Law Library announcements, legal research updates from around the world, new and interesting research resources and web sites of interest to the faculty at the Syracuse University College of Law. Note: For easy navigation, right click on hyperlinks to open links in a new window.

Tuesday, November 30, 2004

New Blog on Freedom of the Press

From the BeSpacific (Law & Technology News) blog
by Sabrina I. Pacifica:

According to Bob Ambrogi, his new blog, Media Law,
"will track news relating to the First Amendment, access
to public records, open meetings laws, journalist shield laws,
libel and other such issues, with an emphasis on

New Blog on Freedom of the Press

From the BeSpacific (Law & Technology News) blog
by Sabrina I. Pacifica:

According to Bob Ambrogi, his new blog, Media Law,
"will track news relating to the First Amendment, access
to public records, open meetings laws, journalist shield laws,
libel and other such issues, with an emphasis on

BarclayBlog Permalinks

One of our readers has asked if the BarclayBlog
posts have permalinks. A permalink is a
permanent hyperlink to a particular blog entry
or post. This enables easy referencing.
BarclayBlog permalinks are linked from the
time stamp under each entry. If you click
on the time stamp, you will open the post
in a separate window.

Monday, November 29, 2004

THOMAS Legislative Web Site Redesign Preview

From the BeSpacific (Law & Technology News) blog
by Sabrina I. Pacifica:

A preview of the new features and design of the THOMAS
(Library of Congress Legislative) Web site is available.
The site's release is expected for January 4, 2005.

The new features include:

*A link to the latest issue of the Daily Digest from the homepage
*A link to most recent legislative action ("Action Yesterday")
from the homepage
*One link - "Bills & Resolutions" - to combine Bill Text and
Bill Summary & Status
*The Congressional Record and its index together on one page
*Bill text searching across multiple Congresses at once

Please note: this is a preview only; the full functionality of the
site won't work until the actual release of the redesign.

E-LawLibrary Weblog

This posting is courtesy of Cornell Law School's InSite
current awareness service.

E-LawLibrary Weblog is the blog of law firm librarian
Edison Ellenberger from Cleveland, Ohio. Online since
February 2004, this blog covers categories such as
“Business Research,” “Information Security,” “Due
Diligence,” “E-Books,” and “Solo/Small Firms.”
Updated daily, often multiple times, E-LawLibrary Weblog
provides professional analysis and commentary on current
news items regarding research, the information profession,
libraries, the legal profession, and law school. A nice
feature of this blog is that it pulls excerpts from an unlikely
blog source: print reference materials. This blog does
not allow reader comments. It is searchable and

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

SU's TRAC Reports Decline in Civil Rights Prosecutions

Civil Rights prosecutions are on the decline, says a new
study by the Syracuse University Transactional Records
Access Clearinghouse at Syracuse University.

According to the TRAC study, FBI Criminal Referrals for
Prosecution Declining, criminal charges were brought in
just 84 cases last year, down from 159 in 1999.
Recommended prosecutions fell from over 3,000 in
1999 to around 1,900 last year.

U.S. Law Schools News Brief

U.S. Law Schools News Brief, a continuously updated
stream of links to news releases issues by law schools
and their universities, is offered as a service to the legal
community by the St. Thomas University School of Law
in Miami.

St. Thomas Law School Dean Bob Butterworth said in
launching the News Brief service:
"Law schools across the country play important roles in their
communities and, in many ways, serve as the lightning rod
critical emerging legal issues... Because our schools are so
dispersed geographically, the impact of law schools as a group
often is not so readily evident. We hope that the consolidation
of this information will help spotlight the contributions our law
schools make, not only to the legal profession but to society
in general."

Monday, November 22, 2004

Google Launches New Search Interface For "Scholarly" Literature

From the FAQ about Google Scholar:

"Google Scholar [] enables you
to search specifically for scholarly literature, including
peer-reviewed papers, theses, books, preprints, abstracts
and technical reports from all broad areas of research.
Use Google Scholar to find articles from a wide
variety of academic publishers, professional societies, preprint
repositories and universities, as well as scholarly articles available
across the web."

See also from the New York Times,
Google Plans New Service for Scientists and Scholars.

Thursday, November 18, 2004

"How Do Current and Prospective Law Students Rank Law Schools?"

Law Blogs are abuzz about Aaron J. Chalfin's new
report, How Do Current and Prospective Law Students
Rank Law Schools?

Chalfin, who has a masters degree in Economics and is a
recent dropout of Georgetown Law School, attempts in his
report to assess how current and prospective law students
would rank the top 55 law schools according to their own criteria
of law school quality.

According to Chalfin, his study confirms "the overwhelming degree
to which both current and prospective law students rely on the
annual rankings compiled by U.S. News and World Report."

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

U.S. DOJ Annual Capital Punishment Report Available Online

The United States Department of Justice has recently
released it's annual report on capital punishment.
Capital Punishment, 2003 [released November 2004;
available in pdf] reports that the number of people
sentenced to death in the United States reached a 30-year
low in 2003.

Monday, November 15, 2004

Silent Witness Exhibit Displayed in Law Library

The law library is currently displaying the powerful
Silent Witness exhibit, which tells the stories of four
area domestic violence victims who lost their lives at
the hands of their husbands. The exhibit is presented
by the Syracuse Junior League, in partnership with
Vera House and with the sponsorship of Welch-Allyn.

The objective of the Silent Witness National Initiative
is to increase awareness of the impact of domestic violence.
To date, the Junior League's exhibit has been displayed in
18 places of business and viewed by more than 5,000
individuals. This year, the JLS was presented the
Oberlander Cup by the Syracuse Federation of Women's Club
for its efforts to bring this worthwhile project to the community.

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

NJ Forbids Judges from Rating Law Schools for US News Rankings

From the Jurist, Law School Buzz, 11/10/2004:

"[T]he New Jersey Administrative Office of the Court has issued
a directive [PDF] to state court judges, advising them that
it would be 'inappropriate" for them to continue to rate law schools
for the use of US News & World Report's annual law school rankings.

Professor Paul Caron of the University of Cincinnati College of Law
wonders, on his TaxProf Blog, whether the directive will affect the
rankings of New Jersey's three law schools. Professor Brian Leiter
of the University of Texas School of Law offers his expectation,
writing on his Leiter Reports that 'removing the New Jersey judges
from the pool will simply penalize the New Jersey law schools, which
are, presumably, rated more highly by New Jersey judges than
judges in neighboring jurisdictions.' "

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

Systemic Analysis of Affirmative Action in American Law Schools

From the Jurist: Law School Buzz, 11/8/2004:

It's not every day that a law review article generates a page-B1 story
in the Wall Street Journal while still in draft version. With his
"Systemic Analysis of Affirmative Action in American Law Schools"
[draft], however, Professor Richard Sander of the
UCLA School of Law has managed to do just that. A self-
described proponent of race-conscious strategies himself,
Sander argues from the data that in practice, affirmative
action at the law school level has actually harmed its
intended beneficiaries. Specifically, substantial admissions
preferences have "mismatched" many black law students into
academic environments where they enter at a comparative
disadvantage, and where early classroom difficulties create
negative consequences for bar passage rates and employment

Critics, however, are already taking their shots.
According to the Journal, Professor Richard Lempert of the
University of Michigan Law School is already honing a "harsh
critique" for submission to the Stanford Law Review, the
publication that will carry the final version of Sander's
"Systematic Analysis" later this month . Sander, for his part,
promises to offer all sides in the spirited dialogue that is sure
to follow on his resource page for the article."

Monday, November 08, 2004

New Blog on Legal Periodicals

From the BeSpacific (Law & Technology News) blog by Sabrina I. Pacifica:

John Doyle, Washington & Lee Law Library, has announced
the launch of his Legal Periodicals blog, which supplements
and expands upon his Most-Cited Legal Periodicals site.

Recent posts include posts:
1) Supplementation to the most-cited list
2) Westlaw law review connector problem
3) Richard Posner's critique of law review student

Westlaw Expands Law Student Access Categories

From Michael Winn, Westlaw Account Representative:

Westlaw is "extending permissible law student password use to
these two categories effective immediately:

1. To unpaid, public interest externships/internships not including
state or local government and courts
2. To pro bono and public service program activity that is required
for graduation

Both categories are permissible uses on a year-round basis."

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Election Web Casts and RSS Feeds

Keep up with election results and
news in real time through one of the live election web casts
or RSS (Really Simple Syndication) news feeds.
Here is a selection:

CNN Radio
C-SPAN (Real Media & Windows Media)
Live Feeds
Voice of America Radio
Jurist: Legal News RSS Coverage

Google Help: Cheat Sheet

Refine your Internet searches and retrieve
better search results with this
succinct Cheat Sheet of Google search
operators and services.

Tips include: limiting your
searches to a single web site, accessing
product information within a specific
price range, and locating definitions
of terms and phrases.

Monday, November 01, 2004

Delaware Corporate Law Clearinghouse

The Widener University School of Law's
Delaware Corporate Law Clearinghouse
offers access to selected filings and opinions
in corporate and other business litigation in
the Delaware Court of Chancery.

Through this site, you can:
"Search, by document type, keywords and
case number a database of filings and opinions
in corporate litigation, including complaints,
court opinions and orders, briefs, and
settlement papers."

New Pew Survey on Internet and Politics

From the BeSpacific (Law & Technology News)
blog by Sabrina I. Pacifica:

"The new survey by the Pew Internet & American
Life Project in collaborationwith the University of Michigan
School of Information survey...shows that internet users
have greater overall exposure to political arguments,
including those that challenge their candidate preferences
and their positions on some key issues."

Federal Government Election Resources

FirstGov for Citizens has created a Voting
and Elections web portal. Contents include:

The Basics
Contact Elected Officials
Electoral College History
Learn About Candidates
Legislation and Reform
Register to Vote & Go Vote
Volunteering and Contributions