Welcome to the Engineering Counsel List! 👋

Insights from the kind of lawyer you never knew you existed and will, from this day on, forever wish you had on your engineering team

Hey Software Engineers,

Thanks for stopping by my new Substack to join me on this journey to learn more about what it is to be an engineering counsel and how engineering counsel can help you.

About Engineering Counsel

My name is Michael Rice, I’m an attorney in California since 2012, but I’ve been writing code for a living since before the turn of the last century. For a long time, I’ve been writing and blogging about the intersection of law and software engineering. I started, before law school in 2005 with a blog called Coderights. But I’ve long struggled to find an articulate way to describe it.

I think these two magic words: ENGINEERING COUNSEL will finally do it.

In this unique (mostly) daily email list, I invite you to learn a little about law and how it impacts software engineering and those who code. Most importantly, however, I’ll give you actionable insights and ideas how to avoid a lot of the fear, uncertainty, and doubt (a/k/a FUD) surrounding legal issues.

Eventually, daily subscriptions will be $14/month because it’s going to contain real value for you — a WHOLE LOT more than $14/month worth of value!

The first subscribers will get at least 50% discounts, so:


What We’re Going To Cover

After you ✅ that off your list, let’s talk about some of topics we’ll cover:

  • engineering cultural issues <- and legal the employment issues thereof

  • law for software engineers: employment law, side gigs, non-competes

  • the kinds of intellectual property you are building with each iteration

  • using open source

  • privacy and how to engineer privacy into your code

  • data security and data breach horrors

  • the private law we build: terms of service and building contracts, community with users, and CDA 230

  • even criminal law, like the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, and risks for software engineers

For a long time, in the Wild West days of the early Internet, software engineers could be blissfully ignorant of the Powers That Be, but times are changing. We’ll get through it together!

-Michael Rice

If you find this interesting (and you WILL), tell your friends!


LEGAL DISCLAIMERS AND OTHER MUMBO JUMBO: since this is a newsletter from an attorney, it is possible that this could be construed as attorney advertising (in blinking lights, of courts). I should also tell you that anything I say or opinions I offer in the list should never be construed as legal advice — even if you think the facts from some case or situation I discuss are pretty close to yours, small details make a big difference. And besides, since I’m just broadcasting information without seeing your individual situation, how could I possibly be giving you legal advice? Never forget the lesson of the Selfish Giant. And finally, my name is Michael Rice, I wrote this content, I’m licensed in California, and, with rare exception, can only work with clients in California.