Showing posts from January, 2017

Is .Gov Reputable?

During information-literacy instruction, librarians generally count on the .gov domain suffix to lead to reputable information.  For example, this site on evaluating internet information plainly states: .gov Government. If you come across a site with this domain, then you're viewing a federal government site. All branches of the United States federal government use this domain. Information such as Census statistics, Congressional hearings, and Supreme Court rulings would be included in sites with this domain. The information is considered to be from a credible source . And another site also states:  You can trust sites with “.gov” addresses . You can also trust sites with “.edu” addresses if they’re produced by the educational institution. Personal pages of individuals at an educational institution may not be trustworthy, even though they have “.edu” addresses. The presence of “.org” in an address doesn’t guarantee that a site is reputable; there have been instance

Law Librarians Filling Gaps in Law School Curricula

Many law librarians try to find creative ways to incorporate research into the law school curriculum. Some try to integrate fully into the 1L program to ensure that all law students get a proper legal-research foundation. Others may hit roadblocks taking that route and instead start law library administered legal research programs . Whichever method you use to instill the importance of efficient and effective legal research, and aside from the importance of researching across the law school curriculum , there are a couple of gaps to note in student ability that have run consistent throughout my time as a teaching law librarian. One is the understanding of the interplay between statutes and regulations. I regularly ask my students to explain it, and I've only had a few who could do it. If students don't understand that statutes enable administrative agencies to enforce the law and that administrative agencies create regulations that further the goals of enforcement, then h

Find FREE Books with Google Chrome Library Extension

There's a cool new tool in the Library Extension for Google Chrome . Like many people (and even as a librarian), I often find myself clicking "purchase" on Amazon before checking with my local library for a book that I am interested in. As mentioned on Lifehacker , Amazon may be convenient, but nothing beats free. After you install the Library Extension for Chrome, any searches that you do on Amazon will yield results from your local library, too.  From Library Extension's website : Easily see what titles are available at your local library as you browse for books! As you browse books and e-books, the Library Extension can check your library's online catalog and display the availability of that item on the same page. If the book is available at your library, you'll know instantly – and have a quick, convenient link to reserve the title!  The extension allows you to pick your favorite local libraries and add them to a list. Then, when you shop for books

AI & The Duty of Technology Competence

The use of artificial intelligence has many potential pitfalls regarding attorney professional responsibility rules. One such pitfall has to do with the duty of technology competence. As Robert Ambrogi points out over on Law Sites , there are now 26 states that have adopted the duty of technology competence for lawyers - first noted in Comment 8 to ABA Model Rule 1.1.  The ABA version states:  To maintain the requisite knowledge and skill, a lawyer should keep abreast of changes in the law and its practice, including the benefits and risks associated with relevant technology , engage in continuing study and education and comply with all continuing legal education requirements to which the lawyer is subject. (Emphasis added.) While the states may differ in the exact language of their rules, these rules will likely have an ongoing effect on a lawyer's duty to learn various aspects of ever-changing technology.  Down the road, there may be a time when attorneys m

Ravel Law for Judicial Analytics

In December, the ABA Journal reported on  a new judicial analytics tool by Ravel Law . As mentioned, currently, the field of judicial analytics mainly focuses on individual judges and what their histories and tendencies are, so that lawyers will be able to make more informed decisions regarding litigation strategy.  Ravel Law knew that the individual-judge strategy was cumbersome and limited. With that, Ravel Law launched Court Analytics , a comprehensive analytical tool that covers more than 400 federal and state courts. Court Analytics allows users to search through a jurisdiction, filtering out over 90 types of motions and topics. The tool analyzes case outcomes, language patterns and citation history, among other things, to give practitioners insight as to how courts and judges throughout a jurisdiction have ruled on certain types of motions or cases in the past. The tool also highlights the most-cited precedents and cases within a jurisdiction Ravel Law intends for the analy

A Rollout of Staff-less Libraries

In Dublin, Ireland, twenty-three library branches will offer a new Open Library service in 2017, meaning libraries will stay open and operate without staff during the evenings and weekends. This initiative has made the library staff uneasy. And the librarians have come out against the initiative stating “We truly believe that this move is the beginning of the end for our Public Library Service.” This has become a bit of a hot-button political issue as the Dublin City Councillors voted against the initiative to show support for librarians and library staff. However, the Minister of Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government Simon Coveney said, “There will be no closure of library branches as a result of the Open Library service. Similarly, there will be no reduction in staffing levels or staffed hours as a result of the service, either in the short or long term." He added that “funding is allocated to libraries on the basis of applications received from local authoritie