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International Legislation Unhackathon

Saturday, May 19, 2012 from 11:30 AM to 6:00 PM (PDT)

San Francisco, CA

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LEGAL HACKS is hosting an International Legislation UNHackathon sponsored by the   Hastings Science & Technology Law Journal.

Participants will gather in groups and “mark up” existing laws into an XML format based on an international standard to promote transparency, accountability, democratic participation, and good governance. Working together, attorneys and technologists will identify the best methods to markup relevant laws into the XML standard.

Some of the key areas of focus will be Constitutions, Privacy laws, and Open Government Laws, but participants can choose to work on other areas of law too.

In addition to Stanford and UCHastings, local events are being organized at Stanford Law School, in Denver, CO and in Italy.

Don’t know what “mark up?” means? Don’t worry, it’s easy. Come, learn, and contribute!

*Please be sure to bring your laptop

NEW: The event website is up now at (Still under development)



Mark up Pre-Selected laws and laws you choose!

-       Mark up Pre-selected laws: US Constitution, Federal and State Privacy, Open Government

-       Breakout Session: Any laws you want!

We welcome participants from around the world to host your own local event.  We suggest the following elements for your event:

1. An Ignite Talk on the importance of structured data for open government.

2. Select a few pieces of legislation to mark up using a developinginternational XML standard for legislation.

3. Marking up the legislation with the goal of having all countries'constitutions in XML, and perhaps also selected open government laws.


11:30 - 12:30 Registration and Lunch

12:30 - 1:00 Official Start: Ignite Speech, Grant Vergottini, Jim Harper.

(Google+ Hangout On Air)

1:00 - 1:15 Brief tutorial to explain XML standard and how marking up works

1:15 - 1:30 Brainstorm on areas of the law to mark up*

1:00 - 5:00 Markup - Break - Discuss

5:00 - post-mixer (location TBA)


Share your thoughts here (Eventbrite) or on the Wiki we have set up for the occasion:

*We are working now on an event website


Additional links and information

·       Project Wiki set up

·       Blog post explaining impact of XML for law

·       Legex Info (Grant Vergottini’s blog describing background info for the event)

·       Akoma Ntoso (the XML language)

·       Examples of how XML changes the law

·       Tom Bruce (LII) on legislative identifiers

Have questions about International Legislation Unhackathon? Contact the organizer
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When & Where

University of California, Hastings College of Law
198 McAllister St.
San Francisco, CA 94102

Saturday, May 19, 2012 from 11:30 AM to 6:00 PM (PDT)

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  News and Updates
Tuesday, May 15, 2012 - 10:10 PM

Remote participants:

Google+ hangout will be announced on on the day of the event.

Twitter Hashtag: #legalhacks

Check out for information on how to participate

Tuesday, April 17, 2012 - 2:17 PM

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