies.

Administration notes:
The cost of attendance at this meeting is £25 + VAT (£29.38) for SCL members and £40 + VAT (£47.00) for non-members. VAT invoices will be issued to all delegates.

If you wish to attend this meeting please book online or email and request an invoice. Fees can be paid by cheque (cheques should be made payable to "Society for Computers and Law" please), Mastercard, Visa, Switch or bank transfer. All invoices for attendance at this meeting must be paid within 30 days of the invoice date although payment before the date of the meeting would be appreciated.

Non-members wishing to join the Society are entitled to membership of the Society valid for 12 months from the date of payment including full access to the content of the SCL web site, 6 copies of the SCL magazine "Computers & Law" plus notification of future SCL events. The cost of an annual SCL membership is £95.00.

If you have any queries about your application for this meeting or SCL membership please contact : Caroline Gould, Tel: 0117 9237393, Email:

Under the Solicitors Regulation Authority CPD scheme, ILEX's CPD Scheme and Barristers – new and established practitioner programmes this meeting is accredited with 1 hour and 30 minutes.

Booking terms and conditions: Application online or by email constitutes a firm booking and an undertaking to pay the meeting attendance fee. Cancellations will not be accepted (and refunds made) unless received in the Society's offices in Bristol at least one week before the date of the relevant event or meeting.

It may be necessary for reasons beyond the control of the Society for Computers and Law to change the content/timing of the programme and/or speakers.

Society for Computers and Law  A company limited by guarantee 1133537  Registered Charity No. 266331  VAT Registration No. 115 4840 85  Registered in England and Wales  Registered office: 10 Hurle Crescent, Clifton, Bristol, BS8 2TA.

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