Category Archives: Ethics

Markets and morality (part 1)

Note: This is the first of six blog posts in which we review Nathan B. Oman’s book The Dignity of Commerce: Markets and the Moral Foundation of Contract Law, University of Chicago Press (2016). Nate Oman begins his beautiful book … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Ethics, Law | 1 Comment

Spring break reading list

Here is what we are reading over our spring break: 1. Peter Thiel (with Blake Masters), Zero to one: notes on startups, or how to build the future. We teach business law and are currently writing several chapters of a … Continue reading

Posted in Academia, Bayesian Reasoning, Economics, Ethics, Law | 2 Comments

Product placement 101

Matt Thomas just brought this beautiful TV ad to our attention via his blog. The ad in question is composed of a series of movie scenes featuring the iconic Rolex watch. (In several of these classic scenes, the actors actually refer to the … Continue reading

Posted in Deception, Ethics, Law | Leave a comment

Class No. 7 (Right and Wrong)

Thus far this semester, we have studied sources of law as well as three major areas of private law: contracts, torts, and property. In our next class, by contrast, we will focus on the extralegal domains of ethics and morality: … Continue reading

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Class No. 6 (The Law of Ideas)

During the previous two weeks, we have surveyed two major areas of business law: contracts and torts. In summary, the law of contracts tells us when our promises are legally enforceable, while the law of torts tells us when we … Continue reading

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Class No. 5 (Lies and Deception)

When was the last time you were lied to, or when was the last time you told a lie? In our next class, we will study the law and ethics of deception. Generally speaking, it is morally wrong to tell … Continue reading

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Class No. 4 (Contracts and Vampires)

In our next class, we will consider the law and ethics of two separate promises depicted in the movie “The Social Network”–the informal coding agreement between the Winklevoss twins and Mark Zuckerberg as well as the informal partnership between Zuckerberg … Continue reading

Posted in Ethics, Law | 2 Comments

Virtue signalling in the age of Trump

As libertarians, we have always supported open borders as a matter of principle, but we are somewhat amused though not surprised by all the virtue signalling and moral grandstanding being displayed by our academic colleagues against Trump’s new immigration policy. … Continue reading

Posted in Bayesian Reasoning, Ethics, Law | 6 Comments

Class No. 3 (Due Process and the Burden of Proof)

In our previous class, we discussed the law and ethics of Facemash, a short-lived website Mark Zuckerberg created in the fall of ’03—a few months before he launched the beta version of Facebook. This week, we will re-enact Zuckerberg’s “Ad … Continue reading

Posted in Academia, Ethics, Law | 2 Comments

The Ethics of Facebook Live

What legal or ethical obligations, if any, do social media companies like Facebook owe to the public at large? Last year, for example, at least 57 violent or illegal acts—including shootings, burglaries, and beatings—were transmitted via live-video platforms like Facebook Live. According to Mary Anne Franks, a law … Continue reading

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