December 6, 2005
Sign Petition for Open Access to World Law Bulletin
Keeping up with recent changes in foreign and international law can be a time consuming task. I recently learned of an excellent publication to help with this current awareness chore. The World Law Bulletin is a monthly publication of the Directorate of Legal Research at the Law Library of Congress. It provides "over 500 updates on foreign law developments annually."
World Law Bulletin is a truly amazing publication. See the May 2005 issue (pdf). The Bulletin provides information on new developments in the legal systems of over 40 countries and regions. If you monitor ASIL’s International Legal Materials, which usually only includes 5-10 documents per issue, you know the breadth of coverage provided by World Law Bulletin is extraordinary.
Here is the kicker, the World Law Bulletin is only available to members of Congress and their staff. Like that other Library of Congress organization, the Congressional Research Service, the Directorate of Legal Research does not provide the public with direct access to its products.
A sign-on letter is being compiled asking the Joint Committee on the Library to "encourage, if not direct, the Law Library of Congress to publish the World Law Bulletin on the World Wide Web for unrestricted public access." This recent Secrecy News report is included here for background.
Signatures by Friday. If you would like to sign on to the letter, please send your name, title, & organization to Patrice McDermott email@example.com by December 9th – that is this Friday.
When librarians get behind a cause, things happen – just ask Michael Moore. Help your fellow foreign and international law librarians and sign on for open access!
(adapted from Marylin Raisch’s original post to the FCIL-SIS list)
Lee Peoples, Oklahoma City University Law Library
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