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Course 2022-2023 a.y.


Department of Law

Course taught in English

Go to class group/s: 31

ACME (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  IUS/08)
Course Director:

Classes: 31 (I sem.)

Class-group lessons delivered  on campus

Suggested background knowledge

Although there is no formal prerequisite, it is strongly suggested for students to have a solid knowledge of the main categories of public law and European law.

Mission & Content Summary

Following the advent and spread of communication and information technology, this course has a twofold goal: on the one hand, to examine the statute law, case law and legal theory related to traditional means of communication (radio, television, theatre, press, cinema), on the other hand, to provide students with an overview of the emerging issues connected to the rise of digital technologies and in particular the implications of the rise of the Internet for the protection of human rights.


The origins of the Internet and the debate on the regulation of cyberspace

Internet and jurisdiction. Between globalization and localization

Freedom of expression in Europe and in the US

The content and limits of freedom of expression: hate speech and disinformation as case study

The right to access to the Internet as a new human right

Who controls the Internet? The ISPs legal regime

Content moderation and ISP liability

Audiovisual Media Services and their regulation in Europe

The right to privacy and data protection in Europe

The right to be forgotten: privacy vs. freedom of information

Bridging the transatlantic gap: privacy vs. public security in the Schrems case

Data protection in the age of emergency: contact tracing apps as case study


Copyright enforcement on the Internet

Blockchain and artificial intelligence: legal issues

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILO)
At the end of the course student will be able to...

Describe why the rise of the Internet has given rise to unprecedented legal challenges; identify the legal categories and fundamental rights mainly affected by the digital revolution and recognize the reasons why the Internet made an impact; summarize cases and regulatory stances taken by courts and lawmakers as reaction to the rise of the Internet; assert normative claims regarding how the law should tackle emerging legal issues in the digital age; estimate the possible impact of regulatory stances in light of the characteristics of the digital public sphere.

At the end of the course student will be able to...
  • understand the main legal challenges generated by the rise of the Internet in terms of human rights protection; 
  • read, understand and report on the case law of European and national courts on freedom of expression, right to privacy and data protection, copyright enforcement;
  • discuss legal issues emerging in the context of the digital age, having regard to the role and legal regime of digital platforms and to the non-territorial nature of the Internet.

Teaching methods
  • Face-to-face lectures
  • Guest speaker's talks (in class or in distance)
  • Case studies /Incidents (traditional, online)
  • Group assignments
  • Interactive class activities (role playing, business game, simulation, online forum, instant polls)
  • Participation in external competitions

Guest speakers’ talks will include lectures given by experts and professionals working in the IT industry.

Case studies will be discussed at the beginning of each class in order to introduce the subject of the relevant lectures. Students will be asked to complete a group assignments (e.g., writing a brief to argue certain points in the context of a possible lawsuit and discuss them during classes). Students will also be required to write a piece on a selected subject as part of an online forum.

Assessment methods
  Continuous assessment Partial exams General exam
  • Oral individual exam
  •     x
  • Group assignment (report, exercise, presentation, project work etc.)
  • x    
  • Active class participation (virtual, attendance)
  • x    

    The final oral exam will attribute 18/30 points and will assess students' ability to comment on the legal issues discussed throughout the course.
    Group assignments will award 12/30 points and will test students' ability to read, understand and report on cases as well as to make a case and prepare briefs or other written court documents.


    The final oral exam will attribute 100% of the final grade and will assess students' ability to comment on the legal issues discussed throughout the course, as well as to read, understand and report on cases.

    Teaching materials

    Students will be tested on the materials available on Blackboard and on the textbook: 


    O. Pollicino, M. Bassini, G. De Gregorio, Introduction to Internet Law: Protection of Human Rights in Cyberspace, Milan, 2021


    Students will be tested on the textbook:


    O. Pollicinio, Judicial Protection of Fundamental Rights on the Internet. A Road Towards Digital Constitutionalism?, Oxford, 2021

    Last change 26/07/2022 08:13