May 4, 2005
Opening for Law Library Director at Tulane
Director of the Law Library
Tulane University Law School in New Orleans, Louisiana, invites applications and nominations for the position of Director of the Law Library. Tulane Law School is fully accredited by the ABA and a charter member of the AALS. It currently has 48 full-time faculty, 10 full-time instructors, roughly 1,000 JD students, an LLM program with 50 to 80 U.S. and international students each year, and both PhD and SJD programs with a small number of students. The law library has holdings in excess of 550,000 volumes and volume equivalents and is a federal government document depository. It occupies roughly 52,000 square feet covering the third through sixth floors of the law school building. It has a staff of 10 full-time professional librarians (counting the director), a support staff of 10 full-time paraprofessionals, and several student workers.
The Director is responsible for all library operations, including budgeting, expenditures, hiring and supervision of all library staff, collection development, research and reference services, both strategic long-term and short-term planning, initiating and monitoring all library programs and services, and technology applications. The Director reports to the Dean and also works closely with the Deputy Dean on most matters.
Applicants must have a JD degree from an ABA-accredited law school, an MLS. from an ALA-accredited institution, and significant experience in law library administration.
Applications review will begin in late August 2005. Interviews will be conducted during the Fall semester. The successful candidate can begin the appointment at the earliest possible date but in no event later than July 1, 2006. The salary is competitive and commensurate with qualifications and experience. The appointment could be to a faculty position or to a non-faculty senior administrative position depending on the interests, preferences and background of the candidate. Applicants should provide a letter of interest, a resume, and contact information for three references, and they must be willing to provide permission for the release of their academic records from any professional and graduate schools they have attended. Tulane University is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All candidates who possess the requisite qualifications are encouraged to apply.
Applications and nominations should be sent to Professor Adeno Addis, Tulane Law School, 6329 Freret St., New Orleans, LA 70118 or electronically to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Critique of the WSIS Vision
In WSIS: Whose vision of an information society? , Ajit Pyati criticizes the contributions the UN and the ITU are making to the Information Society literature. The article was published in the May 2 issue of First Monday. Here is the abstract.
The United Nations (UN) and International Telecommunication Union (ITU), in their development of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), are contributing to the on-going discourse of the "Information Society." This study analyzes how WSIS contributes to the on-going Information Society discourse, especially how it frames a vision of an Information Society and the global "digital divide." The methodology of this study is a broad, comprehensive, and critical content analysis of the two main documents of WSIS, its Declaration of Principles and Plan of Action. The content analysis utilizes discourse analysis and ideology critique, and quantitative and qualitative methods. The results of the analysis show that WSIS paints a wholly utopian, technologically deterministic picture of an "Information Society" that oversimplifies and generalizes a complex issue and phenomenon, about which no clear consensus exists.
May 3, 2005
National Library Legislative Day and the FDLP
From Mary Alice Baish
Associate Washington Affairs Representative
American Association of Law Libraries
ALA is sponsoring its annual National Library Legislative Day in DC on May 3rd-4th. Its Government Documents Round Table (GODORT) has put together some materials and talking points to help communicate with members of Congress about the importance of the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP) and the continuing need for print distribution as GPO moves to complete its transition to a more electronic program. GODORT is also requesting that those of us unable to attend National Library Legislative Day contact our elected representatives this week. GODORT's Legislative Day materials are at: http://sunsite.berkeley.edu/GODORT/legislation/legday/legday05.html
Over 200 federal depository libraries are located in law schools, courts, and public law libraries. Skilled law librarians assist users every day in locating materials essential to meet their legal research needs. Law librarians played an important role this winter in contacting members of Congress to oppose GPO's plans, announced in mid-January, to
limit the production and distribution of tangible materials to depository libraries to only the 50 titles on the Essential Titles List beginning in October 2005. As a result of this successful grassroots effort, GPO announced on March 1st that it would continue to provide for
dissemination of tangible products to depository libraries in accordance with existing policy through the end of FY 2006.
Please join your ALA/GODORT colleagues and send an email message to members of your congressional delegation this week asking for continued support for the FDLP. This provides a timely opportunity to communicate the need for continued print distribution of key legal materials to depository libraries. A massive influx of emails this week will send a signal to Congress that the law library community has a strong commitment to the FDLP and no-fee permanent public access to government information.
Use the talking points below but also include "stories" of how your library helps their constituents locate and use government and legal information.
1. The Federal Depository Library Program established by Congress more than 150 years ago has proven to be a tremendously successful partnership among Congress, federal agencies, the courts, the GPO, depository libraries and the American public in ensuring the public's right to know. The depository libraries in your state/congressional district guarantee that your constituents have no-fee access to government information and the assistance of skilled and knowledgeable librarians to help them find the government and legal information they need.
2. Law librarians have long supported GPO's transition to a more electronic program. However, we also believe that GPO should not completely eliminate print because there is no reliable system in place to ensure the authentication, version control, permanent public access to and preservation of electronic government information. Today print is the only authenticated version of critical official government legal information. In February, the AALL Executive Board endorsed a "Resolution Opposing GPO's Plan to Eliminate Important Titles in Print Prior to Establishing a Reliable Electronic System," available at: http://www.ll.georgetown.edu/aallwash/re021605.html.
3. Tell your own "stories" about helping their constituents locate and use legal government information resources disseminated through the FDLP. Remind them that the FDLP is THEIR program that provides THEIR constituents with local access to government information.
4. Urge your representatives to support the GPO's FY 2006 budget request, including $33.8 million for the Salaries and Expenses (S&E) Appropriation of the Superintendent of Documents that supports the FDLP. Urge also that GPO continue to use this appropriations to produce and distribute important tangible products to depository libraries. Today only print and microfiche are the trusted and authenticated formats for permanent access to and preservation of legal government information.
5) Last but not least, urge your senators to contact Sen. Trent Lott (R-MS), Chairman of the Committee on Rules and Administration, and your House representative to contact Rep. Bob Ney (R-18-OH), Chairman of the Committee on House Administration, requesting that they hold an oversight hearing on GPO's strategic vision for the 21st Century and the many new initiatives outlined in this plan. The FDLP is Congress's program, and these initiatives and their impact on the FDLP and users of depository libraries should be reviewed by the authorizing committees before their implementation.
You can quickly locate your members' email forms through the Online Directory for the 109th Congress at: http://www.visi.com/juan/congress/
Thank you very much,
Mary Alice Baish
Associate Washington Affairs Representative
American Association of Law Libraries
Reminder: Future of Legal Research Symposium on May 13-14 in Chicago
The Future of Legal Research: What will it be and how will we teach it.
Chicago-Kent College of Law
May 13-14, 2005
May 4, 1970
Least we forget:
Shortly after noon on May 4, 1970, 13 seconds of rifle fire by a contingent of 28 Ohio National Guardsmen left four students dead, one permanently paralyzed, and eight others wounded. Some of the students were participating in a demonstration against the Vietnam War. Others were just on their way to class.
Recent Publications from the Adminstrative Office of the US Courts
A total of 1,710 applications for wiretaps of wire, oral or electronic communications were authorized by federal and state judges in 2004, an increase of 19 percent over 2003.
The History of Federal Judgeships documents the process for soliciting and evaluating requests for additional appellate and district court judgeships, as well as for forwarding recommendations for these judgeships to Congress. Information on this site focuses on appellate and district court judgeships, but also includes historic information on authorized judgeships for all courts and judgeship appointments by presidents since 1933.With the exception of judgeship appointments by presidents, information on this site changes infrequently. When changes do occur, appropriate sections of this site are updated.
New Titles from Cambridge University Press
Legal Reason: The Use of Analogy in Legal Argument (Hardback & Paperback)
Lloyd L. Weinreb
Legal Reason is written in accessible prose, with examples from law and from everyday life.
Principles of International Criminal Law (Hardback & Paperback)
This book provides comprehensive coverage of substantive international criminal law.
Drexel University hopes to open a law school by fall 2006. If the school's Board of Trustees approves the plan, the University will submit a proposal to the Pennsylvania Department of Education for provisional approval.
Co-op Program. There are now five law schools in Philadelphia, but Drexel's would be unique in taking a cooperative approach, in which students alternate academic work with two six-month work assignments, officials said.
Drexel plans to offer the Juris Doctor as its principal degree, along with a master of laws degree (LLM) and a master of legal studies in various fields.
May 2, 2005
Velvel on National Affairs
Last week I posted a note about the "Angry Gator" a gripe blog by U Florida Law students. Today I am writing about another gripe blog, Velvel on National Affairs. The blog is written by Massachusetts School of Law Dean Lawrence R. Velvel and, at least according to his masthead, the blog strives to be something more than a gripe blog. "This blog sets forth the personal views of the Dean of the Massachusetts School of Law on national events" -- or as indicated by the tone of most posts, a rant 'n rave blog.
Recently Velvel posted a "Dear Colleagues" letter that clearly and I mean clearly indicates he has quite a grip with how Harvard is administered. Posted on April 22th (OK, I'm a little behind), Re: Larry Tribe, Larry Summers, And Elena Kagan: Because Of The Larry Tribe Affair, It Is Time For Larry Summers To Go ... blasts Harvard University as "probably the only school in the country with a University Professor who is an admitted plagiarist."
Two notes. First, the title University Professor is a big deal. Only about 1% of Harvard profs attain that status. Second, Velvel is referring to Harvard Law Prof Laurence Tribe. Please note Velvel is making the characterization, not me --- please don't sue me.
Velvel's complaint, Professor Tribe wasn't stripped of his title and position of University Professor as punishment after he acknowledge he failed to make proper attribution in one of his works.
In the post, Velvel gives a detailed and I mean detailed blow-by-blow account of the matter, an analysis of the issues, and related yada, yada, yada. In other words, I really don't care what Professor Tribe may or may not have done. I'd buy him a beer any day.
I write about this because the post is one the most amazing "burn your bridges" blog posts I have ever read.
"As far as this writer can see, the failure of punishment by Summers should be the last straw with that guy. After what seems to have been a never ending series of contretemps and foul-ups, Summers’ failure to visit even the slightest punishment on Tribe, Summers’ gross failure to uphold intellectual integrity, is further proof -- if further proof were needed -- that he is not fit to lead Harvard or any university. He should be fired. And when he leaves he should take Elena Kagan, the Dean of the Law School, with him. They are a combined embarrassment."
Again, I don't really care too much about what President Summers or Harvard Law Dean Kagan should have done. I'd buy them beers too. But then I would just be sucking up.
(OK, OK - there is this matter but I'm sure neither President Summers nor I would let that stop us from enjoying a Guinness or two at Uncle Woody's, the Cincinnati Law School hangout.)
The Death Penalty on Trial Forum
The current issue of The Lighthouse, the weekly email newsletter of the Independent Institute reports that the transcript for DEATH PENALTY ON TRIAL forum is now available.
Here is the complete announcement:
Are wrongly convicted prisoners sitting on death row? As disturbing as it may be, such an injustice is highly probable, according to television personality Bill Kurtis, host of "American Justice" and "Cold Case Files."
As someone who watched Bill Kurtis when he was a news anchor in Chicago, I found him interesting and frustrating at the same time. Kurtis, a lawyer, could never make up his mind. One day he would take the high road, the next the low road. I haven't read The Death Penalty on Trial so I don't know which road he took this time
At the recent Independent Policy Forum named after his new book, THE DEATH PENALTY ON TRIAL, Kurtis described the sobering case of Ray Krone, a mailman and Air Force veteran who served ten years on death row before he was exonerated and released following the matching of a DNA sample on the victim's shirt with that of a sexual predator who lived near the crime scene. Kurtis then described a case that led to a death sentence for Ernest Willis. Although Willis was exonerated and released, another person -- Todd Willingham -- convicted using the same forensic procedures deemed faulty in the Willis case was executed in February of 2005.
Kurtis listed eight main reasons why innocent people have been given the death sentence. These include overzealous and dishonest prosecutors, corrupt policemen, unreliable witnesses and expert witnesses, incompetent defense attorneys, biased judges, and jailhouse informants. A prosecutor in Arizona, Kenneth Peasley, was disbarred recently "because it was found that he falsified evidence in a murder trial," Kurtis said.
Following Kurtis's presentation, UC Berkeley Boalt Hall Law School professor Franklin Zimring, author of THE CONTRADICTIONS OF AMERICAN CAPITAL, described what he called the mysteries of the death penalty -- ranging from the rarity of executions in California (despite the Golden State having 650 inmates on death row), to Illinois Gov. Ryan commuting the sentences of about 160 condemned prisoners but not ordering a review of all criminal cases, to the non-action that followed a blue-ribbon commission on capital punishment in Massachusetts. The answer to these mysteries, Zimring suggested, is that political elites sense that a large segment of the public is coming to see the death penalty as unnecessary and unjust, just as many Europeans did a generation ago.
"Can we ever really make it a system in which ten guilty men are going to go free before one innocent man is convicted?" Zimring asked rhetorically. "No, we'll have to change the nature of the country, not just the nature of the system, before that happens -- and it probably won't happen."
For a transcript of "The Death Penalty on Trial," featuring Bill Kurtis and Franklin E. Zimring (1/27/05), see http://www.independent.org/events/transcript.asp?eventID=107
Also see, "The Causes of Wrongful Conviction," by Paul Craig Roberts (THE INDEPENDENT REVIEW, Spring 2003) http://www.independent.org/publications/tir/article.asp?issueID=14&articleID=72
To purchase CHANGING THE GUARD: Private Prisons and the Control of Crime, ed. by Alexander Tabarrok, see http://www.independent.org/store/book_detail.asp?bookID=20
TO SERVE AND PROTECT: Privatization and Community in Criminal Justice, by Bruce L. Benson, see http://www.independent.org/store/book_detail.asp?bookID=21,
Oops! Do You Know What April 23rd Was?
April 23 was World Book and Copyright Day. News to me. The day is set aside to promote reading, publishing, and the protection of intellectual property through copyright. UNESCO, which established the day 10 years ago, chose April 23 because it was on that date in 1616 that authors Miguel de Cervantes, William Shakespeare, and Inca Garcilaso de la Vega died.
Reminder: Reply Comments on Orphan Works due May 9, 2005
Initial orphan works comments received by March 25, 2005, have been posted on the Register of Copyright's site. Parties who wish to submit reply comments should follow the instructions set forth in the Notice of Inquiry. Reply comments are due by 5:00 p.m. EDT on May 9, 2005.
May Day Coverage by LaborProf Blog
LaborProf Blog covered May Day in the following three post:
SCOTUS to Hear Solomon Amendment Case
CNN is reporting that the US Supreme Court said it will consider whether colleges and universities may bar military recruiters from their campuses without fear of losing federal funds.
Rumsfeld v. Forum for Academic and Insitutional Rights, 04-1152
World Factbook, 2005
THe CIA's 2005 World Factbook is now online
May 1, 2005
Stem Cell Research Guidelines
On April 26, 2005, The National Academies recommended guidelines for research involving human embryonic stem cells, and urged all institutions conducting such research to establish oversight committees to ensure that the new guidelines will be followed. The guidelines are intended to enhance the integrity of privately funded human embryonic stem cell research by encouraging responsible practices, said the committee that wrote the report, a joint project between the National Academies' National Research Council and Institute of Medicine.
LexisNexis Source Locator
For the once very frequent but now infrequent Lexis user (like me), there is a way to find out what's in Lexis, namely "Source Locator." I'm sure this has been around for awhile but it is new to me.
SImply put, the LexisNexis Searchable Directory of Online Sources aka "Source Locator" is used to see what publications/sources are available (and how soon after publication) on the LexisNexis services, as well as information about the sources, such as a description of coverage and publisher. Beats flipping through their 900+ page paper directory.
LexisNexis also provides an interactive map view of their Directory of Online Sources. The interactive map allows one to visually find more information about the content available in their databases. I, for one, didn't find the map particularly useful.
It's Birthing Season for Deans
According to JURIST: