MSBA Computer Law Section
September 12, 2006
Kari Wangensteen (Chair), Chris Hilberg (Vice-Chair), Damien Riehl (Secretary), Vanessa Beardsley (Acting Treasurer) (via telephone), Tom Sheran (Immediate Past Chair), Katheryn Andresen, Miguel Azar, Steve Bern, Jim Blomquist, Kevin Brady, Chip Brink, Steve Buckingham, John Carney, Alecia Kirkevold, Michael Lindeman, Michael Luzum, Allen Oh, Carolyn Sandberg, John Taft, Dan Tysver, Rey Waedekin
B. Excused Absences:
Chris Evans and Kendra Richgels
II. Call to Order
Call to order at 11:40
III. Approval of Minutes of Annual Meeting
Mr. Riehl moves; Mr. Hilberg seconds. Approved.
IV. Treasurer’s Report
Vanessa Beardsley reported that our balance is $5,063.71, as of June 30, 2006. The dues received since the month of June are not reflected in this amount.
A. Nominations/Bylaws - Chip Brink
Miguel Azar agreed to assist with the Nominations/Bylaws committee.
Co-Chairs: Kevin Brady, Alecia Kirkevold, and Damien Riehl
Ms. Andresen moved that co-chairs respond regarding the availability of (1) the MSBA’s capability of hosting a blog or (2) using an external service (e.g., Typepad, Blogspot, Blogger, etc.).
MSBA has two blogs, hosted externally on Typepad. Accordingly, the Computer Law Section will likely also use an external service.
C. Noontime CLE – (Chair Sought)
Like last year, Noontime CLEs will be held weekly, at the tail end of meetings.
Ms. Wangensteen asked for volunteer to chair, but no response was provided.
D. Case Law – Jim Blomquist
Mr. Blomquist reported that he would be happy to serve under someone who might want to serve as chair. No one sought the chair, so Mr. Blomquist will remain in that position.
Jim outlined several cases of interest to our members.
E. Legislative – Allen Oh
Mr. Oh has agreed to serve as chair and will provide a report at our next meeting.
F. Membership/Student Outreach – Steve Buckingham
John Taft has agreed to join Membership/Student Outreach Committee.
Mr. Buckingham is talking with law-school placement directors. Members who would like to volunteer can feel free to contact Mr. Buckingham.
G. Website – Michael Luzum
Mr. Luzum has agreed to serve again as chair
There was discussion of whether we should include a popup to ask visitors about their experience with the site. Kate suggested that any notification should not be a popup, since many users turn off their popups. It was suggested that perhaps a survey be designed through Surveymonkey, which the section has used in the past.
H. Technology Roundtable - Dan Tysver
1. October Topic: Outsourcing Legal Services (E.g., Target)
Outsourcing Legal Services topic affects both in-house and external counsel.
It was discussed that the FTC did a study, and while there is a presumed cost savings, the actual savings are must less (after sending local manager, overview, etc.). Average billable hour rate for outsourced legal work is $60–70 per hour. Salaries for Indian law-school graduates is around $6,000. In addition, there is a question as to whether these practices would constitute a Multi-Disciplinary Practice
2. October Meeting
Even though the section will have its CLI on October 17, we will meet on October 10 meeting in lieu of a meeting in December (when we will not meet).
I. Contracts Committee (Chair sought)
Mr. Tysver and Mr. Waedekin have agreed to work under another chair. Ms. Wangensteen stated that she will try to find a chair.
J. Annual Meeting – Chris Hilberg
Ideas are incubating, though no formal work has yet begun.
K. 2006 CLI – Kari Wangensteen
The next CLI will be in October and will feature some great speakers. Thus far, we are running behind on attendance (58 this year, versus 78 last year). An e-mail reminder will go out to our section, and there will be a second mailing of brochure. Ms. Wangensteen will request permission from chair of Business Law section members to notify their members. Traditionally, the CLI has seen a lot of walk-in attendees.
L. 2007 CLI - Chris Hilberg
Although it is more than a year away, ideas for next year’s CLI are similarly incubating.
VI. Old Business
A. MSBA Representative – Allen Oh
First Meeting of the MSBA is on Friday. Last year, the board had three or four meetings. Its work involved budgeting and appointments of various boards (e.g., professional responsibility). Mr. Oh was involved with legislative committee.
The MSBA considered changing budgeting from per-use service charges (e.g., price per e-mail) to a flat fee. Mr. Sheran noted that he believed that that change has gone through; will still charge $.04 per e-mail, but the remaining itemized services will not be charged. We have not been asked to raise our dues, so we presume the MSBA is taking it out of their funds. It is a great help to each section. Mr. Oh will check to see if that has been created.
B. Election of Officers
Steve Lieske has accepted at a position in
. Historically, when a board vacancy appears, everyone else has been bumped up a slot.
Mr. Brink will check with bylaws to determine the process for electing Ms. Beardsley as Treasurer.
VII. New Business
A. MSBA Compensation Policy & Reimbursement
The MSBA’s new proposed compensation and reimbursement policy was discussed. It appears unclear whether the funds will be taken from sections or from the MSBA. Mr. Blomquist noted that in the past, our section has reimbursed members for out-of-pocket expenses, and Mr. Blomquist does not think that those persons should be paid for their time. Ms. Sandberg noted that some firms provide compensation for drafting articles, so the MSBA should be certain that people are not doubly compensated. Ms. Wangensteen affirmed the section’s stance that we are comfortable with reimbursing out-of-pocket expenses, but compensating for the time is not acceptable. The new policy looks acceptable because that is what we have always done. Ms. Wangensteen will provide the MSBA with our position.
B. Focus of 2006-07 Year
1. Patent Subcommittee
Mr. Bern suggested creating a patent committee. He is interested in discussing issues with a patent bent (e.g., patent trolls). Mr. Tysver moved that our section form a patent chair subcommittee chaired by Mr. Bern. Ms. Andresen seconds. Motion passed
Mr. Blomquist suggested that the committee make a presentation at the Noontime CLE. Mr. Hilberg seconded. Ms. Sandberg suggested collaboration with MIPLA to ensure that efforts are not duplicated. Ms. Andresen suggested that it be an “IP” section, not limited to patents — but the amendment was withdrawn. There was discussion that this section engages in a great deal of discussion of copyright and trademark matters, but patents issues are less represented.
2. Section Name Change
Mr. Sheran re-asserted the belief that the Computer Law Section should consider changing its name to the Technology Law Section, which would reflect our expanded focus on technologies beyond what is traditionally considered to be a “computer.” This sentiment was met with general agreement, though no formal action was passed.
Adjourned at 12:50 p.m.
Submitted: Damien Riehl, Secretary