The Journal Of Law And Technology At Texas (JOLTT – is proud to present the panel Unwarranted Surveillance, featuring Shahid Buttar of EFF and Bobby Chesney and Steve Vladeck of The UT School of Law. Shahid will be visiting Austin as a guest of EFF-Austin, a long-time local affinity group of EFF and a member of their Electronic Frontier Alliance (EFA).

Congress recently reauthorized, extended, and expanded NSA surveillance without a judicial warrant requirement to restrain documented (and potentially recurring) abuses. Why does domestic surveillance prompt concerns from across the political spectrum? How does it relate to constitutional norms and principles? And how does it connect a recurring debate in the federal policy arena to local policing—and policy opportunities available to grassroots networks and local policymakers in cities across the country? All this and more will be discussed at this panel.

Shahid Buttar is an artist, writer, organizer, and lawyer. He works at the Electronic Frontier Foundation as the organization’s Director of Grassroots Advocacy, offering him opportunities to work with organizations and affinity groups around the country fighting mass surveillance and corporate control over science and culture. Shahid also serves on the boards of Defending Rights and Dissent and the Fund for Constitutional Government, served as the Executive Director of the Bill of Rights Defense Committee from 2009-2016, and graduated from Stanford Law School in 2003, where he served as Lawrence Lessig’s teaching assistant for Constitutional Law.

Robert M. (“Bobby”) Chesney is an American lawyer and the Charles I. Francis Professor in Law at The University of Texas School of Law, where he serves as the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and teaches courses relating to U.S. national security and constitutional law. In addition, he is the Director of the Robert S. Strauss Center for International Security and Law, a University-wide research unit bridging across disciplines to improve understanding of international security issues, as well as cyber-security and AI-related issues. Chesney addresses issues involving national security and law, including matters relating to military detention, the use of force, terrorism-related prosecutions, the role of the courts in national security affairs, and the relationship between military and intelligence community activities. He is a co-founder and contributor along with Benjamin Wittes and Jack Goldsmith to the Lawfare Blog.

Stephen Vladeck is a Professor of Law at the University of Texas School of Law, where he specializes in national security law, especially with relation to the prosecution of war crimes. Vladeck has commented on the legality of the United States’ use of extrajudicial detention and torture.

Open to the public.

Location Details: UT School of Law is located off of Dean Keeton St & Robert Deadman Dr. The meeting will be held in Townes Hall (TNH) Room 2.140 which is on the Ground Floor near the North Patio and Courtyard.