Disclosing Big Data
Indiana University Maurer School of Law
February 20, 2014
This Article reveals that the law is channeling producers of “big data” towards maintaining their most innovative work as trade secrets. “Big data” refers to a new industrial and scientific phenomenon that holds the potential to transform diverse industries — from medicine, to energy, to online services. At the heart of this phenomenon are innovative and complex practices that enable experts to shape featureless digital records into valuable information products. The conclusion that these big data practices are likely to be maintained as trade secrets is worrisome for familiar reasons: the law generally prefers to induce technological disclosure in order to serve the goal of promoting progress. Beyond this general concern, the non-disclosure of big data practices threatens innovation in unique ways that are particularly insidious. The cause of this problem, and possibly its resolution, lies in the interplay between patent, trade secret, and copyright law.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 44
Keywords: big data, copyright, intellectual property, knowhow, database protectionworking papers series
Date posted: November 24, 2013 ; Last revised: February 24, 2014
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