This course introduces students to a various set of legal norms which regulate today’s digital world.

The digital realm is an essential part of our everyday lives – and of the global economy. Since the widespread adoption of the Internet in 1990s, the need to regulate certain aspects of digital interactions became apparent. Yet, developing rules which could be universally applied proved to be a challenging task.

One of the areas of law which saw a change due to widespread adoption of technology is contract law. The course will explore the core requirements for entering into digital contracts, as well as different ways in which advancements in technology can be used to facilitate contract negotiation, adoption, interpretation and enforcement. The course will also introduce students to core European instruments regulating sales of digital goods and services, preparing them to work with the sale of digital assets. This will also be supplanted by the overview of the rules on fair marketing of products, which remain highly relevant in the digital world.

With the growth of online businesses and platforms, questions of consumer protection are becoming more pressing by the day. The course will strive to give students a good overview of European regulation in the area.

One of the core modules of the course will explore the relevance and application of intellectual property rights in the digital world. By introducing students to international and EU regulation of intellectual property, the course will enable students to gain the understanding of the importance of this field for the market actors. The primary focus will be on copyright law, where students will be introduced to core rights that copyright holders have. Following this, students will be introduced to the specific ways in which copyright law regulates protection of computer programs and databases. This will allow students to provide legal advice to a wide range of companies working with digital assets. Lastly, in the field of intellectual property, the course will strive to give students an overview of basic rules of trademark law.

Protection of personal data – and privacy in general – remains a core topic when designing digital products and services. Students will be introduced to core regulations pertaining to this field, with a large focus on General Data Protection Regulation.

Lastly, the course will introduce students to topics pertaining to regulation of online platforms. It will introduce students to some of the core rules on net neutrality and cross-border portability of digital content. It will also explore the system of intermediary liability, outlining the cases in which digital platforms can be held liable for user’s illegal conduct.

The course will have a heavy emphasis on challenges posed by new technologies, such as machine learning and AI. Practical implications will be considered by students, in the light of existing and proposed regulations. The course will have a heavy emphasis on case studies and other forms of practical work.  

Course content

The course will content the following topics:

  • Digital contracts. Sale of digital goods and services.
  • Consumer protection and fair marketing of products online.
  • Copyright. Subject matter and scope of protection. Exclusive rights. Scope of international treaties.
  • Protection of computer programs. Database protection.
  • Trademark law. Digital branding.
  • Introduction to privacy. GDPR. Personal data. Core terms.
  • Legal basis for processing of personal data under GDPR.
  • Digital platforms. Liability rules and intermediary liability. Net neutrality and cross-border content portability.


This is an excerpt from the complete course description for the course. If you are an active student at BI, you can find the complete course descriptions with information on eg. learning goals, learning process, curriculum and exam at portal.bi.no. We reserve the right to make changes to this description.