Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Dawg Blawg Watch: Legal Technology Blog

Check out Legal Technology Blog, from the Xerdict Group, which is designed to share and comment on information about “leading legal technology software, practices and trends.” Recent posts described a site providing information about Microsoft system security information, a video review of a new Blackberry device, and the AmLaw Tech Survey.

SOURCE: Inter Alia

ASIL Launches New International Research Site

The American Society of International Law has recently launched EISIL (Electronic Information System for International Law), a Web site designed to ensure “that web searchers can easily locate the highest quality primary materials, authoritative web sites and helpful research guides to international law on the Internet. To this end, EISIL has been designed as an open database of authenticated primary and other materials across the breadth of international law, which until now have been scattered in libraries, archives and specialized web sites.” (from About EISIL)

EISIL’s organization makes it very easy to locate relevant materials. It includes headings for such topics as international law topics as environmental law, economic law, human rights, criminal law, communications and transport, use of force, international dispute settlement, and private international law. Advanced searching is also available.

SOURCE: BoleyBlogs!

Saturday, September 25, 2004

Watch Late Night Comedy and Get Smart

According to the University of Pennsylvania’s National Annenberg Election Survey, people who watch late-night comedy programs, especially The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, are more likely to know the issue positions and backgrounds of presidential candidates than people who do not watch late-night comedy. See NAES04 press release and Business Journal article.

Friday, September 24, 2004

New Law Library Resources on Illinois Law

The SIU law library has added two electronic subscriptions on Illinois law to its collection. The first may be used by any researcher on the SIU campus network. The second is limited to researchers using computers on the law school network.

The Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education (IICLE) SmartBooks includes all IICLE current publication handbooks, QuickGuides, Flash Points, and selected course materials, plus all forms sold separately on CD and many forms not available anywhere else. For more details ...

The Illinois Administrative Code Annotations, by Laurel Wendt, Associate Director of the Law Library at Southern Illinois University, includes annotations to all cases from any state or federal court that has cited to the Illinois Administrative Code by title and section or part. The Illinois Administrative Code has been published since 1984. For more details ...

With the IICLE SmartBooks, the researcher can do a Full Online Library search or a Chapter Outline Search. There are four search options for both types of search: Type of Library, Practice Area, Title of publication, and Author.

The Full Online Library search retrieves specific sections for the keywords entered, displaying each section by title, in the context of the book, chapter, and subchapter titles. Browse the sections before and after the current section with the arrows located at the top and bottom of each page.

The Chapter Outline search displays the titles of the publications containing the keywords. By clicking on the publication title, the researcher can reveal the chapters of the publication. The chapters that appear bold, black, and in a larger font indicate that the keyword is found within that chapter. Click on a chapter title to reveal the sections within that chapter. Again, the sections containing the keyword appear bold, black, and in a larger font. Click on a section to review the contents containing the keyword.

Once the chapter outline is displayed, the researcher can click on any chapter and section title to review the contents, not just chapters and sections containing the keywords. Browse the sections before and after the current section with the arrows located at the top and bottom of each page. Browse as far back as the beginning of the publication or as far forward as the end of the publication.

To browse the contents of a Handbook, choose the Chapter Outline Search, leave the Keyword search box empty, choose the By Handbook Title search option, select the desired handbook from the drop-down menu, and click Search. Click on the handbook title on the results page to reveal the chapter titles, and on a chapter title to reveal the section titles. Click on the chapter titles and sections desired to view the contents.

Although you must be using a computer on the SIU campus network, or have your own subscription, to search and view the full contents of SmartBooks, you may search the chapter outlines of the publications without a subscription. Note that this search method will not allow you to view the contents of the sections, but it will show you which sections contain your search term.

The Illinois Administrative Code Annotations are searchable by administrative code citation or by keywords in the administrative code text and annotations. You can also browse the administrative code using the expandable code outline. Code sections that have been cited are marked with a button-like “Annotation” icon.

Although you must be using a computer on the SIU law school network, or have your own subscription, to review the annotations, anyone can browse or search the administrative code itself. The site also includes Illinois Rulemaking Process: A Handbook for Rulemakers and Practitioners (3d ed. 2002) by Robert John Kane.

Sunday, September 19, 2004

Tutorial on the Bloglines Webreader

Bonnie Shucha, one of our favorite blawgers, has made her PowerPoint tutorial on Blogs and Webreaders available at WisBlawg. The tutorial features step-by-step instructions for using Bloglines, an online service that makes it possible to read all your blogs, news sites, and listservs in one place. Thanks, Bonnie.

Friday, September 17, 2004

Watch Out for Those Teachers!

A special education and Sunday school teacher was handcuffed and put into a police car last month after Tampa International Airport police charged her with carrying a concealed weapon. The alleged weapon was an 8 1/2-inch leather strap with small lead weights at each end, which she had carried on several flights since the 9/11/2001, including through Tampa airport security.

Although state prosecutors declined to pursue the criminal charges, the Transportation Security Administration is still processing the paperwork to drop the $10,000 civil fine. See Teacher Arrested After Bookmark Called Concealed Weapon.

Thanks to LISNews for the link.

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

NEVER NEVER NEVER click on a link in an email.

Check out Best (Worst) Link Scam I've Seen Yet, about a new, sneaky email scam to redirect your computer to a fake web site, at Dan Appleman's Always Use Protection. Thanks to IT Manager.NET for the link.

When Should Court Documents Be Sealed and Proceedings Closed to the Public?

In a case challenging the requirement of showing a government-issued photo ID to fly on a domestic airline, the U.S. justice department filed a motion with the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals to allow the government to file its brief and record under seal and in camera. The Court denied the motion.

According to this AP report, the U.S. contends that the reasons for and requirements of any federal directive dealing with transportation must be kept secret for national security reasons. The government has even refused to confirm or deny the existence of a directive requiring airlines to check ID.

The government also requested that oral arguments be closed to the public. Julie Hilden discusses the issues involved in the motion and argues for a more moderate solution in Should The Government's Request to Close Court Proceedings Relating to Airline Anti-Terror List Criteria Be Granted?

Legal Resources and the Invisible Web

If you use the Internet to locate legal resources, you need to know about the Invisible Web. Fortunately, Bonnie Shucha, a librarian at the University of Wisconsin and the mastermind behind WisBlawg, has written Finding Legal Resources on the Invisible Web. This article in the Sept. 2004 issue of Wisconsin Lawyer offers strategies on how to efficiently locate dynamic content that exists as pieces of information within databases.

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Tips on Finding Patent News

Check out “Patent News Sources,” in which author Dennis Crouch offers some tips and rules he follows in locating items for his Patently Obvious: Patent Law Blog. He lists both secondary sources (including selected blogs) and primary sources (such as the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office).

SOURCE: The Virtual Chase Alert

Friday, September 10, 2004

Miami Mystery First Novel Published by ABA

The American Bar Association has just published The Shadow of Justice by Milton Hirsh, a Miami criminal defense lawyer, the first work of fiction published by the ABA in its 126-year history. According to the press release, the work, written by Hirsh “in the wee hours before work each day, . . . unveils a realistic, unvarnished glimpse of a Miami murder and drug case.” With The Shadow of Justice, ABA Publishing begins a new series, Great Stories by Great Lawyers, that will “feature new novels by those who know the legal system the best: practicing lawyers and judges. Part of the ABA’s mission in establishing the series is to educate the public about the criminal justice system by illustrating the way it really works.”

SOURCE: Univ. of Baltimore Law Library Weblog

Dawg Blawg Watch: Welcome to BizFems Speak!

Officially born on September 1 (but posting since late August), BizFems Speak! is posting in the “very broad area of corporate law.” According to its welcome message, the contributors (all women and all law professors) “expect to post on a variety of issues surrounding the role of the corporation in society, reflecting a wide range of viewpoints and ideologies. . . . In addition, [they] will post notices for conferences, calls for papers, and other happenings in the corporate law arena.”

SOURCE: Inter Alia

Browse Congressional Documents on GPO Access

The U.S. Government Printing Office (GPO) has added a new browse feature on the Congressional documents Web pages available through GPO Access. Now, in addition to being able to search for House, Senate, and Senate Treaty Documents by subject or document number, users also can now browse the catalog of these documents by Congress, beginning with the 104th Congress (1995-1996).
SOURCE: beSpacific

Thursday, September 09, 2004

Dawg Blawg Watch: New Communications Law Blog

Communications Law Blog is new from Communications Practice Group of Davis Wright Tremaine LLP.

SOURCE: BoleyBlogs!

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Law Student Blawgers

Are you thinking of starting a law student blawg? If you really think you have the time for such an endeavor, check out other law student blawgs at Weekly Law School Roundup, ChessLaw, and Blawg.org’s Directory of Law Student Blawgs. You should also review this Guide to Blawging for 1L’s, even if you are no longer a 1L.

Friday, September 03, 2004

Satire Is Protected Speech

In New Times, Inc. v. Farley, the Texas Supreme Court rules that satire is a protected form of speech. The Court's opinion nicely synthesizes the law on the requirements of falsity and actual malice for public officials to recover damages on their claims of defamation. For a compilation of coverage and commentary on the case, see Supreme Court of Texas instructs lower courts to get a better sense of humor at Howard Bashman’s How Appealing blawg.

Top Ten Student Myths About Legal Research and Writing

Student Lawyer, a publication of the ABA Law Student Division, has an article by a former lawyer and current law professor about common misunderstandings law students have about the practice of law. To avoid a rude awakening when you start working in the "real world," read Get Real About Research and Writing. Thanks to Prof. Liemer for pointing us to this article.

Missouri Agencies Offer RSS Feeds

For those interested in monitoring developments in Missouri, eighteen of the state’s administrative agencies offer RSS feeds. Included among them are the Agriculture, Conservation, Insurance, Labor & Industrial Relations, Revenue, and Transportation departments. Also offering feeds are important government offices: Governor, Lt. Governor, and Secretary of State.

SOURCE: The Blawg Channel

Thursday, September 02, 2004

Do You IM? Report Says Many Do

How Americans Use Instant Messaging, a new Pew Internet & American Life report (PDF, 28 p.), indicates, among other things that:

"53 million American adults use instant messaging and its appeal is especially apparent among young adults and technology enthusiasts."

"Although most IM users still use email more frequently than IM, a significant number are turning to IM more often than they do email."

"Some 21% of IM users, or approximately 11 million American adults, use instant messaging at work. . . . At-work IM users report feeling positively about how instant messaging improves workflow and the quality of the work-day. But some think that the use of IM encourages gossip, distracts them, or even adds stress to the workplace."

SOURCE: BeSpacific