Stephen Y. Chow


Partner, Burns & Levinson LLP

AB, Harvard College
SM, Harvard University
JD, Columbia University

Areas of Interest
Competition Law, Electronic Commerce, Intellectual Property

Stephen Y. Chow is a partner of the Boston law firm, Burns & Levinson LLP, practicing in its business, business litigation and intellectual property departments.  Mr. Chow graduated from Harvard University with an A.B. in Physics and Philosophy cum laude and an S.M. in Applied Physics and from Columbia University with a J.D. as a Stone Scholar.  He is admitted to practice and practices in Massachusetts, New York and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

Applying a full spectrum of proprietary, including patent and privacy, rights in information, life sciences, technology and trade in contexts involving competition and entity governance law, for forty years, Mr. Chow has counseled and litigated for technology enterprises from start-up to multi-national in expanding their businesses and intellectual property portfolios and in resolving their disputes.  Having successfully managed parallel federal district court and International Trade Commission defenses against the industry leader in the early days of cellular telephony, he has continued to trouble-shoot for emerging enterprises ranging from their capitalization and recapitalization to assertion and defense of their patents in court and before the Patent Trial and Appeals Board.

Mr. Chow served twenty years ago on the influential drafting committees of the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws on the proposed UCC Article 2B (Licenses) and the nearly universally adopted Uniform Electronic Transactions Act and remains active in developing legislation involving the convergence of commercial and intellectual property law.  Among his recent projects are the Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets and the Uniform Employee and Student Online Protection Act.  He serves on the Conference’s Technology [Legislation Editorial] Committee, its current Study Committee on Identity Management in Electronic Commerce, as well as its Standby Committee on U.N. Convention on E-Commerce.  He was a member of the U.S. delegation to the U.N. Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) Working Group VI (Secured Transactions – Intellectual Property Supplement).

Mr. Chow is an elected and active member of the American Law Institute, consulting on the “principles” projects on data privacy, international intellectual property law and software licensing and the “restatement” projects on conflict of laws, consumer contracts, copyright, employment, and international commercial arbitration law.  He wrote the legal treatise, E-Commerce and Communications, has revised and updated the treatises International Computer Law and Law of the Internet, and has edited and written the prize-winning Data Security and Privacy in Massachusetts.  Mr. Chow taught from 1995-2013 the Suffolk Law School courses, “Litigating Technology Disputes” and “Counseling Technology-Leading Emerging Enterprises” and will teach the Boston University School of Law course, “Intellectual Property Rights and Commerce in the Global ‘Cloud’.”

Mr. Chow is currently a co-chair of the American Bar Association Intellectual Property Law Section’s Trade Secrets Committee and a member of the Association’s Cybersecurity Legal Task Force.


2 credits

This course, open to LLM in American Law and LLM in Intellectual Property Law students, will help participants appreciate and understand how the Internet or "Cloud" has introduced into everyday life an ever-expanding and evolving range of proprietary claims on digital information and its communication. We will cover the role of traditional industrial property (patents and trademarks) and of authors' rights (copyrights), as well as of internationally expanding rights in "confidential" information (trade secrets) -- which are amplified by the primacy of online "contracts" and licensing. We will also explore the extended range of quasi-proprietary interests such as privacy, publicity and "freedom of speech" and regulating factors such as consumer protection, e-commerce, competition and telecommunications policies (standards, Internet governance, Net Neutrality). While the subject matter will be examined in systemic appreciation from the perspective of U.S. and international transactions and enforcement, foreign-trained students will be encouraged to share insights on the national laws of their home countries. Grades will be based on a take-home final examination with a reasonable choice of covered subject matter, along with consideration of class participation. PREREQUISITE: None, as the course is directed to systemic understanding, but exposure to any of the mentioned subject matter would be helpful.

SPRG 2018: LAW JD 978 A1 , Jan 22nd to Apr 23rd 2018
Days Start End Credits Instructors Bldg
Mon 6:30 pm 8:30 pm 2 Stephen Y. Chow LAW
SPRG 2019: LAW JD 978 A1 , Jan 28th to Apr 22nd 2019
Days Start End Credits Instructors Bldg
Mon 6:30 pm 8:30 pm 2 Stephen Y. Chow
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