Useful Research Tool- Locating the Law: A Handbook for Non-law Librarians

December 13, 2011 at 4:12 pm | Posted in Ideas, law librarianship, legal research strategy | Leave a comment

The Southern California Association of Law Libraries (SCALL) Public Access to Legal Information (PALI) Committee has just posted the updated edition of Locating the Law: A Handbook for Non-law Librarians, available at

You can view individual chapters or the entire publication in one large PDF. Also, feel free to link to it as well.


By Robert Darnton

December 8, 2010 at 5:49 pm | Posted in Ideas, library literature | Leave a comment

From Karen Green, Ancient & Medieval History and Religion Librarian & Graphic Novels Librarian at Columbia University:

WikiLeaks Scandal

December 4, 2010 at 8:03 pm | Posted in Ideas | 1 Comment

 A very interesting issue was brought to my attention in connection to the posting below: whether donors can be charged with aiding and abetting the recipient of whatever crimes the recipient may be found guilty of eventually. As long as the donation is made for legal reasons, in this instance to uphold the First Amendment (access to information) or to support a defense fund (anybody has the right to a defense), there cannot be any questions of aiding and abetting. Criminal aiding and abetting require adequate means rea. Let’s not forget Bill Clinton’s defense fund when he was facing impeachment charges in the United States Senate.


Preparing for the summer class on law, information, and society, I started paying attention to the WikiLeaks scandal. As a librarian I believe information should be available to the public and the government should not engage in intimidation tactics, unless it is a non-democratic police state.

Here is information on how to donate to wikileaks (updated after the Swiss banks blocked WikiLeaks’ account).


WikiLeaks brings truth to the world by publishing fact-based stories without fear or favor. You can help support our independent media by donating financially.

Our organisation exists because of the work of many volunteers who have contributed thousands of hours to building WikiLeaks from the ground up. But we still need donations to pay for computers, expert programmers and other bills. You choose how much you can donate, we don’t recommend any particular amount. Just do what you think is right.

There are four ways to donate:

  1. Online Transfer via Credit Card
  2. Bank Transfer [option 1: everyone]
  3. Bank Transfer [option 2: tax deductible in Germany]
  4. Postal Mail


1. Julian Assange Defence Fund

Please donate directly to the Julian Assange and other WikiLeaks Staff Defence Fund. These funds will be used exclusively for defence costs

To donate please do an electronic bank transfer (EFT) to:

Account number: 91-765019-6
IBAN:CH55 0900 0000 9176 5019 6
Account name:Assange Julian Paul, Geneve
Address::Swiss Post
Engehaldenstrasse, 37
Bern, Switzerland


1. Online Transfer via Credit Card

Using our friendly credit card processing partner Datacell Switzerland.

2. Bank Transfer – Option 1: via Sunshine Press Productions ehf:

Skulagötu 19, 101 Reykjavik, Iceland
Landsbanki Islands Account number 0111-26-611010
ACCOUNT/IBAN:IS97 0111 2661 1010 6110 1002 80

3. Bank Transfer – Option 2: via the not-for-profit Wau Holland Stiftung Foundation:

This support is tax deductible in Germany
Bank Account: 2772812-04
IBAN: DE46 5204 0021 0277 2812 04
Bank: Commerzbank Kassel
German BLZ: 52040021
Subject: WIKILEAKS / WHS Projekt 04



4. Via Postal Mail

You can post a donation via good old fashion postal mail to:

(or any suitable name likely to avoid interception in your country)
BOX 4080
Australia Post Office – University of Melbourne Branch
Victoria 3052

We don’t accept paypal donations anymore.
And here is why


You can post a donation via good old fashion postal mail to:

(or any suitable name likely to avoid interception in your country)
BOX 4080
Australia Post Office – University of Melbourne Branch
Victoria 3052

Webinar of Potential Interest

October 12, 2010 at 6:58 pm | Posted in Ideas, law librarianship | Leave a comment

Email from Jon:


The Legal Division is pleased to co-sponsor this event with SLA’s Philadelphia Chapter.  This event is FREE for all participants.  For those of you outside the Philadelphia area, please join us in cyberspace via webinar.  If you are local, the event will be held on the campus of Drexel University.  The registration link and details are below.


** Direct all questions, comments, or concerns to SLA Philadelphia Chapter Chair-Elect Robert Guerrero at **

The Philadelphia Chapter of the Special Libraries Association concludes its 2010 Program Series on Thursday, November 4th, 2010.  Click HERE to register

TOPIC: “The FDsys” : the new GPO Access

PRESENTER: Ashley Dahlen  – Outreach Librarian at the U.S. Government Printing Office in Washington, D.C.

WHEN: Thursday, November 4, 2010 — 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm

(Registration starts at 5:30 pm)

LOCATION: The Mary Hagerty Learning Lab (Room L33/34) at the Hagerty Library at Drexel University

•Address:   33rd & Market Sts.  Philadelphia, PA 19104-2875
•Parking:   Metered on-street parking available, hourly-pay parking at 34th & Chestnut garage

GPO Access will be going away soon as the U.S. Government Printing Office rolls out the Federal Digital System (FDsys), an advanced digital system that will enable GPO to manage Government information from all three branches of the U.S. Government. Learn about the new system and its features, what content is available through it, and search strategies. Not only is FDsys a powerful tool for the public to access online, authoritative Federal information, but it also serves as a preservation repository for the content and a content management system for Federal agencies.

COST:   FREE for all participants


Pizza and beverages will be provided to all attendees

**** The SLA Philadelphia Chapter will be accepting book donations for our ANNUAL BOOK DRIVE at this event ****

This year’s recipient is:  Out of School Time (OST) Programs—Reaches over 2,200 youth every year in grades K-8.  OST programs are located across the City and serve children in schools and at CSS’ Family Service Centers.  OST Programs enrich the lives of children through literacy and are in the process of creating extensive libraries.

SPONSORS: This session is being co-sponsored by the SLA Legal Division and the DUSLA student chapter at Drexel University.

REGISTRATION DEADLINE is Tuesday, November 2nd at 5pm

Click HERE to register

Robert L. Guerrero
Library Manager

Richards, Layton & Finger, P.A.

One Rodney Square

920 North King Street

Wilmington, DE 19801

Phone: 302-651-7775

Fax: 302-498-7775



Additional Optional Reading for Wednesday, June 16

June 10, 2010 at 8:06 pm | Posted in Ideas, law librarianship, PRATT SILS 684 | 1 Comment

James Donovan has recently published this great piece on collection development. I would love one of you to present its summary. If there are no takers, which I understand, don’t worry, I will lead the discussion.

Reposting a Postcard Campaign to Save New York City Libraries

May 11, 2010 at 12:04 am | Posted in Ideas, law librarianship | Leave a comment

Reposting from Criminal Law Library Blog


Posted On: May 7, 2010 by David Badertscher

Postcard Campaign to Save New York City Libraries

The following is being posted as an urgent message at the request of a law librarian colleague :

As I am sure you know this year is on track to produce a budget disaster for libraries in New York City. The cuts currently proposed will result in massive layoffs and cuts in public service. A small group of library workers and concerned citizens has started a postcard campaign to highlight support for public libraries and ask the City Council to restore as much funding to library budgets as possible.

The idea is that we are going back to an old fashioned postcard writing campaign. Individuals are encouraged to write postcards in support of libraries and mail them to the offices of City Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer. His office will collect the postcards and present them to the City Council, en masse as a sort of Miracle on 34th Street statement. Any postcards will do. We suggest being creative, but inexpensive postcards, ten for a dollar in Time Square, work great too.

This effort was started by the group Urban Librarians Unite and is now being endorsed and supported by Queens Library Guild Local 1321, Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO), and Desk Set. It is not a part of the formal campaigns by the city public libraries, and it is our intention to augment, not compete, with those official efforts. We are asking you to pass the word to your members, encourage them to solicit postcards, and promote the campaign. As we move forward we hope to organize events including a possible read-in to support New York City libraries.

The deadline for sending postcards to Council Member Van Bramer is Tuesday, June 15. But, of course, there is no time like the present for information profession and librarian colleagues to support one another.

Thank you for your time and consideration. I hope that you will ally yourself with us as we fight for every dime we can get for public libraries in the city.


Christian Zabriske
Urban Librarians Unite

Legal Research Using Google Scholar from The Volokh Conspiracy Blog

April 5, 2010 at 9:01 pm | Posted in Ideas | Leave a comment

Perhaps a helpful reading for your weekly assignment on full-text case law research:

Legal Research Using Google Scholar

Orin Kerr • April 5, 2010 1:18 am

Over at, John Wesley Hall suggests that Google Scholar is a very helpful way to find and link to caselaw online. 

I’ve fiddled with it a bit, and I think it’s a great tip. For example, if you want to read cases on the “reasonable expectation of privacy” test, you enter “reasonable expectation of privacy” into Google Scholar, just click on “legal opinions and journals,” and you get a list of cases with their citations that you can read in what seems to be rough order of prominence. The cases themselves are in a very easy-to-read format, with clearly visible page references for pincites to the published reports. You can do a date range search, and each opinion includes links to all the other cited opinions. And if you really want to get into it, check out the Advanced Scholar Search page.

I’ve just started to check this out, but it seems sort of like a free version of Westlaw. It doesn’t have all the same functionality, but the price is certainly right. And the cases actually load faster than Westlaw does. Very cool — yay Internet! 

Pratt Student-Led Journal?

February 23, 2010 at 5:08 pm | Posted in Ideas | Leave a comment


Reading about Student Pulse,, in the Chronicle of Higher Education (, I thought about Pratt students creating such an academic journal, where they publish their work and that of other library students. 

Blog at
Entries and comments feeds.