HeinOnline announced that it has placed its "how to" tutorials on YouTube. The videos cover the basics of searching and navigating HeinOnline, as well as how to get the most out of HeinOnline's U.S. Congressional Documents library.
CourtListener, the latest free-legal-research platform, has launched with an impressive line-up of features.
In addition to a searchable database of millions of state and federal opinions with a powerful search engine, CourtListener also boasts an archive of PACER federal court filings (via RECAP), judicial profiles, oral argument audio from state and federal courts, and a gallery of intriguing U.S. Supreme Court visualizations.
From time to time, we like to remind USF law students, faculty, and staff about our interlibrary loan services. If you are a current student or current member of our law faculty and staff and you locate a book or article that you need for research that isn't available at USF, law library staff can request copies of these materials for you from other libraries across the country. While loan periods for interlibrary loan (ILL) books are more restrictive (typically, a 3-week loan period is authorized by the lending library), this service allows you to obtain materials from academic libraries in other areas of the nation. Just remember that each USF library processes ILL requests separately. Law students, faculty, and staff must file ILL requests with the law library, and non-law USF library patrons must file ILL requests with Gleeson Library.
USF law, graduate, and undergraduate students may now make individual research appointments with a Zief Law Library research librarian. (Appointments with Zief Law Library research librarians are only available to current USF students. Other authorized Zief Library users with research questions may visit the research desk in person, or call 415-422-6773.)
The major advantage to making a research appointment is that you will have the librarians un-divided attention and it is far less likely that you will be interrupted during your consultation.
Please use the link next to the names of the librarians - note that the URLs are case sensitive:
This year we're excited to watch the University of San Francisco Law Review move toward an entirely paperless editing cycle. Led by Editor-in-Chief Robin Bennett, the USF Law
Review Board is pursuing this goal by aggregating digital article drafts,
sources cited, and other information on a SharePoint site accessible to all
editors and staff.
As part of this initiative, the Zief Library is advising the Law Review on finding the most stable, reliable digital documents for source collection. This has meant wrestling with the Bluebook and its insistence on official sources and its bias in favor of print.
Our approach includes creating a Google Notebook on Law Review Source Collection with links to the most authoritative and most stable PDF sources for the sorts of documents (law review articles, cases, statutes, regulations, Congressional documents) commonly cited in law review articles — and then training all Law Review staff in tips and techniques for using the top sites, like HeinOnline and GPO Access. There are still times when the Law Review has to pull and scan paper sources, but they're well on the way toward paperless production of their journal.
The Chronicle of Higher Education points out in this article that a new report on the US prison population and spending has just been released. The report is the work of the Pew Center of the States and is titled One in 100: Behind Bars in America 2008 (click here to link directly to a 37 page .pdf file.) Why the interest by the Chronicle of Higher Education, you may ask? Well, it turns out that there are now 5 states (Vermont, Michigan, Oregon, Connecticut, and Delaware) that spend more on corrections than they do on higher education. California, with an $8.8 Billion budget for corrections is very close to this mark spending 83 cents on correction for every dollar spent on higher education. This report is a treasure trove of statistics and bibliographical information for anyone interested in prisons, policy, or the general population.
Both the Public Library of Law and Justia have federal circuit court cases going back to 1950. Their search engines are user-friendly, and each allows you to limit your search to a particular circuit.
(The Public Library of Law and Justia (via its Supreme Court Center) also have all Supreme Court decisions. In addition, Justia has federal district court opinions from 2004 to the present, and the Public Library of Law has state appellate and high court cases from 1997 to the present.)
Why so much new federal case law all of a sudden? As Robert Ambrogi explains it, in mid-February public.resource.org and the Creative Commons jointly released 18 million pages of public domain federal case law. After that, it was just a matter of days before Justia and the Public Library of Law took this raw data and rolled out search engines for the decisions.
In our daily jobs, we encounter a staggering amount of U.S. government information and services that can benefit your life. From saving money and visiting National Parks to finding out about government auctions and the latest recalls, we want to bring these resources to you in a new way—through our blog.
This is not the site to go to conduct a legislative history or to track current regulations but it might be fun to add to your collection of blog feeds -- who knows when you might need to know about the Fed's take on Preparing for a Baby on a Budget or Buying a New Car.
Most of us have heard of Yale Law Journal's Pocket Part and Harvard Law Review's Forum. But did you know about Texas Law Review's See Also or Connecticut Law Review's CONNtemplations? Ken Strutin has compiled a very handy list on LLRX of all of the law reviews that have created some sort of online forum that allows for debate and discussion of the articles published by the law reviews. These websites can be great resources for students who are researching note or law school paper topics.
Robert Ambrogi has an excellent piece on Law.com this week, "Legal Wikis Are Bound to Wow You," which describes how wikis are being used to promote legal scholarship and "lawyer-to-lawyer collaboration." Ambrogi also supplies a large list of legal wikis, including the Death Penalty Wiki and the Internet Law Treatise sponsored by the Electronic Frontier Foundation. What's a wiki? It's a website that allows individuals to edit the content of the site collectively. Wikis can be open to edits from the entire world, or they can be password-protected so that only particular individuals can contribute content. What are the origins of the word "wiki"? It's allegedly derived from the Hawaiian word "wiki," which means "quick."