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Contracts Keyed to Ayres
Christopher Specht v. Netscape Communications Corporation
Citation:306 F.3d 17.
ProfessorMelissa A. Hale
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- The Brief Prologue provides necessary case brief introductory information and includes:
- Topic: Identifies the topic of law and where this case fits within your course outline.
- Parties: Identifies the cast of characters involved in the case.
- Procedural Posture & History: Shares the case history with how lower courts have ruled on the matter.
- Case Key Terms, Acts, Doctrines, etc.: A case specific Legal Term Dictionary.
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- The Case Brief is the complete case summarized and authored in the traditional Law School I.R.A.C. format. The Pro case brief includes:
- Brief Facts: A Synopsis of the Facts of the case.
- Rule of Law: Identifies the Legal Principle the Court used in deciding the case.
- Facts: What are the factual circumstances that gave rise to the civil or criminal case? What is the relationship of the Parties that are involved in the case. Review the Facts of this case here:
The Defendant (Netscape) listed several internet service software products for free download on their site. Plaintiffs (Specht and others) are class-action representatives of a class of consumers who downloaded some of the Defendant’s programs. Consumers seeking to download programs from the Defendant’s site were presented with terms in various forms. For the Communicator program, before the user could download and install, they were presented with a pop-up screen containing the license agreement. Users could not proceed to install the product without scrolling through the terms and selecting “Yes” to signify assent to the terms of the agreement. However, there was another program called SmartDownload that was available for consumers to download. The Plaintiffs were able to download SmartDownload by simply pressing a button on the screen that simply said “Download.” On the page, but often below the screen with the “Download” button, the Defendant noted that downloading the program would constitute acceptance of the licensing agreement. To reach the actual text of the agreement, one had to scroll down below the button, find and click a small hypertext link, which directed to a list of license agreements, then select and click the proper agreement for the product they were downloading. The Plaintiffs all alleged that they did not even scroll down to see that there were additional terms at all.
- Issue(s): Lists the Questions of Law that are raised by the Facts of the case.
- Holding: Shares the Court's answer to the legal questions raised in the issue.
- Concurring / Dissenting Opinions: Includes valuable concurring or dissenting opinions and their key points.
- Reasoning and Analysis: Identifies the chain of argument(s) which led the judges to rule as they did.