There will surely be rafts of analysis and discussion in the
days, weeks, and months to come concerning today’s U.S. Supreme Court decision
v. Public.Resource.Org. And while interesting issues abound, what this law
librarian found most striking at first glance were the pronouncements by the Justices
about the importance of annotated codes. Indeed, it is quite rare that courts,
let alone the Supreme Court, tell us what they think about legal research
products. So, here we will eschew opining on the merits of the decision or its
significance, but will focus instead on the veritable feast of what the high
court has to say about annotated codes, as well as other advice offered about conducting legal research.
Read More... (What We Can Learn About Legal Research from the Supreme Court in Georgia v. Public.Resource.Org)
Posted by Aaron S. Kirschenfeld on Mon. April 27, 2020 5:00 PM
Rule 18.2.1(a), as noted in yesterday's post, allows for
citation to sources available online “as if to the original print source” in
three cases: when there is an “authenticated, official, or exact copy of a
source available online.” I based my argument on the third option, an “exact
copy,” on an assumption that the PDFs of the U.S. Code were neither
authenticated nor official. This assumption, like many to have come before it,
is flat-out wrong.
Read More... (Citing the U.S. Code in the New Year: Part 2)
Posted by Aaron S. Kirschenfeld on Tue. January 7, 2020 4:31 PM
How would you properly cite a section of the official U.S.
Code today, January 6, 2020? As lawyers and law students no doubt realize, the
answer is more complicated than it may appear. This post will offer advice and
reasoning about how to go about choosing the year to append to the title number,
abbreviation, and section number that will make a complete and correct citation
following the rules of The Bluebook.
Read More... (Citing the U.S. Code in the New Year)
Posted by Aaron S. Kirschenfeld on Mon. January 6, 2020 3:06 PM
The Bluebook does
not provide clear guidance on how to cite every authority that law students or
legal practitioners need or wish to use in their papers, memos, and briefs.
Sometimes, researchers will toil in vain looking for a particular rule or
example to cover a less common type of source, only to find that there is no
answer. They have stared into the abyss and the abyss has merely stared back!
So what do you do now?
Read More... (How to Cite a Concurrence In or Dissent From a Denial of Certiorari)
Posted by Aaron S. Kirschenfeld on Thu. February 28, 2019 1:30 PM
Section 154 of PL 115-141, passed earlier in 2018 and now codified at 2 U.S.C. § 166a, mandates that many common types of CRS Reports must be published for free on a publicly accessible website.
Before this law was passed, Members of Congress needed to choose to release reports on an individual basis for them to become public. There was no comprehensive, publicly available, official location for accessing CRS Reports. Reports that did become public were collected on non-profit websites maintained by open-government advocates or were sold to customers by legal information vendors. It was weird, and usually pretty confusing, even for experienced researchers. But now that is all changing!
Read More... (CRS Reports Now Publicly Available from Library of Congress)
Posted by Aaron S. Kirschenfeld on Tue. September 18, 2018 5:04 PM
Did you know that the law library provides access to more than 500 online study aids to Carolina Law students and faculty? Well, we do! We provide access for the law school community to the online West Study Aids collection which includes study aids from most areas of the law.
Starting this academic year, there are some changes to the way you find and use these study aid e-books.
Read More... (Using the West Study Aids Collection)
Posted by Aaron S. Kirschenfeld on Thu. August 25, 2016 9:23 AM