Kendra AlbertClinical Instructor
Cyberlaw Clinic, Harvard Law School
Hey there! I’m Kendra, a technology lawyer and a scholar of computing, gender, and society.
By day, I’m a clinical instructor at the Cyberlaw Clinic at Harvard Law School, where I teach students to practice technology law. I am a radical generalist and will work on pretty much anything technology-related. Some recent (public) highlights include:
- Helping Fight for the Future, an digital rights advocacy organization, fight back against a retaliatory and overbroad subpoena from Proctorio, an e-proctoring company.
- Working with sex worker art collective Veil Machine to provide legal support for their art show E-Viction, that protested digital gentrification.
- Representing Paul Kruczynski when he received a takedown letter from Instagram for his use of the Instagram trademark in the domain name “dontuseinstagram.com.”
My scholarship, writing, and speaking focus on questions of digital technology and power, especially in relationship to gender and sexuality. Some representative examples:
- My legal scholarship focuses on FOSTA/SESTA, a 2018 law that changed how liability worked for online platforms around sex trafficking and prostitution. With Elizabeth Brundige and Lorelei Lee, I published a descriptive article, FOSTA in Legal Context, which aimed to situate FOSTA in relationship to the Mann Act and the Travel Act. More recently, I have an article called Five Reflections from Four Years of FOSTA/SESTA, forthcoming in the Cardozo Arts and Entertainment Law Journal, which tries to summarize what working with sex workers on FOSTA has taught me.
- With Maggie Delano, I’ve written about how non-binary people are excluded from “smart scales” and what this means about inclusion in health technologies more generally, in “This Whole Thing Smacks of Gender”, and “Sex Trouble”.
- With Ram Shankar Siva Kumar and others, I’ve written and spoken about how to apply law to adversarial attacks on machine learning systems. Our Blackhat talk “Smashing the ML Stack for Fun and Lawsuits” is a great summary.
I also hold an appointment as a lecturer on Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality at Harvard University, where I teach a class on transgender rights and the law. In 2019, I founded the Initiative for a Representative First Amendment (IfRFA), which provides funding and support for law students from backgrounds traditionally underrepresented in First Amendment law. I currently serve as IfRFA’s director, working alongside the incredible Jasjot Kaur.
When I’m not working or teaching or writing, I try to make the world suck less. I have a side business facilitating workshops on anti-oppressive practices, and I reinvest money from that work into community mutual aid. Other than that, I spend my free time reading, playing video games, and cooking.
I tweet at @KendraSerra and toot (ugh) at @Kendraserra@dair-community.social. I occasionally blog about things I’ve been thinking about. Reach me by email at kendra dot serra at gmail dot com. My pronouns are they/them/theirs. For more info on my background and accomplishments, feel free to peruse my CV.
Photo by Kathy Pham.