Regulation by Contract, Regulation by Machine

16 Pages Posted: 29 Apr 2004

See all articles by Margaret Jane Radin

Margaret Jane Radin

University of Toronto - Faculty of Law; University of Michigan Law School


Two potentially widespread phenomena, mass standardized contracts and digital rights management systems, could have dramatic impact on how the law of property and contract regulates the distribution of intellectual property. This paper argues these phenomena motivate a more careful consideration of (1) their effect on the knowledge-generation incentives that underlie intellectual property, (2) which aspects of the present property and contract regimes are default, waivable rules and which are inalienable entitlements, and (3) whether legislative approval of regulation by machine is best interpreted as a revision of the law of intellectual property or as an attempt to undermine it.

JEL Classification: K11, K12

Suggested Citation

Radin, Margaret Jane, Regulation by Contract, Regulation by Machine. Available at SSRN:

Margaret Jane Radin (Contact Author)

University of Toronto - Faculty of Law ( email )

78 and 84 Queen's Park
Toronto, Ontario M5S 2C5

University of Michigan Law School ( email )

625 South State Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1215
United States
505-314-6516 (Phone)

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics