Monday, February 28, 2011

Banning Laptops in the Classroom

Temple University law professor Kristen Murray recently posted a paper on SSRN about the topic of banning laptops in the law school classroom. Read about her survey of law students and their laptop use as well as her discussion of five laptop myths. For a brief treatment of the topic, see also the recent blog post by John Mayer (no, not that one) of CALI.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Arizona and National Immigration Crisis Resources

UCLA law library has assembled numerous resources related to Arizona Senate bill 1070 and national immigration issues. In addition to news and analysis of the bill, the regularly updated site provides extensive information about responses to the bill such as lawsuits, copycat provisions in other states, protests, boycotts, and government resolutions.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Fourth Amendment Cases

Hat tip to The Volokh Conspiracy:

The FourthAmendment.com site has a listing of significant Fourth Amendment cases with links. There are also lists of the most recent opinions from different courts, and cases most recently heard by the Supreme Court.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Prosecuting with an iPad

Click here to read about a Virginia district attorney's experience prosecuting cases using an iPad in the courtroom.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Presidents' Day Discovery

Hat tip to my mother for this one...

Just in time for Presidents' Day, a remarkable discovery was made at Washington University in St. Louis: 74 volumes in the rare book room were once owned by Thomas Jefferson.

Jefferson scholars have now confirmed that Washington University has the third-largest collection of Jefferson's books, after the Library of Congress and the University of Virginia. Some of the volumes are marked in Jefferson's own unusual way--writing a small letter "T" at the bottom of pages. Some have comments (and corrections!) in the margins, and even notes tucked into the books themselves.

You can learn more about the discovery at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and The New York Times.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Resources on Middle East Unrest

The BBC provides a frequently updated resource concerning the recent protests in the Middle East. Click here for a country by country description including the most recent uprisings against the Gaddafi government in Libya. See also the resources provided by the Brookings Institution.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Analysis of Ohio SB 5 (Collective Bargaining)

The Ohio Legislative Service Commission has released its analysis of Senate Bill 5, which proposes to abolish collective bargaining rights for state employees. Access the bill analysis in html or pdf format. See also coverage of yesterday's hearing by the Columbus Dispatch and Gongwer News Service (accessible from Drinko Hall).

Thursday, February 17, 2011

More TSA Lawsuits

More lawsuits against the TSA are being filed (and resolved):

A Seattle man was acquitted of four misdemeanor charges, including concealing his identity and disorderly conduct. Phil Mocek failed to show ID to the TSA in Albuquerque and filmed the encounter with his phone.

A Texas woman sued the TSA when her breasts were exposed during an airport search. The lawsuit claimed negligence and emotional distress, as agents laughed and joked about the incident. The case has settled for a "nominal" amount.

Former governor Jesse Ventura is suing the TSA for violation of the right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures. The complaint, filed in January in the U.S. District Court for Minnesota, can be found here.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Same-Sex Marriage Laws Updates

Recent updates to our table of Same-Sex Marriage Laws include Illinois' new civil union law, a proposed bill allowing civil unions in Hawaii, and proposed constitutional amendments banning same-sex marriage in Wyoming and Indiana. The Hawaii bill and the Wyoming and Indiana constitutional amendments have each passed one legislative chamber. JURIST recaps recent developments in more detail.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Global Legal Monitor

In past years, this blog has mentioned Global Legal Monitor, an online publication from the Law Library of Congress. As In Custodia Legis explains, many of these stories will not reach most American newspapers or television. You can search Global Legal Monitor (by country, topic, date, etc.), you can read the monthly issues (archived here), or you can get it delivered to your inbox.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Video Game Bar Association

A group of attorneys in Los Angeles has formed the Video Game Bar Association, a worldwide association for attorneys practicing in the area of video game law. See a recent article on the organization in National Law Journal.

Friday, February 11, 2011

State Cyberbullying Laws

Via beSpacific, here is a review of state cyberbullying laws and policies from the Cyberbullying Research Center, updated January 2011. The review includes descriptions of statutes and policies from each state often with links to legislation.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Disney Lawsuits

Some developments in lawsuits filed by and against Disney:

A quadriplegic man sues for emotional distress and violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act after being stuck on It's A Small World.


A woman sues Disney, claiming that an employee in a Donald Duck costume groped her at Epcot.


And Disney sues Hotfile for copyright infringement.

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Criminal Law Essay Competition

From Cleveland-Marshall:

the American Judges Association's Twenty-Third Annual Law Student Essay Competition

The predetermined issue is whether minors are entitled to notification of Miranda rights and the right to have a parent present before police questioning on school grounds. The first place award winner receives $3000. Email or postmark your entry by June 1.

Monday, February 07, 2011

Ohio Custody Case Between Former Same-Sex Partners

The Ohio Supreme Court recently heard a child custody case between two women formerly in a committed romantic relationship. One woman seeks shared custody of the child with the other woman, the child's biological mother. The merit briefs of appellant and appellee are available from the Ohio Supreme Court. Many interested parties filed amicus briefs accessible here. See also the oral argument video from the Ohio Channel and a brief article in the Cincinnati Enquirer.

Friday, February 04, 2011

Reading Apps

Here's a recent article about software applications designed to ease reading on the web. Among the apps discussed is Readability, which with one click strips articles to simply text and photos for a "cleaner" reading view. This app requires a subscription fee, a large percentage of which goes to the article content creators. Also discussed is Read It Later, which allows users to quickly mark and store online articles for later reading on or off line.

Thursday, February 03, 2011

Changes for Drug Offenses in Ohio?

Hat tip to Sentencing Law and Policy Blog:

With Ohio prisons overcrowded by 33%, an overhaul of the current system is being proposed, including treatment instead of prison for nonviolent drug offenders, and shortened sentences for offenders who complete certain programs while in prison.

News coverage here and here.

Poll and comments on the proposed changes here.

Report and presentation here.

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Interview of Moritz Grad and LOC Librarian

An interview with Moritz grad and Library of Congress librarian Matthew Braun appears today on In Custodia Legis. Read interesting facts such as the surprisingly large portion of the LOC's print collection that is in languages other than English and Braun's distant relation to Babe Ruth.

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Animals in Libraries

Lately there has been celebration of animals, both wild and domestic, in libraries.

The Library of Congress hosted a bird visitor recently, a Cooper's Hawk which got lost and somehow found its way into the Main Reading Room. The hawk, nicknamed Jefferson (though the bird is female), was caught and transported to the Raptor Conservancy of Virginia.

This week, Out of the Jungle celebrates library cats.

And there have been many news articles about dogs in libraries, including in Illinois, California, and Wisconsin.