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September 30, 2010

GPO Access to Shut Down by End of Year - Being Replaced by FDsys

From the U.S. Government Printing Office:

The sunset of GPO Access is planned for the end of 2010. At this time, FDsys will assume the role as GPO's electronic system of record. Migration of all content from GPO Access to FDsys will be complete by October 2010, and the two systems will run in parallel through the end of the year.

Program: Putting the Wisconsin Idea Online

Next month the UW Madison is hosting a free program called Putting the Wisconsin Idea Online. The program will highlight how campus researchers have used the Web to fulfill the Wisconsin Idea by making their research available not only throughout Wisconsin, but all over the world.

When: 19 October 2010, 9am - 4pm
Where: Memorial Library Commons (room 460)

The program is being organized by Dorothea Salo, Digital Repository Librarian at the UW Madison. Dorothea is well known in the institutional repository and scholarly communications communities. She'll be giving the opening talk on Who Owns Our Work? Copyright and the Working Researcher.

Other speakers include:

  • Associate Dean Susan C. Cook on UW-Madison's new electronic dissertation program
  • Julie Schneider, director of Ebling Health Sciences Library, on the NIH Public Access Policy
  • Sam Batzli of the Space Science and Engineering Center on WisconsinView, http://wisconsinview.org/
  • John Hawks, Kris Olds, and the UW Law School's own Shubha Ghosh on scholarly weblogging

The full schedule is available on the UW Madison Libraries website. Registering for this event is optional but much appreciated.

This event is scheduled to coincide with Open Access Week 2010.

September 29, 2010

State Bar Board of Governors Opposes Petition to Amend or Repeal Diploma Privilege

From the State Bar of Wisconsin news:

The State Bar of Wisconsin's Board of Governors voted 32-6 to oppose a petition submitted by 71 Wisconsin attorneys that would expand Wisconsin's diploma privilege to out-of-state law school graduates or repeal it altogether.
Read more in the full post.

Decisions about Obama's Visit to Campus Yesterday

Today's New York Times offers a very interesting look at the political and administrative decisions behind President Obama's visit to the UW Madison campus yesterday, as well as the logistical details.

September 27, 2010

NY Courts: Expect All Facebook Posts to be Considered Public Information

3 Geeks and a Law Blog reports on two opinions from NY regarding access to both public and private Facebook posts.

Bottom line in New York (and possibly every place else in the United States): Expect everything you post on Facebook or MySpace to be considered public information by the courts, and don't expect that your self-imposed privacy settings will protect you if you're ever taken to court.
Read the full post for more on the opinions.

Latest UW Law School Faculty & Staff Scholarship

Here is the latest faculty scholarship from the UW Law School Legal Studies Research Paper Series via SSRN.

In addition, here are some recent publications authored or co-authored by clinical faculty at the UW Law School.

  • Leslie Shear co-authored an article in the September 2010 volume of the American Psychologist that examines research on children's contact with their incarcerated parents, and recommends best practices for such contact.

  • Ken Streit and Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisolm co-authored an article in the September 2010 edition of the Wisconsin Lawyer that outlines problems with Wisconsin's Truth-in-Sentencing scheme and recommends legislative changes.

  • Keith Findley participated in Cardozo Law School's 2009 symposium on prosecutors' disclosure obligations, and acted as the reporter for a working group that described a "best practices" disclosure process for prosecutors' offices. This report was included in the June 2010 volume of the Cardozo Law Review.

  • In addition, a few months ago, Keith's article entitled "Innocence Protection in the Appellate Project" was published in the Marquette Law Review.

September 17, 2010

Wisconsin Law Journal Redesigns Website - with New RSS Feed Links

The Wisconsin Law Journal recently launched a website redesign. The layout is very clean and attractive and offers lots of web 2.0 features such as alerts, RSS feeds, Twitter and Facebook feeds and more.

One thing to note, however: If you previously subscribed to any of the WLJ RSS feeds, you'll need to resubscribe now since the links have changed. See the list of feed options.

Hat tip to my colleague and WLJ blogger, Bev Butula.

Matrix Codes to Appear on WI Bills, Amendments, & Resolutions

Starting in January 2011, Wisconsin legislative proposals (bills, amendments, and resolutions) will display a graphic code called a "matrix code" that contains a URL, or hyperlink.

From the Wisconsin Legislative Reference Bureau:

With an Internet-connected cell phone, you can scan the matrix code to display an associated Web page. If the proposal has been introduced, the matrix code will link to the bill status Web page. If the proposal has not been introduced, the matrix code will link to a page that reads, "No legislative proposal with that LRB number has been introduced. Wisconsin statutes require that bills, amendments, and resolutions remain confidential until they are introduced."
Read more from the LRB.

Thanks to LRB Chief, Steve Miller for the heads up on this exciting new development. I'm constantly amazed by the wonderful things that the LRB does with technology, from digital content, to RSS feeds, to Twitter, to podcasting / webcasting, and now matrix codes. We Wisconsinites are truly lucky to have such a progressive group working to make the legislative process more accessible.

Find Wisconsin Voter and Poll Information

From Found in Wisconsin

The Elections Division of the WI Government Accountability Board provides information to look up voter registration and polling place location, look up polling place location for an address, and check provisional vote status by using the Voter Public Access link. The site also contains information on alternative sources for polling place information.

September 15, 2010

Conference - Legal Education Reform after Carnegie: Bringing Law-in-Action into the Law School Classroom

Next month, the University of Wisconsin Law School and the Institute for Legal Studies is hosting conference for faculty, staff, law students, and visiting scholars entitled Legal Education Reform after Carnegie: Bringing Law-in-Action into the Law School Classroom. The conference will be held October 22-23, 2010.

Intellectual Overview: This conference takes its impetus from a current wave of interest in reforming legal education. Recent publication of both the Carnegie Report and a statement of Best Practices for Legal Education have drawn attention to innovative pedagogical efforts in law schools across the country. We continue the conversation in this conference, focusing in particular on how the law works in action, and on how a law-in-action perspective can inform our teaching. This is a unique moment in the history of the legal academy, when interest in pedagogical reform is arising simultaneously with renewed attention to social science. At the same time, many law teachers are experimenting with new teaching methods designed to bring law to life in the classroom. Today there is the potential for a kind of synergy not seen since the rise of legal realism and the push for clinical education in law schools.

Carnegie Report authors join law school deans and law professors at a two-day conference in Madison, home of the law-in-action approach with a longstanding tradition of combining social science and law. But we seek to highlight the advances at other institutions as well. This is just a beginning -- we invite you to share your wisdom and ideas as we continue the process of rethinking legal education, working together. Stay tuned for plans to launch a national website, hosted by the American Bar Foundation, where examples and ideas from all law schools will be welcomed.

Program Chair: Elizabeth Mertz, John and Rylla Bosshard Professor of Law at the University of Wisconsin Law School, and Senior Research Fellow at the American Bar Foundation; Visiting Research Scholar, Program in Law and Public Affairs, Princeton University (2010-11).

Location: The Conference will take place in room 325 at the Pyle Center, 702 Langdon Street, Madison.

Friday, 10/22: Coffee 9:30 am; Sessions 10:00-5:30 (followed by a reception and dinner for panelists and speakers.) Saturday, 10/23: Coffee 8:30 am; Sessions 9:00-4:30 (followed by post-conference session for planning group 4:45-6:00).

Registration Required / Deadline Oct. 11th: Due to space constraints, attendance is limited to faculty, academic staff, law students, and visiting scholars. If you are interested in attending this event, please email Pam Hollenhorst, Associate Director, Institute for Legal Studies, including your full name and institutional affiliation, indicating which days or half days you wish to attend.

September 14, 2010

Wisconsin Newspapers available via BadgerLink

From Wisconsin InfoLink:

BadgerLink -- the state's online full-text library collections -- now has access to five years of complete PDF pages from more than 250 Wisconsin newspapers, dailies and weeklies....

The collection goes back to March 2005 and will continue to grow as current editions are added to the database. There is a 60-day embargo placed on the newspaper pages, so the most recent issues to search will always be two months old.

I've blogged about BadgerLink before. Remember that it is available to all Wisconsinites through the DPI. It's a wonderful resource with thousands of full text magazines and journals, newspapers and newswires, and full text reference books.

This service is available in many WI libraries, including the UW libraries, and through entry of a library card number. It is not available statewide through IP address authentication as are other BadgerLink resources. Users will be able to access it through the BadgerLink website by clicking on Newspapers under Resources by Type.

Butler Renominated for U.S. District Judge

From the Wisconsin State Journal:

President Barack Obama has again nominated Louis B. Butler Jr. to replace John Shabaz as U.S. District Judge for the Western District of Wisconsin, the White House announced Monday.
See also the press release from the White House.

September 9, 2010

Appeals Court Rules Counsel May 'Google' Potential Jurors During Jury Selection

A New Jersey appellate court found that a prohibition against "Googling" potential jurors to gain additional information about them was unreasonable. Read more at Legal Blog Watch.

UW Law School's Dean Davis to Step Down, Return to Faculty

UW Law School Dean Kenneth B. Davis Jr. announced yesterday that he will step down in September 2011 and return to the faculty.

From the UW Madison Press Release:

During his tenure as dean, Davis has steadily worked to raise the Law School's stature and visibility. Its national ranking has climbed along with its ability to attract top students from across the state and nation.

Davis attributes these accomplishments in part to the school's national reputation as a leader in diversity and its focus on "law in action."

Davis has also led an initiative called "Preeminent and Public," which encouraged those at the Law School to consider ways to advance its national stature and influence while at the same time being true to its mission as Wisconsin's only public law school.

That initiative has led to enhanced standards for faculty accountability and productivity, a more merit-based compensation system and expanded student learning opportunities in areas such as business law and professional skills.

WI Public Records Opinions & Documents Available on DOJ Site

The State Bar reports that the Wisconsin Department of Justice website now offers access to information about Wisconsin Public Records Law.

The site includes:

  • Attorney General Opinions on Public Records Issues
  • Sample Public Records Documents
  • Other Public Records Resources

Make any PDF a Fill-in-the-Blank Form

In the September edition of WSLL @ Your Service, there is a useful Tech Tip in Brief by Heidi Yelk.

She highlights a free tool called PDF X-Change which allows you to fill in the blanks for any PDF form. See the full tip for more.

September 8, 2010

Juror Must Pay Fine and Write Essay for Posting Verdict on Facebook while Case Still Being Tried

From 3 Geeks and a Law Blog:

You have to admire the punishment that Judge Diane Druzinski handed down to a juror that updated her Facebook status to say that it was "gonna be fun to tell the defendant they're GUILTY." Apparently, Judge Druzinski doesn't like it when a juror posts a verdict on a case that was STILL BEING TRIED.

Apparently, the punishment included a lecture from the judge about violating her oath as a juror, a fine of $250.00, and a five-page essay on the importance of the Sixth Amendment.

Read more at 3 Geeks

September 3, 2010

Search Social Media Sites with Google Realtime

Google recently released a new search interface for real-time results from social media tools such as Twitter, Facebook, blogs and more called Google Realtime.

Read more about it at the Official Google Blog.

Source: Robert Ambrogi's LawSites

September 1, 2010

Lawyers Increasingly Using Facebook; Search Facebook Posts with Openbook

ABA Site-tation has a very interesting post on Facebook Privacy, Lawyer Social Networking, Online Reputation Management, and Case Investigations.
It begins:

According to the 2010 Legal Technology Survey Report: Web and Communication Technology volume lawyer respondents increasingly use social networking sites. Reasons reported include for professional networking (76%), client development (42%), and case investigation (6%). Recent security and privacy issues surrounding Facebook have implications for use of Facebook by lawyers and their clients in the areas of online reputation management and case investigation.

The post also mentions a search engine called Openbook which searches people's Facebook posts. As the post notes, "Openbook could be used as a tool for online reputation management or case investigation; however, note that different states may have differing ethics rules on the use of social networking sites for case investigation."

See the full Site-tation post for more.