Relaxing whilst doing Competition Law is not an Oxymoron

Archive for August 14th, 2012

Office supplies for the new academic year

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We don’t know if you ever had the same feeling, but when we were students we kept on buying new notebooks, pens, folders, etc at the beginning of each academic year under the reasonable assumption that they would make us smarter..

I had a reminiscence of that last week. I was in London for the basketball games of the Olympics (where Spain was very close to beating the U.S. Dream Team!) and after visiting Pablo Ibañez’s office at LSE (btw, he has been awarded the Departmental teaching award; congrats!) I passed by a legal bookshop called Hammicks where I remembered having spotted some fun stuff. I couldn’t resist purchasing some office supplies for the new year:

A note pad














A cushion

And a new book for my shelf: What Every Lawyer Thinks About Apart from Sex? (it’s 200 blank pages are a must-read!)

Written by Alfonso Lamadrid

14 August 2012 at 8:19 pm

Posted in Jokes, Uncategorized

On competition and blogs

with one comment

Competition seems to be moving moving to the blog arena.

Some of you may recall that a while ago we discussed the case of a Spanish professor who had been sued for accusing a Promusicae of anticompetitive behavior (see here).  We are glad to report that the blogger has won the case, thereby establishing a good precedent to shield Nico and myself from possible similar attacks 😉

Another interesting blog-related development has taken in the U.S. In the context of a high-profile patent infringement case between Google and Oracle, district court judge Alsup has ordered these companies to diclose the identity of bloggers, journalists and consultants that they pay for favorable opinions or consultancy work (for more, see here or here).

This decision has been triggered by the revelation that Florian Müller a well-known IP blogger (from the blog FOSS Patents) had been hired by Oracle shortly after the trial begun.

This unprecedented move should cast light upon the problem related to the lack of transparency surrounding blog content. As the influence of certain blogs grows, it is necessary to start thinking whether the ethical rules governing traditional journalism should also apply in this area. It has certainly led Nicolas and myself to reflect on the way we want to do things.

In our case, we don’t pretend to be impartial informers. We are simply two young professionals who voice out subjective opinions in public to entertain and/or to spur some hopefully interesting debates. We see Chillin’Competition more like a diary than like a newspaper story or an academic paper, and therefore don’t feel under the pressure of being always perfectly informed, accurate, exhaustive and objective about what we write. Of course we try to do our best and to be as technically rigurous as possible, but we’re not afraid of posting first thoughts on some topics, even if our views may evolve afterwards (remember our disclaimer?) 🙂


The small dimension of the competition law community makes it practically unfeasible to continuously disclose personal links. We often know quite well, or are friends with, in-house counsel, external counsel, Commission officials, clerks or Judges involved in all sides of the cases on which we comment here. Disclosing friendship or other informal ties with the people involved in the cases on which we comment would be tremendously burdensome (and it would look a bit weird too…). As said above, we don’t pretend to be always objective. In fact, we generally try to be subjective, but we develop our reasons and we expose them to public criticism. For the time being, our policy is to indicate only the cases in which we are personally involved. Also, where we have written about a case and have later become involved in it, we have also publicly stated it. However, we are, as always, open to comments and suggestions on how to better do what we do.

Blogging law is getting increasingly complicated. Nico: we need a lawyer.






Written by Alfonso Lamadrid

14 August 2012 at 7:55 pm