It is my honor to introduce Chapman Law Review’s first Issue of Volume Twenty-Four. This Issue is the first of two general law review Issues in this year’s Volume and publishes scholarship with a wide array of topics that span many legal areas.
Professor Denis Binder opens this Issue with an Article analyzing the cases that form the foundation of modern American environmental law and protection. In his Article, Professor Binder bases his analysis of those cases on five decades in environmental law, using historical perspective to look at the environmental, procedural, and substantive impacts and significance of the case decisions.
Next in this Issue is Mr. Daniel P. Schley, CFA’s Article, which reconsiders whether corporate shareholders would benefit from the application of tort law principles to a limited shareholder liability analysis. In this Article, Mr. Schley argues that tort law would address limited shareholder liability under a negligence and not a strict liability regime, and that a negligence regime would produce results similar to those produced under the current corporate law framework. Mr. Schley finds that tort law, like corporate law, would uphold limited shareholder liability.
Professor Joshua M. Silverstein’s Article follows and explores the area of contract interpretation. In his Article, Professor Silverstein aims to clarify various legal concepts and principles that play a critical role in interpreting case law and secondary literature. By untying some of the knots that entangle contract interpretation and the parol evidence rule, Professor Silverstein hopes his Article will aid in addressing interpretive issues in the contexts of adjudication, contract drafting, scholarship, and teaching.
Mr. Carl C. Jones wrote the following Comment in this Issue. Mr. Jones graduated from Chapman University Fowler School of Law in 2021 and has served on the Chapman Law Review as a dedicated Staff Editor, Executive Board member, and Senior Articles Editor. His work and contribution to the Chapman Law Review were invaluable in the publication of this Volume. Mr. Jones’ article seeks to coherently summarize the broad cultural and legal conversations about loot boxes in the United States video game industry. His Comment argues that existing case and statutory law are sufficient for a court to conclude that loot boxes can have value and are legally equivalent to gambling.
This Issue ends with a Comment by Mr. Ashton E. Stine, another graduate of Chapman University Dale E. Fowler School of Law class of 2021, and Chapman Law Review member. Mr. Stine served as a Staff Editor and Executive Board member of the Chapman Law Review. In his last year of law school, Mr. Stine held the critical position of Production Editor and, in that capacity, was instrumental in the production and publication of this Volume. Mr. Stine’s Comment discusses the background and purpose of collective bargaining in American professional sports, the consequences of collective bargaining failure, and the results of player dissatisfaction. His Comment describes the interconnected relationship between antitrust law and labor law in sports and details a current problem in the collective bargaining agreements of the NFL and the NHL.
This past year, as we experienced a challenging time both because of the restrictions and effects of COVID-19 and the tumultuous political and social climate, the Chapman Law Review triumphed. We would not have been able to do so without the continued support of the members of the administration and faculty that made the publication of this Issue possible, including: Dean of Chapman University Dale E. Fowler School of Law, Matthew Parlow; our faculty advisor, Professor Celestine Richards McConville; and our faculty advisory committee members, Professor Deepa Badrinarayana, Professor Ernesto Hernandez, Professor Kenneth Stahl, Professor Richard Redding, and Professor Lan Cao. A special thank you goes to the Research Librarians of the Hugh & Hazel Darling Law Library for their tireless work for the Chapman Law Review.
I want to express my sincerest gratitude to the incredible students who served as the Executive Board members of the Chapman Law Review—without your countless hours of work, adaptability, and perseverance, this Volume would not have been possible. It has been such a pleasure and honor working alongside you. Last but certainly not least, I thank the staff of the 2020–2021 Chapman Law Review. Your remarkable, committed, and tireless work was paramount to the publication of this Volume. I feel truly honored and privileged to have been part of this journal and been allowed to serve and lead the Chapman Law Review this past year.
Contract Interpretation and the Parol Evidence Rule: Toward Conceptual Clarification
Joshua M. Silverstein