February 26, 2011
A Pick-Me-Up for the Library Blues: This Book is Overdue!
Harper Perennial; Reprint edition (January 25, 2011)
Paperback Print List Price: $14.99; Amazon Sale Price: $8.35; Kindle Price: $9.99 Price: $8.35
From BookMarks Magazine:
As book lovers themselves, reviewers happily joined Johnson in librarian hero worship. They were consistently impressed by her enthusiasm for her subject and entertained by her anecdotes about the challenges librarians face on a daily basis. Opinions differed, however, over Johnson's idea that librarians will guide us to a new era of literacy online. No one doubted the valor of Johnson's "cybrarians," but some asked if she was sufficiently critical of the drawbacks of moving information online--from the decline in American attention spans to missing the smell of a good old-fashioned binding. Enjoy this book for its look at library culture, not for its prognostications.
February 25, 2011
Law School Dean Gigs: It's One of the More Thankless Jobs
Particularly if one wants to try to persuade entrenched tenured faculty to reform the legal academy but Dan Filler has posted his Law School Dean Searches 2010-11 Edition. Over 20 openings include a couple in Canada. [JH]
Death Penalty News, there's an app for that
The Death Penalty Information Center is offering a free iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch app which provides access to the most frequently used resources on DPIC's main website, including its Fact Sheet on the Death Penalty, Execution Database, and the most recent death penalty news from around the country. Hat tip to OSU law prof Douglas Berman who writes in his Sentencing Law & Policy post "Have your Angry Birds gone postal? You might need the newest app, from the Death Penalty Information Center...." [JH]
Friday Fun: "There are many reasons we need to save our libraries, not least because of their cinematic history."
The Guardian UK wonders what would replace libraries as backdrops to movie action if they went away. "Discovering the murderer on an app? Searching the shelves of … Amazon? It just won't do." The article includes a number of video clips of famous library scenes. Hat tip to LLB co-editor Mark Giangrande for this gem. [JH]
Check out the Digital Public Library of America Initiative Wiki
On December 13, 2010, the Berkman Center for Internet and Society announced that the Center is hosting an initiative for a Digital Public Library of America involving a large and diverse group of stakeholders to define the scope, architecture, costs and administration for a proposed Digital Public Library of America. To support this effort, check out the Digital Public Library of America Wiki. Note, for example, the most revised wiki pages. Participation in the development of the wiki is open to all interested parties. Hat tip to Jennifer Howard's The Chronicle article, Talking About a Digital Public Library of America. [JH]
Updated Guide to Law Review Submission Requirements
Information for Submitting Articles to Law Reviews & Journals [SSRN] by Allen Rostron and Nancy Levit (both UMKC LAW) contains information about submitting articles to law reviews and journals, including the methods for submitting an article, any special formatting requirements, how to contact them to request an expedited review, and how to contact them to withdraw an article from consideration. It covers 202 law reviews. The document was fully updated in February 2011. [JH]
February 24, 2011
In The News
What with Madison, Wisconsin, embroiled in demonstrations over whether or not public employees will lose collective bargaining rights, it comes as no surprise that one of the top downloads recently at GAO is a 48 page report from 2002 called Collective Bargaining Rights: Information on the Number of Workers with and without Bargaining Rights.
Other information on the state of labor is available at the 2011 edition of the Statistical Abstract of the United States, particularly Table 665, Labor Union Membership by State: 1985 and 2009. Wisconsin is one the states that lost union members between those dates, declining from 435,900 to 384,700. The decline in union membership is also identified as going from 22.3% of workers to 15.2%. Approximately 7% of workers are in the public sector. More labor statistics are here.
The ABA is considering a move that would make the LSAT optional, according to a report in ABC News. The ABA has granted waivers for some schools when it comes to accepting its own graduates who apply to law school. That, viewed by some, questions the importance of the test. The reason behind the ABA action is to help diversify law school student bodies. The article notes statistics where test results have artificially limited minorities from attending law school.
The United States may be moving in one direction on the test. India, on the other hand, is moving in another. Twenty-five law colleges in India will accept results from the test administered in India by the LSAC. That number is up from four schools last year. India has 13 national law schools and approximately 900 law colleges. More on this from mydigitalfc.com.
The economics of law practice may place pressure on firms to economize in their costs and the fees they charge clients. The Wall Street Journal informs us that in these trying times there are lawyers who charge over $1,000 an hour for their time. Obviously this is not the norm. These individuals are few, but possess unique skill and experience to justify these charges. Their area of expertise seem to revolve around large financial issues such as merger and acquisition. Word of advice to law students, build up your knowledge of corporation and competition law.
Reuters has an article on what I think is the relatively new practice of doing online background checks for prospective jurors. Armed with an online capable device, lawyers can do quick background checks on prospective jurors in social media and search engines to glean more information than what's on the questionnaire each prospect fills out. The article describes the practice as "Google dire," which is ironic. Google's many attempts at creating an online social experience have never really gained traction. This development means that lawyers join the ranks of advertisers and cyber-thieves in having a need to collect and analyze social media information. [MG]
Price and Kennedy Launch INFOdocket and FullTextReports
Gary Price and Shirl Kennedy, the founders and senior editors of ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for almost 10 years, have launched InfoDocket posting news and developments announcements for current awareness purposes.
INFOdocket will be our home for new or newly-discovered web resources; reference material we find interesting (lists, rankings, infographics, and factbooks, and other materials); web search tips; relevant news items from the information industry and library community; and some occasional commentary.
FullTextReports.com is the sister site of InfoDocket. There you'll find direct access to new and free full text reports from think tanks, governments around the world, academia, as well as from other sources. Details about their new ventures on LISNews. [JH]
Interested in Knowing More About How Law Librarians Are Involved in Vendor Product Development Testing and Pricing?
After reading Librarian Involvement in Product Development Testing, The CRIV Sheet, Feb. 2011 at 9, I still wanted to know how law librarians are involved in product development and pricing of legal information resources. CRIV member Mary Jenkins' interview piece with representatives from Fastcase, Lexis and Thomson Reuters provides a general overview on how each vendor addresses this matter of interest to law librarians. There are certainly some scripted, professional ego-stroking responses for the audience, ah that would be us, But the CRIV Sheet article does offer glimpses at how each vendor does some things differently. However, one is left wanting to know more in specificity and also wanting to know how BNA and Wolters Kluwer would respond to the questions posed. Follow-up article forthcoming?
This is not a critique of CRIV-member Mary Jenkins' attempt to obtain information from vendors on a subject law librarians find important. It's a good start as long as it does not end here. The article is restricted by print conventions like Rob Myer's recent CRIV article soliciting vendor responses to print format switcheroos.
Moving Beyond the Gutenberg Revolution. This post is intended as an illustration that instead of confining CRIV attempts to solicit vendor answers to issues law librarians and institution buyers want to read to a publishing medium that produced the Gutenberg Bible updated only by PDF distribution, wouldn't the membership be better served by a CRIV-Unleashed blog?
An Example of What the Comment Function to a CRIV-Unleased Blog Could Do. Allow me to describe one example of product development input in action with some specificity. It's a positive story that demonstrates vendors can be responsive to law librarians and other users of new services they offer.
A former law school student of mine who now practices law in my county is blind. During law school we had all sorts of accessibility issues to address, from obtaining course-required textbooks to getting law profs to distribute JAW-friendly handouts and PowerPoints used in class to online legal research using WEXIS. Now that he is practicing law, we have another entirely different set of issues to address but that is not the topic of this post.
To Thomson Reuters credit, there was and is a text-based version of Westlaw with very strong support for learning how to use Westlaw for this student. Not so for Lexis at the time. This student graduated law school without any real exposure to Lexis because it was not sufficiently JAWS accessible.
When Lexis recently launched Lexis Advance for Solos and redesigned the graphic interface of Classic Lexis, both he and I wondered how accessible those services were. While up in Lexis HQ, I posed the question to the product development team for Lexis Advance and got a very positive response. Lexis gave us a login to Lexis Advance for Solos and I temporarily allowed my former student access to the redesigned version of Classic Lexis. After some searching performed and Q&As between my former student, now county law library user, and I about "do you 'see' with Jaws what I see with my eyes" we met with the product development team in Dayton for over two hours.
Both Classic Lexis post-makeover and Lexis Advance are very accessible. There are some different and minor issues but most of the issues we pointed out in the meeting with the Lexis Advance team where known (and were being worked on). There were a couple of issues about pop-ups in Lexis Advance that were not JAWS-friendly but the one thing not known by the team was the typical habits of JAWS-users, particularly with respect to how they use JAWS to navigate. Not a criticsm. One would not expect product developers to know this because they are not seeing-impaired. On this issue, LN's Lexis Advance product development team members took notes and were willing to make adjustments. The meeting was well worth the trip.
A CRIV-Unleashed Blog. I seriously doubt I am the only law librarian who has a story to tell about product development input to a vendor from the user population. Some stories would disclose successes, like this one. Others may disclose failed attempts. Some may demonstrate vendor interest and responsiveness, again, like this one. Some may not. Some may require further action on our part.
Every CIRV Sheet article, interview and FYI notice is blog post-able in a much more timely and publicly accessible manner that would also allow reader commenting along with follow-up posts between CRIV and vendors on topic in a timely manner. Isn't it long overdue for AALL to move beyond the Gutenberg Revolution and join the 21st century? [JH]
The LISNews 10 Blogs To Read in 2011
Blake on LISNews "started the "10 Blogs To Read This Year" way back in 2006 to help highlight the wide range of people writing in the many different areas of librarianship. Each year we've attempted to point out a group of librarians whose writing helps increase our understanding of the profession and it's place in our rapidly changing world. Again this year we tried to choose 10 writers who cover very different aspects of our profession, 10 sites that inform, educate and maybe amuse."
And here is this year's list:
- All These Birds With Teeth
- Forgotten Bookmarks
- Hack Library School
- The LSW Friendfeed Room
- Musings about librarianship
- Pegasus Librarian
- Screwy Decimal
- The Undergraduate Science Librarian
Check out Blake's LISNews post for descriptions and links to each blog in this year's list of 10 blogs to read (as well as for links to prior annual lists). [JH]
February 23, 2011
Legal Research Textbook Reviewers Wanted
The Research Instruction Committee of the RIPS-SIS is looking for persons interested in reviewing legal research texts. Details in the RIPS Law Librarian post. [JH]
Supreme Court Action on Wednesday
The Supreme Court issued two more opinions this morning. The two cases concern whether federal safety regulations preclude a state tort action, and whether California's variable time limits for instituting a habeas corpus petition are reasonable.
The case of Williamson v. Mazda Motor of America, Inc. (08-1314) is a tort action. The minivan in which the Williamsons were driving was struck head on. A daughter riding in the back seat closest to the window died in the crash. She was wearing a lap seat belt rather a lap and shoulder belt. The suit alleged that Mazda should have installed lap and shoulder belts rather than lap belts. The California courts dismissed the suit under U.S. Supreme Court precedent that dealt with the same statute and regulations where the Court held that state tort suits were precluded by operation of the regulation.
The Court decided the earlier case (Geier v. American Honda Motor Co., 529 U. S. 861 (2000)) on the basis of the purpose of the safety regulation covering the kind of safety systems that can be installed in the rear seats of vehicles. Department of Transportation notes at the time of the regulation's implementation showed that a significant Department objective was to make sure that manufacturer's had a choice in developing cost effective safety systems. Lawsuits at the time would have forced the use of airbags which safer, were not cost effective. The Court earlier decision accepted the notion that allowing a lawsuit would have undercut that objective.
Today's decision distinguishes Geier and allows the Williamsons to proceed with their tort action. The Court did not change their analysis from Geier as much as it drew a different conclusion from the record before it. The regulation had changed over the years. The Department of Transportation is not so concerned with giving manufacturers a choice as the sophistication and cost of different saftey systems have improved since the earlier regulation and case. As a tort suit would not defeat a major administrative objective, the Court allowed it here. There were no dissents.
The second case is another in what seems a series this term where the Court forcefully reverses habeas corpus cases favoring prisoners arising out of the Ninth Circuit. The case is Walker v. Martin (09-996). California uses a reasonableness standard in deciding the timeliness of habeas petitions rather than using a fixed time. The rules developed by case law require petitions to be filed as promptly as circumstances allow and petitioners are required to explain delays in presenting a filing. The California courts deny petitions for timeliness by citing the lead precedent. They can also look past the timeliness issue and deny the petition by stating that it has no merit.
Martin filed his petition, citing ineffective assistance of counsel, in the California state courts some five years after conviction. His petition was denied as untimely as he offered no explanation of the delay. The District Court denied his federal petition as having been decided on independent state grounds. The Ninth Circuit reversed, holding that the variable time California allowed was to vague to be an independent state ground. It viewed the time bar to be undefined and applied inconsistently.
One of the elements to the rule limiting federal consideration is whether the state procedural rule used as a bar is firmly established. The Supreme Court held that even though the California rule was discretionary, it was firmly established. As to the different possible outcomes in California, these are adequately informed by case law even though many petitions at the state level are summarily denied. It didn't help Martin's position when he failed to allege that inconsistent application of rules affected his chances in California. His was a blanket attack on the rule. As such, the Ninth Circuit, is, yet again, reversed in the habeas corpus context. [MG]
Why The Largest Publishers Require Us To Unite Efforts In Consumer Advocacy
In “Three Jermaids” (12/23/2010 NY Review of Books), Robert Darnton describes how exorbitant pricing of journal subscriptions has strained academic library budgets. Because academic libraries have had to spend much more on journals, they have much less to spend on monographs, including university press publications – with harmful consequences for scholarship. While he favors open access projects as a long-term remedy, Darnton observes that “prices of commercial journals continue to rise.” Do librarians have another remedy?
We do. We can resort to consumer advocacy, of the kind that my organization – the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) – once embraced, but has since rejected. (See my arguments in the latest issue of AALL’s newsletter, and a rejoinder by two former AALL Presidents.) In 1969, law librarian Raymond Taylor published an article in the American Bar Association (ABA) Journal, “Law Book Consumers Need Protection.” Taylor was a member of AALL’s Committee on Relations with Publishers and Dealers. He identified deceptive and other unfair business practices by legal publishers to increase profits at their customers’ expense. His seminal article led the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to adopt legal guidelines for the law book publishing industry in 1975, with support from the ABA, several state bars, and AALL. The FTC could enforce the guidelines by administrative actions or lawsuits, and consumers of legal publication could also use them to sustain claims in class action lawsuits. The FTC rescinded these and other industry guidelines in 2000, but while in effect, the guidelines for legal publishers helped restore fair dealing in advertising, billing, and sales of legal publications. (AALL stills asks legal publishers to voluntarily follow A Guide to Fair Business Practices, despite a record of repeated violations.)
The former legal publishing guidelines were not designed to prevent or reverse escalating increases in the prices of legal subscriptions. Nevertheless, Taylor’s example sets a precedent for more sweeping action by all of us – librarians across the full spectrum of the profession. For we have the means to challenge not only unfair business practices among publishers, but also anti-competitive pricing of “bundled” subscriptions. (A publisher bundles subscriptions when it charges the subscribing library for a licensed group, or package, of electronic or print subscriptions, or both.)
All types of libraries incur substantial harm – individually and together – from non-disclosure clauses in the provisions of their licenses. Such provisions are but one example of unfair business conduct by publishing conglomerates. All types of libraries also face unsustainable price increases in subscription bundling from a handful of publishers that dominate their respective publishing markets. For instance, the three largest legal publishers occupy almost 90% of the legal publishing market in the U.S.. Thomson-Reuters/Legal has a 40% market share. Oligopolies, or dominant market shares, characterize the markets of publishers that license academic library subscriptions to scientific, medical, technical, scholarly, professional and trade publications, and that license public library subscriptions.
Do we have evidence that publishers leverage their dominant market positions to stifle competition from university presses and smaller publishers? If libraries cancel electronic or print subscriptions when renewing a licensing agreement, publishers typically require them to pay increased prices across remaining products and services of the licensed package. Even where a library might switch to lower-priced alternatives, this arrangement leaves it without savings to do so. Because the same publishers also demand non-disclosure, consumers can not disclose to each other the renewal terms of price increases or discounts for specific subscriptions. In oligopoly publishing markets, or markets with “dominant” publishers, such practices by publishers at least raise a credible appearance of creating barriers to entry by lower-priced competitors.
We can build upon the consumer advocacy movement that Taylor inspired, but only by working together, through a coalition. (My colleague Bryan Carson proposes a coalition to address unfair business practices.) As a coalition, we could investigate evidence of unfair and anti-competitive practices of the largest publishers. We could work together to achieve legal reforms, by raising public awareness, seeking FTC intervention, or even – as warranted by evidence – pursuing class action lawsuits.
We have a proud tradition of defending our values. We have never limited ourselves, as AALL now does, to supporting increased public availability of only government publication. We have equally valued increased public access to all forms of copyrighted publication. But we can not advance this more inclusive ideal, without a collective commitment to consumer advocacy.
By Michael Ginsborg, a law librarian and AALL member for over 20 years.
Originally published on ACRLog, Consumer Advocacy and Scholarly Publishing (Feb. 4, 2011). Republished with permission of the author.
Ever Hear of the FBI's "Going Dark" Program to Expand Surveillance Because of the "Intercept Capability Gap"?
In Newly Released Documents Detail FBI’s Plan to Expand Federal Surveillance Laws, EFF is reporting it just received documents "in response to a 2-year old FOIA request for information on the FBI’s "Going Dark" program, an initiative to increase the FBI's authority in response to problems the FBI says it's having implementing wiretap and pen register/trap and trace orders on new communications technologies. The documents detail a fully-formed and well-coordinated plan to expand existing surveillance laws and develop new ones."
According to EFF:
The FBI states the Going Dark program is a "five-prong strategic approach to address the lawful 'Intercept capability gap'". These five prongs are:
- modernization /amendment of existing laws,
- enhancing authorities to protect industry proprietary and [law enforcement] sensitive lawful intercept information, equipment and techniques,
- enhancing [law enforcement] agencies' coordination leveraging technical expertise of FBI with other [law enforcement] entities,
- enhancing lawful intercept cooperation between the communications industry and [law enforcement agencies] with a "One Voice" approach, and
- seeking new federal funding to bolster lawful intercept capabilities.
Remember our government's Cold War ballistic missile capability gap? This time the warheads are targeted at us. [JH]
February 22, 2011
Supreme Court Action Today
The Supreme Court issued two opinions today, one of which is getting wide news coverage. That decision is Bruesewitz v. Wyeth LLC. (09-152). The case involves the tort immunity Congress granted pharmaceutical companies for claims over vaccine-related adverse side effects when it passed the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 (NCVIA). That act sets up special procedures to litigate alleged injuries stemming from vaccinations. Plaintiffs are directed to file a petition with the Court of Federal Claims naming the Health and Human Secretary as a respondent. The Court is required to resolve the case within a deadline. A plaintiff dissatisfied with the result must decide then whether to accept or reject the judgment and file a tort claim against the manufacturer. However, the Act limits the options for plaintiffs compared to traditional products liability analysis.
The relevant part of the Act reads:
[n]o vaccine manufacturer shall be liable in a civil action for damages arising from a vaccine-related injury or death associated with the administration of a vaccine after October 1, 1988, if the injury or death resulted from side-effects that were unavoidable even though the vaccine was properly prepared and was accompanied by proper directions and warnings. (42 U. S. C. §300aa–22(b)(1))
In this case, parents of an allegedly injured child followed the procedures outlined in the Act but rejected the negative decision from the Court of Federal Claims. They filed suit in Pennsylvania state court alleging that a design defect in defendant's vaccine caused their child's injury. The case was removed to federal court, where the District Judge held the Act preempted Pennsylvania products liability law and their suit. The Third Circuit affirmed.
The Supreme Court affirmed, stating the NCVIA preempts all design-defect claims against vaccine manufacturers brought by plaintiffs seeking compensation for injury or death caused by a vaccine’s side effects. The Court justified this by looking at the grammar of the statute. Here's a sample (footnotes omitted):
But petitioners’ reading eliminates any opposition between the “even though” clause — called a concessive subordinate clause by grammarians — and the word “unavoidable.” Their reading makes preemption turn equally on unavoidability, proper preparation, and proper labeling. Thus, the dissent twice refers to the requirements of proper preparation and proper labeling as “two additional prerequisites” for preemption independent of unavoidability. The primary textual justification for the dissent’s position depends on that independence. But linking independent ideas is the job of a coordinating junction like “and,” not a subordinating junction like “even though.”
The Court further used the structure of the Act, the mention of some possible tort grounds, but not design defects, and the mandated contributions by manufacturers to the fund used by the Court of Federal Claims to make awards as additional justifications for its conclusions.
This case involved the vaccine for diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis. It doesn't take much imagination to suggest that this case will preclude design defect liability in cases involving the hotly disputed link between vaccines an autism.
The second case is a bit more mundane in its facts, though it also turns on statutory construction rules. The case is CSX Transportation, Inc. v. Alabama Department of Revenue (09-520). It revolves around the interpretation of a clause in the Railroad Revitalization and Regulatory Reform Act of 1976 (4–R Act) prohibiting discriminatory taxes against a railroad.
CSX pays taxes in Alabama for the purchase and consumption of diesel fuel. Alabama exempts interstate motor carriers and water carriers from these same taxes. CSX sued under the 4-R Act. The District Court dismissed the suit on the basis of an earlier Supreme Court precedent allowing state discrimination in imposing property taxes on railroads and competitors. The Supreme Court reversed. It held that the earlier case did not apply to this situation as exemptions for levying property taxes is specifically addressed in the statute. Congress did not display any intent to extend the exemption analysis to non-property taxes. [MG]
Taking Affordability Into Account for Law School Rankings
On WSJ Law Blog Nathan Koppel reports on Malcom Gladwell's attempt to rank law school taking affordability into account based on a weighted three factor method: the value of the tuition dollar (40%), LSAT scores (40%) and faculty publishing (20%). Koppel writes "Gladwell’s criteria produces some eye-raising results: UC-Berkeley at 27th; NYU at at 33rd, and Michigan at a lowly 43rd, below the Univ. of Puerto Rico."
For Gladwell's Top 10 law schools, see Malcom Gladwell Ranks the Law Schools! (Congrats to BYU). For more see Gladwell's New Yorker article, The Order of Things (subscription required). [JH]
Bringing Serious Gaming to Legal Skills Training: Integrating Doctrinal Education with Simulation
Knowing that law school grades have little if anything to do with evaluating success in practicing law, Dutch BigLaw firm Houthoff Buruma teamed up with Ranj Serious Games to create "The Game" as a recruitment tool. Trailer below. The objective is to expose potential hires to what working at a top-tier law firm would be like. In Dutch Law Firm Uses Video Game to Evaluate Law Graduates’ Talent, ABAJ's Laala Al Jaber and Sarah Randag describe the game as follows:
Players of "The Game"—graduating law students in the Netherlands—are given a complex legal scenario wherein they must represent a Chinese state-owned company as it plans to take over a Dutch family company. The players are split into teams of up to five people, given 90 minutes to confront problems as they arise and persuade enough shareholders to sell their shares. The fast-paced legal challenge ascertains how lawyers cope with stressful situations, bombarding them with CNN news flashes, video and text chats, film clips, e-mails and more than 100 fictional documents. Once the game ends, the results are displayed, and each team is given the opportunity to justify their solutions.
"The Game" was awarded the European Innovative Games Award in November 2010 and and Best Use of Technology to Support Marketing Efforts Award at the 2011 Hubbard One Excellence in Legal Marketing Awards. For much more, see “The Game” stuns attendees at legal marketing awards program on Legal Current (Jaap Bosman, Head of Marketing at Houthoff Buruma: “Everyone is welcome to come and play The Game at our offices. We have had the young section of Association of Dutch In-house Counsel come and play, competing against our young lawyers. We have even had clients asking if they can come and play. It has turned out to be a great networking tool.”)
Very interesting development. While any given law school probably could not afford to develop something with "The Game's" high production value, someone "out there" might see that bringing the world of serious gaming to teach legal skills in a manner that integrates doctrinal education with simulation just might be an untapped market in the legal academy, for in-house law firm training, even for CLE. Will we be seeing WEXIS gaming divisions in the not too distant future? This just might be part of the solution to the chronic problem of teaching aspiring lawyers how to practice their chosen profession. [JH]
Welcome to the Blogosphere: O'Grady Launches Dewey B Strategic: Risk, value, strategy, libraries, knowledge and the legal profession
BigLaw firm library director Jean O'Grady launched Dewey B Strategic last week and if her first post is any indication of what's to follow, her blog's feed will be worth subscribing to. See "Vendor Sourcing" : Thinking the unthinkable as a strategic alternative to outsourcing.
Hat tip to 3 Geeks. Greg Lambert writes "Anyone that has ever talked with O'Grady knows that she's not afraid to step up and point out when something doesn't smell right." [JH]
February 21, 2011
Comparative Criminal Procedure Guide to English-language Resources
U of Chicago law profs Ginsburg and McAdams have compiled a list of selected English-language resources on comparative criminal procedure. The guide was produced for their Comparative Criminal Procedure Seminar. The "Resources by Subject" page contains materials organized by: 1) country or region and 2) notable sub-topics within criminal procedure. From the description:
It focuses on journal articles, book chapters, and treatises covering comparative criminal procedure generally, criminal procedure in multiple jurisdictions, and specialized research topics in comparative criminal procedure such as: arrest, pre-trial detention, interrogation, right to counsel, legal assistance for indigent defendants, discovery, plea bargaining, trial by jury, the privilege against self-incrimination, inquisitorial versus accusatorial systems, role of prosecutors, judges and defense attorneys, cross-examination, exclusionary rules, sentencing, death penalty, criminal appeals, and double jeopardy.
Hat tip to beSpacific. [JH]
Which Pre-Law Program Makes More $ense, Cornell's or Above the Law's?
ATL's Elie Mystal evaluates Cornell's “Pre-Law Summer” program. The program's main benefit is helping undergrads answer five key questions about being a lawyer.
- How do the careers of lawyers portrayed in Boston Legal and Law & Order compare to those of real-life lawyers?
- How much of my legal career will involve arguing over lofty Constitutional issues?
- Will my success as a lawyer hinge on being the smartest person in the room?
- Will I make a lot of money if I go to law school and become a lawyer?
- What’s so great about being a lawyer?
Cornell charges a whopping $4,970 for its “intensive, six-week program taught in New York City.” And that does not include food and lodging in NYC.
As an ATL public service Mystal provides both long and short answers for each of the above questions and suggests students save money by simply reading ATL for six weeks. He concludes his post with the following warning: "Cornell’s Pre-Law summers, you are now on notice. If you give these people $5,000, it’s your own damn fault." [JH]