Thursday, March 29, 2007

The U.S. Supreme Court Justices Database

The U.S. Supreme Court Justices Database is funded by the the National Science Foundation, Law and Social Science Program. Northwestern University Law Professor Lee Eptstein is one of the principal investigators. According to the website:
This is a multi-user, public database containing a wealth of information on individuals nominated (whether confirmed or not) to the U.S. Supreme Court (John Jay-Samuel A. Alito, Jr). Specifically, the Database houses 263 variables, falling roughly into five categories: identifiers, background characteristics and personal attributes, nomination and confirmation, service on the Court, and departures from the bench.
From the Law Librarian Blog.

N.Y. Subway Hero Sues Lawyer Over Contract

This story is certainly depressing:
N.Y. Subway Hero Sues Lawyer Over Contract

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

2008 U.S. News Rankings

Concurring Opinions blog, Law School Innovation blog and other legal blogs are reporting that the 2008 U.S. News and World Report Law School Rankings may have been released early (or leaked). You can view the list here. I don't know whether these rankings are accurate, but they are certain to be discussed with interest.
[UPDATE (3/30): It's official].

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

New Legal Magazine for Non-lawyers

Robert Ambrogi (citing the the Boston Business Journal) reports that Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly is launching a new Massachusetts legal magazine for non-lawyers. "Called Exhibit A, the first issue will offer advice for drivers when stopped by police, discuss the legal consequences of scalping Red Sox tickets and feature a cover story on the state's 10 most notorious criminals." This seems like a really good idea. Perhaps we're seeing the start of a trend that will spread to other states.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Census Data on Domestic Violence Released

beSpacific has the details:
"A report detailing the first National Census of Domestic Violence Services (NCDVS) has been released and includes statistics collected from 1,243 of the 2,016 identified local domestic violence programs across the United States. Designed to address the safety and confidentiality needs of victims, this Census collected an unduplicated, non-invasive count of adults and children who received critical services from local domestic violence programs during the 24-hour survey period. Since approximately 62 percent of local domestic violence programs in the U.S. participated, this Census provides a powerful glimpse of the actual number of victims who sought and received services from local domestic violence programs nationwide in a 24-hour period. The 2006 NCDVS results are highlighted in a report entitled, Domestic Violence Counts, released by the National Network to End Domestic Violence. To view the executive summary select here."

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Friday's Lighter Side of the Law (Thursday Edition)

ACLU sues school after girl is punished over Winnie the Pooh socks

Opera star wins "underwear throwing" case

Jurors swayed by pretty defendants

Law Professor Wendy Seltzer Takes on the NFL

Bay City Rollers suing former label for millions

Mich. Man Gets $122,400 for Cat Bite

Procter & Gamble Awarded $19.25 Million in Satanism Lawsuit

Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers

"The National Endowment for the Humanities and the Library of Congress today announced that "Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers" is debuting online with more than 226,000 pages of public domain newspapers from California, Florida, Kentucky, New York, Utah, Virginia, and the District of Columbia published between 1900 and 1910. The text of the newspapers is fully searchable, and search terms can be limited to a particular state, a specific newspaper, by year or years of publication and even by months."

From beSpacific.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

iAbolish

InSite recently wrote about iAbolish. From InSite:
iAbolish is the website of the American Anti-Slavery Group (AASG), a non-profit founded in 1994 devoted to ending modern day slavery. AASG pursues its goal by “promoting awareness, engaging in advocacy and activism, and providing direct aid for victims.” The website is a communication vehicle for the group. In addition to the background and history of AASG, the main feature of the site is material discussing the current state of slavery — AASG estimates that more than twenty-seven million people are enslaved today. Users of the site can pick up various fast facts while learning more about the four types of slavery: chattel slavery, debt bondage, sex slavery, and forced labor. Essays on slavery are posted to the site, including pieces that address the situations in the U.S. and India, which, it is claimed, has more slaves than any other country. The site also provides news items and links to related organizations.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Pilot Program to Make Federal Court Recordings Available Online

Pilot Program to Make Free Audio Recordings of Court Proceedings Available Online:
The federal judiciary approved a pilot program this week to make free audio recordings of court proceedings available online. Although a court's participation in the program is voluntary, U.S. District Judge Thomas F. Hogan, the executive committee chairman of the policy-making Judicial Conference, said he expects the system ultimately will be widely used.
From Cleveland Law Library Web Blog.

Ohio Hoping to Link All Courts on One Web Site

The Cleveland Plain Dealer has an article discussing a plan to link all Ohio courts records on one site. "The Ohio Supreme Court hopes to launch an online site by December that within two years could contain legal records from all 385 Ohio courts - from the high court down through the municipals." Anyone who has ever tried to get documents from Ohio courts knows this development would be a big deal.

From Cleveland Law Library Web Blog.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Friday's Lighter Side of the Law

Man Tells Cops Unicorn Caused Crash - No, He Didn't.

Leprechaun Warns Drivers to Slow Down

Have a happy and safe St. Patrick's Day!

TimesSelect Free for Faculty and Students

The New York Times is offering complimentary TimesSelelect subscriptions to university students and faculty. A valid ".edu" university e-mail address is needed to subscribe. Faculty and students can sign up here.

From BoleyBlogs.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Justice Scalia Says Future Nominees Will Face Bitter Fights

Justice Antonin Scalia, while speaking at the University of Toledo on Tuesday (3/13), expressed his opinion that future U.S. Supreme Court nominees will face bitter and partisan confirmation battles. Justice Scalia spent the majority of this time discussing Constitutional interpretation, but addressed other issues such as judicial pay.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Casemaker Publisher to Provide Online ORC & OAC

Casemaker Publisher to be Exclusive Online Provider for Ohio Legislative Service Commission:
Lawriter LLC, the publisher of the Casemaker Law Libraries, has been awarded an exclusive contract as web publisher to provide the Ohio Legislative Service Commission (LSC) online versions of the Ohio Revised Code (ORC) and Ohio Administrative Code (OAC). This online version is also made available to the general public.

The new contract with Lawriter replaces LSC’s previous agreement with Lexis, which also bid on the contract along with Thomson West.

From Cleveland Law Library Weblog.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Progress Report on State Government Internet Presence

The National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO) has released its report, Harmony Helps: A Progress Report on State Government Internet Presence - March 2007. "This brief explores how state web portals have matured and examines the impact of the 2003 expansion of the dot-gov domain to state and local governments; trends in state portal domain naming conventions; trends in Internet portal branding and marketing; the alignment of agency websites and state email addressing with the state portal; areas of cross-boundary collaboration for online services; and areas for future progress in cross-boundary collaboration for online services."

From beSpacific.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Statutes of Limitations Chart

The folks at Nolo have created a chart with statutes of limitations for all 50 states. The chart can't act as substitute for actually reading the relevant statutes; however, the chart does provide helpful notations which indicate where the relevant statutory provisions are located.

From Librarians' Internet Index.

Libby-Rich Connection

You may or may not remember President Clinton's pardon of Marc Rich at the end of his presidency. Peter Lattman at the WSJ Law Blog notes the interesting fact that Scooter Libby, attorney at law, represented Marc Rich at one point. Pardons for client and lawyer? What does this mean? Probably nothing, but it's interesting nevetheless. It's definitely good to have friends in high places if you're heading to the federal pen.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Recent Ohio Incest Decision

I have had a few folks ask me about the recent Ohio Supreme Court incest decision, State v. Lowe, that was decided last week. The decision can be downloaded here from the Ohio Supreme Court website.

Justice Thomas Interview

U.S. Supreme Court Clarence Thomas gave a rare interview to BusinessWeek recently. The interview primarily focuses on Justice Thomas' college years at Holy Cross.

From WSJ Law Blog.

National Day Care Survey

The Cincinnati Law Library Blog has the details about a recentlty released national day care survey:
A new nationwide survey of the fifty states shows many are "distressingly lax" in their regulation & oversight of child care centers. “We Can Do Better,” published earlier this week by the National Association of Child Care Resource & Referral Agencies, a network of more than 850 child care resource & referral centers located in every state and a most larger communities across the country, is the first of its kind ranking to be done. “The association,” an Associated Press article yesterday said, “reviewed policies & regulations in the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Defense Department – which decisively came out on top overall – both as to standards in place, and how vigorously those standards were enforced.”

Following the Department of Defense, were Illinois, New York, and Maryland. Ohio placed 34th. in the rankings, its two major shortcomings being that teachers are only required to have a high school diploma or GED, and center directors not even being required to have an Associate’s degree or CDA. Kentucky placed 49th. in the survey, having the same two shortcomings as its neighbor to the north, along with not requiring centers to give access to parents at all times or allowing unannounced visits. Indiana’s only shortcoming, according to the survey, was not requiring teachers to have more than a high school diploma or GED. State profiles from the study can be linked here.